By now most brands have established social media is beneficial to their bottom line. Social media is low cost, easy to implement and nearly everyone uses it. However, these advantages have pitfalls and developing a social media following can be challenging.

It’s important to follow certain guidelines if you want to set yourself apart and attract an audience that will truly help you build your brand.

social media following

1. Narrow Your Focus. With so many social media sites available, it’s easy to spread yourself too thin. When it was just Facebook and Twitter, it was a lot simpler.

Now Instagram, LinkedIn, Tumblr, Pinterest, Google+ and other smaller-but-growing competitors are becoming popular. However, you can only maintain an effective presence on so many platforms.

To build an effective social media following, you need to figure out which sites work best for your business. Perhaps a visually-based site like Pinterest or Instagram are a natural fit.If you’re engaged in business-to-business marketing, a presence on LinkedIn is a must.

On the other hand, LinkedIn might not do that much for a company that sells mainly to retail consumers. You should identify a few sites where your time and investment will reap the greatest rewards.

2. Provide Quality Content; Don’t Oversell! One of the biggest mistakes businesses make on social media sites is spending too much time selling and hyping their products. People spend time on these sites for socializing and entertainment.

If your page and updates are mostly links to sales pages or simply telling everybody how great you are, they will quickly tire of it.

It’s best to keep an informal, light approach to your posts. Posting useful information or links to helpful resources can give people a good reason to check out your pages or tweets.

3. Monitor Your Accounts and Be Present. Social media is interactive. It’s essential for you to not only post regularly to your accounts but to carefully monitor any feedback you get. If you get questions or complaints, answer them promptly.

You should post items that invite responses. Ask provocative questions that relate to your industry. If you don’t maintain a steady presence on your social media sites, you can’t expect your audience to maintain their interest.

How have you developed your social media following? Let us know in the comments!

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