Week 7 – Go live with your first professional social media account

Space shuttle taking off on a mission. Spaceship flying

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After 6 weeks of preparations you are ready go live. Staring the journey with your professional social media account. And a few things can make your start steps simple and efficient with your first account.

Engage in existing conversations

Social media is great for digital conversations. And the easiest way to start is to engage in existing conversations. Browsing through posts made by your existing network. Making comments in existing conversation threads. Asking questions related to a post you have seen.

By engaging in existing conversations, you will learn which type of posts that spark engagement. Exciting enough to make others comment and engage. A post not triggering engagements is a wasted effort.

A professional who engage in a thread also make other followers curious. Who is this new kid on the block making great comments. A source for growing your base of followers.

I missed this opportunity completely in the early days of my journey. A bit too focused on posts stimulating a like or a share/re-tweet. And not realizing the value of engaging in existing threads.

Publish post with company unique content with a regular cadence

Pure text posts on social media is the least engaging. Be proud to steel learnings from your private Facebook and Instagram experiences. People get more excited with pictures and content pointers from your post. Insights applicable in the professional social media world on Twitter and LinkedIn to.

A great starting point is to share content created by your own company. Where you become an employee ambassador in sharing already created content. Sharing different types of content. Pictures or Infographics in a post. Posting links to blogposts and similar written material. Trying out which type of content your audience seem to appreciate.

The following rules of thumb can help you here. Track every post you make, to judge what works and what don not seem to work. Do more of the post you manage to drive engagements with. Scrutinize all content you post or link to.  Professional social media is a trust business. Where your trust come from four factors

  1. Your authenticity and judgement – you want to stand out for relaying great content
  2. Type of content – Inbound content put your customer in focus, outbound focus on you and your company.
  3. Fit in the social media attention span – you have 1-2 seconds to attract your audience to engage further.
  4. A regular cadence in your postings – stick to your planed frequency.

In my early days I relayed too much content designed for outbound communication. Not questioning the target audience for the content enough. Facilitating a flow from my audience and in, not from me and out.

Provide tokens of appreciations

It is easy to believe the social interaction on social media platforms is less than in real life. But I would argue the opposite. A negative vibe accelerates when your audience start commenting on a negative post. And you can come across as arrogant if not connecting in any way with a direct post or request.

Take the little extra time to thank your audience for commenting on, or sharing/retweeting, a post. A thank you post or comment naming the ones engaging with you create a first good digital impression. And consider the first digital impression your make to be more important than in the real world. In the real world you can make a comeback after 15 vague seconds. In the digital world you need to strike in windows with short attention spans.

It is tempting to save time by providing auto generated responses when connecting. And skipping commenting on comments you get. But at least early on along your journey it is a better to show appreciation to all engaging with you.

One of my focus areas thank to a good coach.

Check list for this weeks’ exercise

Engage in existing conversations

  • Comment on LinkedIn articles
  • Comment on Twitter tweets
  • Comment on Instagram posts

Start publishing posts with company unique content with selected cadence

  • LinkedIn post with original content from a colleague
  • Twitter tweet with original content from a colleague

Provide tokens of appreciation for all engagements

  • Thank the people connecting with you
  • Write “thank you” comments for all comments your have received
  • Thank you for all retweets

Thank you for engaging in this weeks’ program. And good luck with your initial explorations live. Next week we will work with refining your net etiquette.

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