In our previous post, Sample Social Internal Social Media Policy, we took a look at a sample internal social media policy. In this post, we return to the subject of engagement and how to technically support it.
Technical Support for Engagement
In addition to the general policy framework we’ve been describing, you’ll need to think about the technical framework for your community. If you are using existing social media sites, be sure you understand all that the sites offer to support your goals. If you are creating your own community, either as part of your existing Website or as a standalone social media community, you’ll need to decide which of the following technical functionality you require.
- Rich media — Rich media refers to a wide variety of technical capabilities such as the ability for members to control the format of their posts (bold, italic, add hyperlinks), add videos or podcasts, participate in games, and upload documents
- Widgets — Widgets are little pieces of functionality that allow you to embed features from other sites into your community site, such as LinkedIn polls, Facebook Ads, members’ Twitter feeds, and so forth
- Landing page calls to action — Your main page may be the place most of your prospects land. You may also want to create special pages, called landing pages, for visitors who may come to your site via a Google search, from Facebook, or from a partner site. Consider crafting language and calls to action specific to these arriving visitors. You’ll also want to offer opportunities for them to register for the site, and for your newsletter as well as:
- Creating special videos
- Offering coupons and special materials
- Offering free trials or free demos
- Enable “send to friend,” call us, talk to an expert, and so on.
- Thank you pages — Whenever someone takes an action, send them to a thank you page. This is an opportunity to further engage with them and keep them on your site. Use the landing page techniques described above to offer them more value and entice them to stay
- E-mail auto replies — If visitors fill out a form to get something of value, offer secondary calls to action to continue the dialog by setting up an autoresponder. An autoresponder sends out an email automatically to the user when they submit a form. This email is another potential touch point that can help draw the visitor into a deeper relationship with you.
- Viral/social/advocacy calls to action — You may have seen little social media logos for Twitter or Facebook on other sites. These icons allow users to click and then comment about your site on the relevant social media site. Be sure to enable members and visitors to forward your site to a friend, post about you to their blog, tweet about you, post to Facebook, and thus spread the word.
- Capturing leads — Everyone who fills out a form or otherwise gives you contact information is a lead. Decide what you do with these leads. When do you follow up? How do you track them categorize them and escalate them? Consider obtaining a customer relationship management (CRM) system to manage these leads.
Technical Support for Social Media Engagement is the 25th in a series of excerpts from our book, Be a Person: the Social Media Operating Manual for Enterprises (itself part of a series for different audiences). We’re now at about page 124. At this rate it’ll be a long time before we get through all 430 pages, but luckily, if you’re impatient, the book is available in paper form at http://bit.ly/OrderBeAPerson and you can save $5 using Coupon Code 62YTRFCV
See the previous posts What is Social Media?, Social Sites Defined, Why Social Media? How is Social Media Relevant to Business? First Steps Toward a Social Media Strategy, and Decide What Your Business Will Do About Social Computing, pt. 1
 CRM defined: bit.ly/bwl0b7