It seems everyone is on social media these days, from the president to your cousin’s brand new puppy. In a society where everyone spends their days glued to their phones and absorbs their information in a short 140 characters, you have to consider creating a social media presence for your firm. Word of mouth marketing has long been crucial in obtaining new clients. In recent years, though, the “word” has largely gone digital.
So what does your accounting firm need to do to leverage social media for marketing and client acquisition? Here are some tips for developing your presence on the major social media platforms for optimal effectiveness.
Twitter is a staple social media platform for many companies, but very few are using it to its full potential. Often, companies create a presence to share links and promotions, but act as if they are speaking into a vacuum. This will not yield results. The key to Twitter is responsiveness and engagement. Respond to tags, retweet (share) useful information from others in the industry, get involved in organized chats and join conversations that allow you to share your expertise.
Facebook is also best used for engagement and interaction. You have more freedom on this platform with higher character limits, so get creative! Facebook recently introduced “Facebook Live,” and it’s one of the best features for engagement. It allows you to have a real-time interactive conversation with your followers. Offer some Q&A time, discuss events in the news, or settle in for a fun chat to show of your company’s personality. Keep it interesting and they’ll keep coming back for more!
LinkedIn is going to be your most valuable social media asset. It will give you an easy, digital way to network with other industry players, as well as a means to attract top talent. Like the other social media platforms, the name of the game is engagement. Create a full company profile to connect with your employees; this is also where you can post job openings.
Anyone looking at your firm’s company page will likely find their way to profile pages of leadership and employees. Ensure that you have a complete profile, and encourage your employees to do the same. Connect with industry leaders, potential employees, and respond to those who reach out with questions. In addition, publish LinkedIn Pulse articles (similar to blog posts) that spark discussion and interest in your expertise. Pulse articles are a great way to position yourself as a thought leader, which only boosts the reputation of your company.
Take time to look at the analytics provided with your social media accounts to determine which techniques are most effective for you. For instance, if you jump on Twitter every week and share an article on Friday during lunch hour and receive little interaction, but your Monday morning “cup of joe” memes on Facebook are liked and shared regularly, see how changing your approach and timing will change your results. There are helpful articles all over the Internet that will tell you what works best, but by looking at your company’s analytics, you can determine the right formula for you. If you find that social media is driving new business, you may consider hiring a social media manage to spearhead your efforts.
Create a Company-wide Social Media Policy
One of the most important things about bringing your business into the social media world is to set up a usage policy for the company. Having clear rules about who can share, what can be shared and how responses should be handled is important to your company’s reputation. Ensure that employees have a clear understanding of intellectual property law.
Social media is an ever-evolving entity and creating your firm’s presence isn’t a one-time task. Though you will need to create time in your firm’s daily schedule to update platforms, connect with clients, and establish yourselves as industry leaders, in the long run that time will pay huge dividends.