Customer Experience News & Trends

22 ways to add value to your social media experience

We write a lot about customers’ increasing appetite for social media. How can you possibly fill that hunger? Here are 22 ideas.

In social media, your first priority is responding to customers’ needs.

But in between the demand for help and answers, engage customers and add value to the relationship with great content. The quality of what you put out there can increase sales and loyalty. Almost 80% of customers say a company’s social media posts impact their buying decisions.

The good news: Almost anyone — from the CEO and CFO to the tech team and customer service pros – has something to offer in social media.

Something for everyone

Try these ideas for posts and content that will keep your social media sites fresh and engaging:

  1. Show what’s behind the scenes. Post images of your products in the making or design teams at work. It shows you’re a trustworthy and accessible company. Don’t stage the photos. Use real people doing real work. Try a series — a full week of images and explanations of how a product or service comes to fruition.
  2. Use infographics. You don’t have to do all the research or creation. Dig up some stats on a subject important to your customers and pull it together with free services such as Piktochart.
  3. Create case studies. This might sound like a little more work, but marketing pros can pull short stories together with this easy formula: Problem, Solution, Result. Get a few customers to explain the problem they faced, how your product or service solved it, and the positive result.
  4. Get an update from the top. Ask your CEO to give a weekly, brief update on a topic of his or her choice — the company’s mission, product line, an employee spotlight, etc. But it can’t be a state-of-the-union address. Make it a positive story using simple language. That’s what people want to see in social media.
  5. Throw it back. You don’t have to wait until Thursday to post some throw-backs, but whenever you do one make it valuable. Put up a shot of your first facility, product, marketing campaign or something that’s evolved. Add a few lines about how you’ve improved or changed it over time based on customer preferences.
  6. Show your customers. Ask your biggest fans in social media to share a photo of themselves using your product or service and add a line about why they love it.
  7. Show people how it’s done. Put up videos of your product going through the assembly process. If it’s a long process, show them the coolest, most important parts.
  8. Don’t show your products or services. You don’t want to feature your stuff in every shot because social media isn’t just a sales tool. You should also build engagement by putting up images that resonate with your customers. For instance, a quiet restaurant or couples resort might post a man and woman holding hands. Or a foam manufacturer might post photos of people sleeping peacefully.
  9. Be inspirational. Post a funny or inspirational image that fits in with your customers’ lifestyles. For instance, if you sell protein bars, post photos and quotes from great athletes. Or, if you manufacture parts for motorcycles, post landscapes and quotes about travel or a free spirit.
  10. Share a book. Ask employees to share a book they’ve recently read that would be a good fit for your customers. Anything that’s related to customers’ professions or lifestyles can be helpful. It shows customers that there are like-minded people working where they do business.
  11. Ask questions. You can ask what customers think about your products or services or changes to them. Also, try questions that get them thinking about what could be better — and will give you ideas for improving your customer experience: What’s one improvement you’d like to see with Model X? Who do you think provides the best customer service and why?
  12. Make suggestions. Share your favorite social media sites related to your industry or personal interests that customers might learn from or enjoy. It shows that you stay involved in and up-to-date on your industry and share interests with your customers.
  13. Let your loyal customers speak. Find a long-time customer and have a professional video testimonial recorded. Keep it posted on your social media sites, and periodically send out links to it.
  14. Similarly, put the spotlight on a long-time employee (especially one who works with customers). Have a professional video testimonial recorded. Ask him or her to talk about how things have changed over the years and why he or she has stayed with the company through it all. This is powerful because customers like to feel they do business with people, not companies.
  15. Share industry news. Pick up releases and studies from your industry watchdog, think tanks or local colleges. Post them to build yourself up as an industry expert.
  16. Share company news. Post great stuff about your company in your community — perhaps local philanthropic work. Include employee accomplishments — perhaps participation in arts or sporting events, or professional certifications.
  17. Host a hangout on Google+. You can chat with your customers, and a transcript of the conversation can be produced if people want to pull out tips that will work for them.
  18. Tease something. If you’re working on a white paper, annual report or blog post, tease it in social media. Give customers an intriguing snippet of what’s to come, and let them know when to expect it.
  19. Highlight something from your FAQs. Check which one of your FAQs is most visited and highlight that and its answers at least weekly.
  20. Spread the credit. Share LinkedIn groups you find valuable. When you see excellent LinkedIn conversations, share the content.
  21. Post lists. People love “Top 5” and “Top 10” lists. Make sure you offer valuable lists, though. For instance, a software producer might post, “The top 5 apps to boost productivity,” or an outdoor clothier might offer, “Top 10 hikes in the U.S.”
  22. Post more lists. Ask your tech team to pull together their “Top 10 fixes” for common problems. Get your customer service team to tell you “Top 5 ways to expedite your order.” Ask sales reps to list the “Top 7 questions new customers need answered.” Every department has something customers could use.

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