I read a great post on 14 Best Practices for Long-Term Social Media Success from Mashable, here’s a few clips:
The key to zooming in on purpose and usefulness within social channels starts with the realization that there is no one audience. Nor is there a sustainable market for branded messages, marketing campaigns, or “Tweet/Like to Win” contests. Indeed, every channel created to represent the brand must carry a purpose, mission and corresponding value. One of the most common questions I’m asked by businesses of all shapes and sizes is, “What is the right number of accounts we should have in each social network?” Or, “How many profiles is too many or too few?”
The answer is as simple as it is revealing. Create the number of channels that meaningfully extend the focus of your business. Only create channels that enhance the brand message without diluting it. And make sure you have the capacity to keep all the channels relevant.
So what are the best practices for creating an engaging social stream? Let’s take a look at the traits of some of the more successful and regarded brands in the business.
3. Mission and Purpose: Know the audience you’re trying to reach and design a communicable mission and purpose for each account.
6. Establish Conversational Workflow: Each account requires an information path and workflow. They also require bridges between them to ensure that every representative is informed and that the right delegates within the business are on point to engage or respond accordingly.
8. Initiate a Training Program: Representatives will require ongoing training to stay sharp and focused. Every engagement either reinforces or takes away from the brand experience. As technology moves faster than our ability to master its lessons, training keeps employees on track.
10. Draft a Social Media Brand Style Guide: Chances are a style guide already exists that communicates brand presentation, usage guidelines and other forms of brand-related marketing aesthetics. This guide requires a significant update to account for social media. Its primary function is to define the brand persona, characteristics, voice, and essence.
11. Compose Guidelines: Develop a social media policy that conveys the Dos and don’ts of social media. If one already exists, update it. Current laws may protect employees’ rights to express opinion about employers within their personal accounts. Additionally, many employees complain that the existing guidelines are either too extreme or ambiguous to define successful engagement. Design the guideline to serve as guardrails and also a roadmap to success.
12. Serve Customers and Prospects: Social consumers now expect brands to solve problems and answer questions in social streams. Each channel requires a service function or a dedicated channel to satisfy needs and promote appreciation and loyalty.