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Loyd Ford

Boredom's A Social Media Sin


Believe it or not, most people fall prey to social media charms because social media can seem like instant validation. In reality, it is often a mirror and anyone who uses social media to connect with a specific audience should be careful to avoid seeking validation themselves and stay focused on bringing value for the audience they most want to attract for their purposes. To do this, you should make sure you are busy making your content vibrant, listener-validating, and interesting in your local market. How do you best do that?

1. Communicate with the audience you most want to attract in your local market. Make sure you listen to what your listeners tell you in social media. Its easy to be all about me, but the trick in social media is to make sure your focus is like that of a servant. To really do that well, you must listen first.
2. Keep your posts short and visual. The world has changed and nowhere is this more apparent than in the Facebook and Twitter worlds. Great photos or video will help make your content rich if your focus is right, but to make things always interesting, you must focus on the quality of the listener benefits you deliver in your posts. Make sure you are focused on either making them feel or look smart for sharing, that you are sharing funny, or that you are sharing visuals that are important or specifically interesting to your audience.
3. Hold on there with all that promotion, partner. You should have your content strategy fully developed into percentage by type of content with the individuals who post on behalf of the station. This keeps you interesting and (in case you dont know) all contesting all the time is.not interesting. In fact, that is often the path to unplugging any real listener engagement for your brand. What are you doing to engage local communities of all types that fall into the life group of your format and the attractiveness of your local radio brand?  Are any of your personalities passionately engaged in local causes important to your listeners?  How is your local celebrity content?  (National is easy, right?)
4. Ask questions, work to engage your listeners based on what they are passionate about. Asking questions and encouraging followers to comment on your posts can energize your influence among others. This can be critical in exploding impact. The more back and forth contact you have with individual local passionate listeners, the more you will find your true influence with them grows; and transferring influence with their friends, family, and co-workers will also increase.
5. Make it easy for listeners. You think your stuff is easy? Is it truly easy for listeners to follow your blog? Can they easily connect with you via email? Facebook? How quickly can listeners connect with your social media from your website? If it isnt so easy that people who have never seen a website can understand quickly how to connect EVERYWHERE with you, you.have..issuesofeasy connectivity. Fix them if you want to grow more successful in social media and in real life.
6. Dont overdo it and wear everyone else out. Its about knowing how to be fun at the party without being the crazy pest. Some of this goes back to having a variety of content elements in your strategy. However, you shouldnt post just to post. Thats like making small talk that no one is interested in. B-o-r-i-n-g. Give thought to what kind of content you focus your attention on in the case of any individual social media platform (always thinking about the listeners you most want to attract not everyone). Dont post things that have little or no value.

At the end of the day, whatever you do in social media will only matter to your brand if you increase either benefit to the community, audience connectivity, ratings, or revenue. It is about your brand. It all starts with listening and focusing your attention with a strategy to accomplish specific results for your brand.

You can do a lot in social media to benefit your local media brand. Most of the large broadcast companies are avoiding local. They are often using tricks to try to fool advertisers into the value of their national footprint. Meanwhile this actually gives you significant opportunity to be hyper-local and very focused on local listeners to gain specific benefits for your brand by helping them. Do that and you will be pleasedbut it all begins with the right strategy. Do you have one? Start with the six points above and brainstorm what is possible for your brand in your market. I promise that doing these things and developing your social media strategy to help your brand by helping the listeners you most want to attract will make you a lot less boringand more effective.

Loyd Ford is the direct marketing, ratings and social media strategist for Americalist Direct Marketing and has programmed very successful radio brands in markets of all sizes, including KRMD AM & FM in Shreveport, and WSSL and WMYI in Greenville, WKKT in Charlotte and WBEE in Rochester, NY. Learn more about Loyd here: Get his radio-social media content sent directly to your smart phone or email for free here: Reach out to Loyd via e-mail HERE.  Visit his Facebook radio social media page HERE.

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