When we humans fall ill, we know almost immediately when it’s time to visit a doctor. But social media is a more complicated beast, and oftentimes, it takes a second opinion to know when your brand is due for a health overhaul. At Renegade, we offer a social media audit for exactly this purpose. If your company’s social media has experienced any of the following seven symptoms, it’s high time for a visit to the social physician — and we know just the place.
You haven’t reconciled social media with your business objectives
Whether you’re a mom-and-pop bakery just getting started, or a giant insurance company with established social channels, social media should be working for you. And you may be surprised to learn that it can further your business in very specific, targeted ways. Is your company trying to reach a younger (or older) demographic? Social can help. Are you trying to get more “seats” in seats? Social can help here, too. But if your brand is just online to be online, then you may be putting the cart before the horse. An audit can help determine the gaps, as well as the opportunities, that exist for your business through social media.
Your channel strategies have gone to pasture
In a similar vein, let’s say that social media has already been a boon for your business, but your day-to-day channel strategies are beginning to tread water and are in danger of sinking completely. Do you copy-and-paste the same content to every channel? Are you posting daily just to post…something? Do your content buckets have holes in them, so to speak? Each platform has its own language and behaviors, and your brand might as well be speaking Mongolian in Costa Rica if you haven’t adjusted your content to fit each channel. In this case, a re-assessment of your channel strategies can help identify which of your practices need a reboot.
Facebook has left you in the lurch
Now, for the world of Facebook: organic reach is down, paid reach is up. The platform and its mysterious algorithm have been making it increasingly difficult for brands and their content to reach consumers organically (read: without spending money). If your company is one of the many that have invested a large majority of their social efforts in Facebook but are now feeling the squeeze of decreased engagement, it may be time to step back and take another look at the social networking landscape. There may be another platform — or several — more suited to helping you reach your business objectives.
The competition is catching up
Unlike everyone’s favorite slow-and-steady fable, in the story of social media, the tortoise doesn’t always win the race. If your closest competitor has lapped you on any platform — whether that entails more engaging content, better reviews, a bigger fan base or faster rate of growth — there’s no better time than now to ensure that your social media strategies help your business be as agile as possible.
Big changes are on the horizon
So The New York Times just wrote a big piece on your business or a celebrity became a vocal fan of your product. Or maybe business is simply booming and you’re running out of hours in the day to keep up on social. Maybe the growth is of a different nature, and your company will experience a major brand change or merger in the coming months. Figuring out the social media strategy for one brand is task enough for many companies, but if you foresee a big change on the horizon — whether it’s a merger or major brand repositioning — your social media will need to follow suit.
You want to launch an employee advocacy program
Some of your company’s biggest advocates are just an arm’s reach away — literally. Your employees can be a powerful voice on behalf of your company and are an untapped resource when it comes to everything from sharing and creating original content to filling job openings and finding new business. But is it even feasible for your company to embark on this sort of program? Would your current social strategy support it? An audit can help answer these questions.
Your customer service and marketing are in a tug-of-war
If your company has an active customer service department, you probably already know that social media can be both a benefit and a burden. When your customers have complaints or questions, they’re probably not picking up the phone or sending an email to your customer service department — they’re turning to social media first. According to Nielsen, around half of American consumers use social media to contact customer service. And it’s no wonder — it’s fast, public and puts more pressure on your company to respond in a timely manner. But are your social media marketing efforts being compromised by customer service? If you’re spending more time — and content real estate — putting out fires on Twitter and Facebook than earning new business, it’s time to take another look at your social media strategy.