Or maybe it’s a two-way freeway with traffic going a hundred miles an hour, depending on the size of your community.
If you’re promoting an event through social media, the most important thing to realize is that all communication is now two-way. The second most important thing is that when promoting an event make sure you have an actual event that is worth of that conversation.
That means bringing interesting, compelling and valuable content to the table. Are your speakers engaging? Do they have a good reputation in your community? Do they have good content that your audience is hungry for?
Often, the best way to find out what topics are at the top-of-mind for your audience is to ask them directly. Which is where social media comes in. Using Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn you can follow the topics of conversation to find out what pushes buttons, and ask questions to clarify and uncover more topics. By creating quick surveys you can narrow down the interest to more finite topics.
And of course, ask for feedback. People are more than happy to give honest feedback. As much as we connect on social media, there is a barrier between one person and another which allows them to offer feedback that is often more honest than if they were sitting across the lunch table from you (of course, that depends on the individual). When comments come, be prepared to respond quickly – there’s nothing worse in social media than waiting too long to respond. Social media is ‘real-time’ and if you’re not engaging in real-time, you can be assured that your community IS communicating in real-time. If someone posts a negative comment on your Facebook page, don’t respond negatively or defensively back to them. And never delete a negative comment unless it contains profanity or is entirely inappropriate. Deleting comments makes people think you have something to hide or that you have a thin skin – neither of which will endear you to your community.
The best thing about social media is that you have access to current thinking on all of the topics that are important to you and your company. And sometimes that’s the worst thing, too! But take those negative comments with a grain of salt and realize that in a sense you’re getting free research that will help you correct deficiencies in your products or services.