WHY COMPANIES SHOULD HANDLE SOCIAL MEDIA LIKE DATING AND RELATIONSHIPS
By Muthuri Kinyamu

I know the title of this article arouses curiosity but am about to prove why you should handle and approach your
community on social media like you do with a girl/boy in the dating scene. I happen to have spent the weekend home alone, phone off, no Twitter, no TV, no laptop- nothing; basically cut out off the world! Well I was having that “ME” time to reflect upon many things when my thoughts drifted to my social life…dating and such kind of things!

The more I thought about it, the more my mind wandered to social media and how companies often try to build relation- ships. So I engaged my thoughts to come up with this article! So in this article I will explore similarities and lessons social media managers can pick up from the dating scene to guide them in managing brands on social media. This will be pretty simple so here’s how to go about it!

1. KNOW WHERE TO SEARCH.
For companies you need to know where your customers hang out, which platforms are they active on. Are you targeting the 18-24 market? Where are they? Are you looking for the 25-35 age group or the older ones? So at this stage you need to identify the social networking sites where to focus your social media marketing efforts.

2. TAKE THE MOVE!
• Be bold – Don’t be afraid to share your thoughts, opinions and ideas with her. On social media don’t be neutral! Be a rebel or the hero. Neutral content/discussion doesn’t arouse engagement! Be very keen as you don’t want the girl to curse meeting you same thing, if your content isn’t great on social media, people will leave!

• Post less –Sharing everything on your mind or what you come across will push her away so is the community you have on social media! You don’t keep calling her and texting all day so the same works with social media! If you’re pushing serious content tweeting and posting in the morning may get you RT’s. Use the 1/9 tweet rule –Those who only share their own content are transparent and audiences online look at that as purely selfish and switch off quickly.

Get in the habit of sharing 9 tweets not about you or your business for every post about you or your business. This way you don’t spam people; the same thing applies to dating- you don’t talk endlessly about yourself! Do less of push marketing, no “Me, me, me’ kind of content.

3. SO WHAT NEXT AFTER THE FIRST DATE?
After you’ve went out for dinner with her, you don’t ask to take her to your house! Back to social media, once you get people to like or follow you, you welcome them, thank them then immerse them with content about your business and what you offer. You aren’t asking for a sale, you want to first build the relationship, give value, good content, keep your promises- when people ask for information, you give it on time, when you promise to call them, do it! After the first date, maybe you schedule the next one, you want to see her often right? So with social media, you may ask your followers to also LIKE your Facebook page and vice versa, check or subscribe to your channel

4. YOUR REPUTATION- WHAT DO OTHER PEOPLE SAY ABOUT YOU?
At this level if you had done your search in the right place, done step two and three well, a girl will ask her or your friends about you. Check your Face- book profile, ask your colleagues and people who know you more about you! She simply wants to get an opinion from people who know you before she makes a decision whether there’s a future in what you have initiated. With social media, a customer will search more about your business online, ask around for recommendations, also ask friends about your product or service or maybe read product reviews online. So this is where you monitor your brand mentions, address inquiries, read reviews and up your reputation management!

5. TAKE HER TO BED- CALL FOR ACTION!
Most probably after step four a girl will have made up her mind but you still have a chance to clean up your name! You know it guys, how we say we’ve changed, we’ve quit alcohol and we’re no longer players! With business, most likely your prospective buyer will have 2 or 3 options now; with recommendations to try out product B from company C. However you still have a chance to explain the benefits, value proposition and the uniqueness of your product/service. Address the fears the prospect has and do it authentically and in a genuine manner. Ensure you give value to spark initiative and encourage action!

The author is a Kenyan Entrepreneur | Social Media
strategist | SocialPro | Passionate about marketing. | @kenyanmarketer muthurikinyamu.blogspot.com

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