another level on social mediaWhen I first started with social media, I was all about the follower counts on Twitter. I quickly learned that there were tools out there that could help me build a strong follower count very quickly. I quickly built follower counts over +20,000 on my personal account and 7,000 om my company account. The truth was, this was all a big waste of time. Even though numbers went up, the fact was no one cared about the information I shared, except for a few people. Those few people became the best connections I could have and they represented 1-5% of the total follower group. In addition, I was connecting with people, lets just say, if you saw them in person, you would never connect with them.

Next, I thought it was about having a presence on all social media platforms. I was on Twitter, Linkedin, GooglePlus, Pinterest, Tumblr, YouTube, Vine, Foursquare, and Medium. Having a presence on social media is important, but trying to have a presence on many platforms is not a smart idea and it leads to a very diluted message that no one really saw or understood. I learned that most of my clients are on Twitter, Linkedin, Instagram, Facebook, and Pinterest. Each platform is a bit different and has its pros and cons, but it is much easier to manage time on a few sites than spreading a message over several platforms. I also try to have a presence on GooglePlus, because its Google and its important for me to be in the loop with what Google is doing.

Most of the information above is probably something you already knew if you have been working with social media platforms over the past few years. Here are the other items that have been difference makers for me and I see these attributes in some of the super people I connect with on these sites.

Make sure you have a Blog Site!
You need to maintain your own blog site on your own property. This is really critical. People need to be able to find you and your company and know that your information can be found outside of social media platforms. This site needs to be updated on a regular basis and it needs to be mobile friendly.

Get Two ID’s – One Personal/Professional and One Company
Take the time to setup two separate accounts. You need to build up your personal brand and your company brand. Hopefully, the company id can be managed by a trusted representative in your company. People need to see that your company brand is active online. The company brand should have its own id on social media platforms and its own blog site. Also, consider setting up your own personal blog site and presence on social media. I prefer to lean towards being professional with a little personal items thrown in from time to time. The value here, is that people start making the connection of you as a person and you as a company representative. When people combine the two, it can send a confusing message about the company and the person, especially if the conversation gets personal and negative. Protect yourself and use two id’s.

Share other people’s content and add your thoughts
Too often, people like or retweet other people’s articles and that is all. Be different and take the time to tell people why you retweeted an article. Share your own comments about the article and show the writer and others that you really feel this article has valuable information. I really believe this is where the next level of social media is going. Providing recognition is really important in today’s world. Sharing comments is a way of showing others that the information you are reading is credible.

Social media and content marketing are coming together. You need both to have a successful experience. You need great content that is worth sharing and you need to know how to share that content online in a way that you can easily be found and heard. If you are not seeing results with your social media efforts, it may be time to step up your game. Stop doing some things and start doing other things.