- Document your plan:
The old saying goes: If you fail to plan, you plan to fail. For accounting firms wishing to forge ahead with social media, the first thing you should be doing is documenting your plan. However, if you are just starting out this is going to be difficult. On an ongoing basis, this plan will need to be a living breathing document – changing constantly. Start by creating a list of questions you need to answer as your journey progresses, the questions will things like:
- What are my follower goals?
- Which social media platforms appeal to my clients?
- With what frequency shall I post content?
- What kind of content should I provide to whom?
- Should I have a budget for promoting my posts?
A good start would be to fill out the first section on follower goals. A good start might be to simply state that you want 500 followers on each platform. Set your goal to whatever you are comfortable with, then plan out how you’re going to get there.
The next step is to have the discipline to review this document and lay out more of the plan as you go. The cornerstone of this process is creating a goal, then working out a plan for how you’re going to achieve it.
- Get Personal:
I recently saw an accounting firms post on facebook about their “bring your pets to work day” complete with photos and I thought this was absolutely great. As a client, I might not be a pet-lover, but for the pet-loving clients in your client base (or prospective client list), they will really identify and you will stand out to them. This level of showing personality is exactly what social media is about … building an identity for your firm and showing that you have a personality.
- Know your platforms:
With the above example, Facebook was the perfect platform to pull this off. This is because Facebook is quite a bit less formal than the likes of LinkedIn, but it allows more personality than Twitter. It’s critical to know your platforms so as to help maximize the impact of your social media activity. Here is a helpful chart to help you decide:
|Style of content||More of a “fun”, less formal platform. Great for humorous content||Due to really tight post length requirements (140 characters), keep messages brief and impactful. Great for compliance deadline reminders||Slightly more formal (but not too much). Content should be insightful and thought provoking. Feel free to challenge common assumptions in discussion.|
- Promote Your Posts:
Your social media posts will have a certain “reach” on each platform which is mainly determined by your number of followers. Your posts will reach further afield especially when your followers interact with your content allowing it to be visible on their feeds. However, it is in the best interest of social media platforms to limit your reach because they also sell the ability to spread your message. Facebook for example, has placed a limit on organic reach in order to increase their advertising revenue.
A key to increasing your reach is obviously to pay for it. However, what isn’t obvious is that it doesn’t have to be much. If you are mainly doing this for engagement, then a small budget will be just fine for your purposes. As a first foray into social media advertising, next time you post something to Facebook, click on the “Boost” button. Enter a small budget, maybe less than $10 and set your target demographic. It will be very interesting for you to see the engagement and reach metrics in comparison to what you would normally get organically.
- Up the frequency:
If you feel like you aren’t getting anywhere with all of this, it might be worth trying increasing your post frequency. I know from experience that Accountants are reluctant to post often. So to help challenge this: Below is a chart borrowed from Buffer showing how far you can push your frequency until it starts to create negative returns. Unfortunately, LinkedIn isn’t included in this but I suggest that it’s the similar to Facebook.
If you’re looking to work up a sweat with your digital marketing activities in 2016 –join our upcoming special 4 part program to learn more!
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For more information, you can call Ben Jacobson on 1300 883 789.