In our last post we discussed how to build community through in-person connection. Today we will review effective strategies to build a digital community. There are three key pillars: social media, email marketing, and blogging. Why are these important? Digital methods allow you to promote your business, extend your reach, and tell your story to bond with others.
Part 2: Your Digital Community Connection.
1. How to Succeed at Social Media
Think of your social media channels as a scrapbook where you can mix together content such as quotes, inspirations, stories, and events. Post to Facebook Business Page 3-5 times per week and Instagram once a day, whenever possible. Assign someone in the office to be the “storyteller” and capture storytelling moments to collect and use throughout the week. Use the Facebook “scheduling” tool to plan your content in advance, and consider the use of Hootsuite as a scheduling tool as you begin to post more often. Canva is a wonderful resource for creating graphics for social media.
- Engagement: Post, respond, and follow. If you have a group of clients or colleagues that can generate content for you, to augment your posts, then share and tag them whenever possible.
- Establish and adhere to your brand guidelines: Consistent imagery and messaging creates trust and helps to maintain expectations.
- Be clear and concise: If you were a magazine editor, what would you put in a post. Curate to be authentic for your business.
2. Email List: A Precious Marketing Tool
Once you have an email list built out, this pillar is particularly effective for storytelling. It creates the opportunity for you to position yourself/your business as a thought leader in whatever category you choose. It also gives you a captive audience for any message you are conveying. Even if your emails are not always opened by those on your list, seeing you in their inbox will keep you top of mind. How to grow your list?
- Ask: May seem simple, but many times we can overlook simply asking for the thing we want. When you’re at a networking event or any social function where you are running into prospects, ask for their contact information or business card.
- Offer a freebie or discount: Everyone loves a good giveaway. And this type of strategy can be very effective when you have little brand awareness. It gives people an incentive to connect with your business.
- Send good content: Think about what your readers would find useful, interesting, and insightful, as it relates to them. The more unique and informative, the more likely you are to build a loyal audience.
3. Blogging: This is often one of the most painful marketing areas for any business owner. The average blog post takes about 3 hours to write. So why bother? This type of content has so many uses, brand awareness, community building, credibility, self-expression, education and SEO. Focus on what makes you and your business stand out. Make it personal and bring your personality into your writing. A blog is just talking. Lastly, to increase your amount of content, get others to blog for you. A colleague in the same therapy or one who is treating a similar condition that you focus on in your practice. Feature backlinks to their site in your posts, and request they do the same.
For more ideas on how to run a stronger business while focusing on your clients, join our community and start collaborating with your peers today!