6 Ways to Leverage the Power of Social Media
No doubt, social media is making a lot of noise, but without knowing how to harness the power of these highly influential platforms, social media is just that - NOISE. There are a number of ways to leverage the power of your social media profile, helping expand your reach and encourage engagement with your accounting firm.
1. Amass an Audience
Setting up accounts on Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter is a step in the right direction for building a strong network. However, posting content to a social page devoid of connections and followers is pointless. Without a captive audience, your post and insights will go unheard, unseen, and will eventually waste away - you are essentially wasting your time.
Many business owners set up social accounts, but don’t know the first thing about growing a following on each channel. Start out by connecting with your friends and existing clients. Invite, follow, and message everyone you know.
Next, make new connections with industry contacts in your target audience. For instance, if you specialize in construction accounting and tax services, consider adding construction business owners to your LinkedIn networking circle.
Not only are you more likely to engage with a prospect if you're connected, these types of connections are a direct pipeline for discovering trends, gaining insight, exchanging information, and sharing your expertise in a particular accounting niche.
Industry connections help you stay in-the-know on changes within your niche, and help further your position as an accounting specialist in your particular area.
2. Build Brand Awareness
Social media provides yet another opportunity to project your firm’s brand image and messaging. Branding is more than a logo or color palette. Branding defines you as a company and includes your firm's mission, core values, and attributes that set you apart from the competition.
On social media, branding is developed in layers beginning with your company profile. Start out by uploading a square format logo for your profile image, and use a cover image representative of your firm and services. Make sure your logo, color palette, and messaging is universal across all social media platforms, as this aids in brand recognition.
Consistent branding also extends to the actual content you are sharing on social media. When choosing content, ensure your posts are aligned with your services, core values and messaging. A consistent brand voice supports the image you want your brand to portray.
Build a strong brand by pushing out consistency across all client touch points, including social media.
3. Engage Your Target Market
As stated earlier, social media has emerged at the forefront of the digital engagement frenzy, so go ahead and get engaged! Polls, surveys, statistics, and newsworthy tidbits invite audience participation and strike up conversations.
As the name implies, this is your chance to get to know your audience on a direct interaction level. Unlike conventional media, social media channels provide two-way communication. Respond to comments and questions to keep the lines of communication open.
4. Increase Website Traffic
Social media posts are a great tool for driving traffic to your website. Sharing relevant content from your website to your social media pages is an efficient way to acquire visitors to your website. Use blogs, articles, and videos as content “carrots”.
5. Humanize Your Business
A key reason why social media channels are so successful is because they foster two-way conversations with a target audience. People are more apt to engage if they feel like they are talking to people, not a faceless business. When posting content, include photos of people, including staff and clients. This tactic provides an immediate personal connection.
Some other “humanization” practices include regularly sharing office updates, special awards, client testimonials, or and community events your firm is involved in. Remember, your followers want a window into your firm. They want to see the culture of your company and staff. It’s a look behind the scenes.
Social media embraces creating dialogue and nurturing relationships. Create conversational posts as if you are talking with a person.
6. Recruit Employees
Social media can also be a helpful recruitment tool when you are seeking to add new employees. According to Glassdoor, 79 percent of job applicants use social media in their job search, and about 70 percent of employers use social media to screen job candidates. A whopping 73 percent of Millennials found their last job through social media. It's an excellent way to showcase your firm and your company culture. You can specify what you look for in an employee and screen potential job candidates.
If leveraged correctly, social media has a cornucopia of benefits for your accounting firm. Some additional fruits include establishing yourself as a thought leader, managing your reputation, and generating more leads.