Improve Your Social Media Results Today: 5 Tips

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Good morning internet fans! Ryan Perry Simple Biz Support. Today is Thursday, December 9th. Therefore, it is social media… Today is not Thursday, it’s Wednesday. It is Social Media Wednesday then. It is December 9th, at least I got that part right. And I do have Sarah Giometti with Provaro Marketing on the other side. Good morning, Sara.

Sarah Giometti: Good morning Ryan, how are you?

RP: I’m a day ahead apparently, but today is only Wednesday, so we’re going to talk about some fun social media stuff. We’re going to throw a little psychology into the mix and give people some real helpful tips that actually have some science behind it versus just some guy’s opinion.

SG: Right. And we’re going to look at some ways where you kind of go after the emotional side of your followers and consumers versus the data side of it. So even though it is through science, it’s targeting their emotional reaction to help improve your social media results.

RP: Alright. Perfect. We have… Or I should say you have a list of five items that you want to talk about so why don’t we go ahead and start with the first one and then roll down the list.

SG: First, people like stories over stats. So instead of telling them that 95% of your customers are happy with product ABC, show them how product ABC has made them happy. Tell a story. People want to get engaged in a story, because then, they feel like they can relate if there’s a story behind it. So instead of just spouting out stats about why your product’s great, talk about how it’s improved your client… I think that’s another point actually that improvements but tell the story about why people like your product and get people to engage in an emotional level versus giving them stats about why your product is so awesome.

RP: Right. I think that’s the… What is it? Features versus benefits type of thing. If you just say, “Look, it’s got surround sound and it’s got two amplifiers and seven speakers and on and on this. Dedicated sub woofer.” It’s like, “Okay, that’s great.” But if you can go, “Look, if you ever listen to Star Wars in a real built studio with the right equipment and the right sound, I mean just everything comes out and you got the surround sound going. Completely different experience.” And I’m not selling that one very well because I’m not a audio guy. But hopefully you kind of get the idea of what I’m talking about.

SG: Right. And you could also look at when they… For charity donations, instead of talking about a region, how poor they are and how hungry they are, if you single out a single individual and you tell their story, people are more emotionally engaged and willing to donate for that person’s story versus. Because you know what, if it’s too broad, we can’t quite wrap our heads around it or it’s not compelling enough to… Trying to compel people to take and action. So, you want to narrow down your story to a single individual. What’s their story behind the product or service that they’re using that you have and what’s the story of where they came from and how it helped them. That’ll emotionally engage people and go, “Oh, I need that too.”

RP: Right. I think the key word that I really liked from that is the emotional engagement. Even if it’s social media and I think people a lot of times get attached when it’s social media because I’m just typing stuff out on a computer, still there’s a human being, there’s a person on the other end that’s hopefully listening to what you have to say. And so the more you can emotionally connect with that person, I think the more likely it is that they’re going to do what you want them to do.

SG: Right. And that ties right into the second topic that we want to talk about or the second point and it’s a benefits over it’s information. So you’re talking about with the Sarah equipment, you want to give them the experience. What’s in it for them? It really is this one. What’s in it for your customer if they buy your product or service and not the line item, line item, I can talk about how I’ll grow your social media following and get people on Facebook. I have to tell them what the end results is of that. Why they need that community on social media? How will it help their brand? And how it will help their customers ultimately. And so you want to think of it that way too. Whatever product or service you’re selling, what’s in it for them? And think of it in kind of in a selfish way. Think, even though it makes the customer sound selfish, you want to think in those terms of what’s in it for them? Why should they bother looking at your information, following you and engaging with you, and eventually buying from you?

RP: Right. That’s the old WIIFM. What’s in it for me? And I think the biggest problem with a lot of business owners is they have that mentality. However, that mentality is about them. It’s like, “Hey, you know I got the best product. I got the best service. And of course, people are going to want to buy from me but that’s what we call from a marketing point of view, that’s the inside perception. Within your business, you know that you do a great job, you know that you provide a great service. But that outside perception may not have that same feeling and it may be a credibility thing or it could be the fact that you’re always spouting off about things that are important to you as a business owner which yes, is important. But if you’re trying to connect with people, emotionally, especially through a digital interface like Twitter or Facebook which really dehumanizes the event because we’re not able to communicate face-to-face, then it’s really important that we be very selfless and serve others. So it’s a the difference between having a client and a customer. The terminology is completely different there.

SG: Right, and so you want to change your mindset of, if you were going to buy the product, what’s in it for you, and then switch it to what’s in it for them, because we are in such a fast instant society. As you said, digital dehumanizes it a bit, it’s a little bit of a smoke screen in front of people that you can kind of pretend to be someone you’re not if you want to. And it’s something that you really want to make sure that you’re listening to your customers and doing your best to give them what they want. And so it’s that… Make sure your highlighting the benefits of your products and services versus the features of it and you’ll really see the engagement grow.

RP: Okay. Perfect. And number three then?

SG: Social proof. People if… For instance Ryan and I are also friends, not just colleagues and if it popped up in my newsfeed that he liked and reviewed and trusted and had a great experience at, say, a local restaurant, I’m going to be more likely to go try it because somebody that I know and trust and have a good relationship with reviewed it, and so it’s worth my time to go try it out because it’s less risky. So you really… So this goes to getting testimonials and social proof and reviews online from your customers, because then you can also leverage that, especially, on social media if you’re running ads. You can run ads that target the friends of your followers and they’re going to see that their friends like your business, and maybe that they’ve reviewed you, and it helps up your credibility and their trust level really quickly by leveraging that. And so you want to make sure that you’re getting those testimonials from your clients.

RP: Yeah and from the social side, depending on your business, Yelp is a huge company and all they do is create social proof. I can’t tell you how many people, especially when it comes to restaurants, they’ll go straight to Yelp before they go to Google or anything else, to actually check out reviews. And with social proof, social proof doesn’t have to be five stars all the time. It’s okay to have three stars and an one star experience, depending on how you respond to it and if as a business owner actually responding to it.

RP: I’m really surprised at how many business owners don’t pay attention to review sites such as Yelp. People leave positive comments, negative comments, and there’s no response from the business owner. When you go in there as a business owner, you have the ability to take a negative situation and turn it into a positive. And when you’re able to successfully turn a negative into a positive, that outweighs any five star review you’ll ever receive, because when things are going well it’s real easy to get the five stars, but the reality is, if you’re in business long enough you’re going to get the three star, the two star, maybe even a one star, and the big question is in that moment of frustration or things not going well how do you respond and deal with it? And that shows more character than when things are going good and you’re just getting the five stars.

SG: Right, and I’ve had so many customers be worried that they’re going to get a whole bunch of fake reviews and that just isn’t reality for most small businesses. Though you don’t have to worry about that and there are ways to combat that if it does actually happen. Don’t be afraid of getting the reviews, asking for the reviews and possibly getting somewhere between a one and a three star, because most people when they’re reading reviews, if you have a whole bunch of four and five star reviews, and you have this random one or two star review, people are going to… We are critical thinkers for the most part. We’re going to look at that one review and go, “A couple of things possibly happened.” One, that person is just nuts and nothing will please them, or two, your business might have had an off day. Big deal. When 95% of your reviews are really good, it’s not going to have that much sway over people, and like Ryan said, on something like Yelp, which, total disclaimer, don’t ever pay for that advertising. You don’t need it. You’re still going to come up with the results just fine. You don’t need to spend the money with them and get locked into their really hard to get out of contracts.

SG: But back to the reviews, if you do get a negative one, you can respond both publicly and privately on something like Yelp. You can put a very generic, public one out there, “We really appreciate your feedback.” Make sure it doesn’t sound canned, but, “We really appreciate your feedback we’re going to send you a private message to see if we can help work this out and invite you back for a better experience.” In the private one you can offer them some incentive to get them to come back through the door. Don’t ever ask them for an updated review. Just bring them back through the door, and give them a better experience, so that naturally they go back to Yelp and do an update of the review saying that it was a totally different experience. So you really need to pay attention to that.

RP: Yeah, definitely. The other thing when it comes to social proof, me being a big fan of video, because it’s a great way to convey a story is, if you can ever get a client to do a video testimonial, that is a very, very powerful tool. So many times you see the text testimonial and it says “Marie M.” I have no idea who Marie M is, I have no idea if that’s a real person or if it’s a made-up testimonial, but when you get it in video, I can see that it’s a real person, but I also get to see the emotion behind the review. And when you get the right person doing testimonials for you, video testimonials, it can be very powerful. We’ve got about two minutes left, and I think we’ve got four and five to hit.

SG: We do, and so the next was influencers who affect the credibility. So if you have the opportunity to connect up with an influencer in your field, and they have good credibility and a good, drawing a total blank. It’s not credibility. Crap…

RP: Crap and credibility. As an example, if you were, if Donald Trump was in your sphere of influence and praising you, and then all of a sudden he did something really stupid and it affected his credibility, it’s going to affect your credibility because you’re saying, “Hey, this guy’s legit, and he’s praising me.”

SG: Right, so you want to make sure that you vet out whoever you’re thinking of doing a partnership with if they’re an influencer in your field, and if they’ve got the good credibility and good… I still can’t think of the word I’m thinking of, but if the community really likes them and they’ve got really good, a good community, good engagement, and nothing negative in their background that, because if their negative is going to affect you. So you really want to make sure they’ve got a positive influence on their community online and people think highly of them. But that could really benefit you if you have the opportunity to partner with them because it will grow your following and your exposure and your community.

RP: Yep, definitely. And then number five?

SG: Scarcity creates demand. We all know that we all want what we can’t have. It’s just human nature. So if you have a product that is limited edition… All these things work. Limited edition, a sale for only twelve hours, there’s only so many that were going to be made, or a popular product is going away and discontinued. All of those things, if you can create scarcity around a popular product, that can create a frenzy and engagement, and you, obviously, don’t want to do it too often because then it just looks like a marketing ploy, but if you can create a form of scarcity, like a short sale, twelve hours, six hours, then you could hopefully create, through that, create quick engagement and people sharing with everybody, “Oh, you need to get this before it’s gone,” kind of thing. So think about that especially, with the holiday season coming up. Is there some sort of sale, short sale that you can do that would create some sort of scarcity and demands?

RP: Yep. Perfect. Alright. So those are five different ways that you can improve your interaction and credibility on social media. Like I said at the beginning, they’re all based on psychology, so there’s a lot of proof behind how the brain works and responds to things. So, you know, if you find five overwhelming, take one of ’em that you’re like, “Oh, okay. I know I can do this with it,” and just do that one thing today. That one little change today could make a drastic difference today, tomorrow, six weeks, whatever. I was going to say something, I forget what it is, but it is the end of the show, I guess. So Sarah, this is where I said adieu, it’s been fun. We will see you again next week on Social Media Wednesday.

SG: Thanks Ryan, it’s always a pleasure to be here.

RP: Yep. Perfect. Alright everybody, hope you’re having a great Wednesday. It’s a little rainy and cold here in California, but that’s the way we like it in the winter time. Take care and we’ll see you next Wednesday.


About the Author:

Ryan Perry is the founder and CEO of Simple Biz Support, Inc. Ryan started video blogging in 2009 as an alternative to written blogs to create visibility and credibility online. During the workweek, he enjoys helping small business owners harness the power of video to grow their companies. On the weekends, he enjoys hiking and searching out waterfalls throughout the state of California.

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