Boomtown | Add value before self-promoting on social media
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25 Feb Add value before self-promoting on social media

By Yolandi Allen

Add value before self-promoting on social media
Businesses often misunderstand the function of social media. A quick scroll through most business pages on Facebook will quickly reveal their errors.

Social media and our newsfeeds are saturated with well-meaning posts about yet another product or service available, or ‘amazing’ discounts in overtly sales-like posts. But social media is ineffective when used purely as a tool for self-promotion. Social media is most effective when used to engage with consumers and create meaningful relationships with them.

In a highly digitalised world, consumers are bombarded with information all day, every day. Studies reveal we are exposed to an average of 10,000 brand messages per day. And as technologies change and evolve and more platforms are created, so too that number increases. Add to that an attention span that is less than that of a goldfish, and it becomes clear that we are fighting for the attention of consumers on a large scale. So how do you as a business cut through the online clutter and connect with your consumers in a meaningful way?

Less talking, more listening.

Focus on connecting with consumers by giving them what they want, rather than giving them more of what you want. The biggest mistake that a business can make is to create content that is primarily focussed on its needs, rather than that of the consumer’s.

By listening to the conversations that consumers are having around your brand, industry, product or service, you will be able to deliver exactly what it is your audience wants and needs. Listening to your consumers gives you actionable insights into behaviours and emotions, allowing you to provide them with quality content that adds value, informs, entertains and sparks conversation.

It’s only once you have your consumer’s attention that you can self-promote with purpose and relevance. The 80/20 principle is a good rule of thumb to follow for your social media strategy.¬† In essence, it means that the majority of your content (80%) on social media should be useful, entertaining and informative and only a small portion (20%) should be directly self-promotional.

Social media is fundamentally, a social tool and businesses must use it as such, or drown in a cluttered world of irrelevant content.