SOCIAL MEDIA / FEB. 11, 2014
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How to Harness Social Media’s Conversational Features

Gone are the days when one-way-only promotional messages were posted on social media platforms and companies were just throwing content and walking away. Effective business consumer interaction with its conversational messages has already been established as a key trend, in today’s social media landscape. Companies embrace innovative digital marketing tools, to make sure they are accessible and responsive, to any feedback coming from their followers.

Blogging, email lists, forums, Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, Google+, Pinterest, Instagram, Flickr and numerous other channels, allow individual consumers to rapidly connect with many other consumers and amplify their voice. Sometimes to the extent of having just as great an impact as the public relations arm of a major corporation.

The Pros of Business Consumer Interaction

Harnessing the conversational nature of social media is not an easy endeavor as it takes a lot of effort, resources and time to measure its effectiveness. However, there are several benefits when it comes to taking advantage of conversational messages on social networks. First, your product acquires a personal and authentic feel. Second, your customers will become loyal brand ambassadors, by endorsing your products through word-of-mouth. What’s more, your company will not be perceived as just another firm that only cares about profit and you will be able to enhance your credibility, by reacting in real time.  

How to Make the Most of Social Media to Harness Conversations

Here are some practical tips on how to make the most of social media’s conversational properties:

#1 Get Personal on Twitter

Use Twitter Vsnap to distribute personalised videos to your Twitter followers. This tactic will encourage viewers to connect with you further, while keeping them constantly engaged. To personalise your video, examine your target audience’s Twitter bio to see if something interesting jumps out and use this to design your message. You can also use this video to answer a question someone posed about your company, or thank someone who became a new follower, or shared your content.

#2 Use Pinterest to Invite Others to Pin on Your Boards

If you are using Pinterest, connect with other users to expand your network. Make sure you interact with other users of the Pinterest Community, by commenting on and repinning their pins. While you’re at it, follow users’ boards that fit your company’s industry, so you have an updated stream of related content every time you login.

#3 Use Google+ Circles, Communities and Hangouts to Create Valuable Conversations

Create and share Google+ Circles your followers will find useful. Your company can become a resource for users looking for more people to follow, related to your company’s industry. This approach also enables your company to connect with the people in the Circle you’ve created and build your audience. They may see the Circle you’ve made and decide to share it on their own profile.

Google+ Pages also help you build up a loyal fan base. Your customers can show their appreciation towards your product with ratings and reviews. By using the +1 button, users can endorse your content, to their circles and re-share your posts across the web.

Also, with Google+ Hangouts, you can start a video chat with up to nine people. This is another great opportunity, to connect with your audience.

#4 Use an Interactive Blog

Finally, having an attractive and well-organised blog is vital, not only for providing your business with a platform to communicate when your firm’s reputation is threatened, but it can also serve as the foundation, for integrating all of other social media networks.

All in all, social media has brought a new dynamic into play. It has changed the way individuals interact with each other, by offering them a forum to share their thoughts, opinions, passions and experiences. On top of this, it has given companies a greater opportunity to listen to the voices of their customers and strategically react to it. Make sure you enlist the best tools to interact with your audience, to promote your company’s strategic targets.

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