Customer referrals are a great way to get free advertising. They can also carry more weight than traditional marketing because it’s a real, everyday person putting stock in your products or services — not an actor or an imaginary persona you’ve constructed.
Like customer referrals, social media mentions are also important. Unlike a referral that typically occurs through word-of-mouth and only reaches a few people at once, a social media mention can get your brand in front of hundreds or thousands of people at a time, depending on who gives you the mention.
Referrals and mentions do come naturally when customers have a great experience with your brand, but there are also things you can do to get more. Here are five easy tips to boost online shout-outs nowadays.
5 Awesome Tips to Boost Online Shout-Outs
A great way to get more social media mentions is to have a contest on social media. Reward people who use a specific hashtag attached to your company or like and share one of your posts. This also gets your name out in front of their followers, which could, in turn, expand your following.
Make sure the post you are asking people to share includes a unique image. Posts with images, especially with bright bold colors, stand out in people’s newsfeeds. Using red and orange typically works best because it creates a sense of urgency.
Once you have selected winners, create posts highlighting them. The winners will be excited to be featured and share those posts, too.
2. Have an event
Having an event is the perfect way to get some extra social media shout outs for your company. If done properly, you can get mentions before, during and after the event.
Advertise your event on and offline to build excitement for it. Include a hashtag for your event that users can refer to and use to interact with your community. Offer a chance to win free admission to the people who use the hashtag on social media.
At the event, set up a cool backdrop advertising your business with a box of props for people to take fun photos with. Share them online and give subjects a cool branded photo frame that includes a special hashtag specifically for photos from the event. When recipients browse the hashtag, they’ll be able to see their photo as well as those of their fellow event-goers — which can encourage them to post more photos of their own.
The easiest way to get more mentions is to engage with your audience more. Social media humanizes companies, making them appear more personable and approachable. To that end, let your personality shine through to build a connection with your audience.
Get creative with your posts. People are more likely to share a humorous post. Respond to people’s questions and comments in a timely fashion. Ask questions of your followers, too; this lets them know you are listening to them.
Use your analytics to determine when engagement is at its highest point, and create new posts at those times. Posting during a period when your audience is more likely to be online will boost your chances of engagement and mentions.
4. Be a guest speaker
Sign up to be a guest speaker at a conference or trade show. The event itself should have its own social media buzz, which will help expose your brand to more followers.
Encourage participants to submit questions to you via social media using a special hashtag prior to the event so you can have answers ready and create a buzz about your speech. Post a video of your presentation online and encourage viewers to submit their own questions that might not have been covered using the same hashtag.
Not only will delivering the speech gain some mentions, but it also will increase your social media following.
5. Create good content
Another easy way to get more mentions online is to create great content. Your audience is more likely to share content they find useful over self-promotions and product reviews.
Answer your audience’s questions with a comprehensive, in-depth analysis no one else is providing. Give them free resources to make life easier. Use custom images to break up the text and highlight key points. Your audience will appreciate your authenticity, and your relationship with them will grow.
It’s important to make your content easy to share. It could be really amazing, but if your readers can’t share it, it won’t matter. Put share buttons for social media platforms at the top of each post, and don’t forget to share it on your own pages.
Social media mentions are a great way to build your brand. Getting mentions is even harder than getting new followers because it requires them to associate their names with your products or services — but with the help of these tips, it should get a little easier.