Social media marketing is part art and part science. It takes some creativity and an artistic side, but it also takes elements that tend to be more scientific, such as an ability to study particular social media audiences and what they like. In this post I’d like to look at the 7 characteristics that I have found to be the most important.
1 – Attentive
A big part of social media marketing is learning what works and what doesn’t from observing trends at various social media sites. A successful social media marketer will not try to push content that isn’t well-suited for a social media audience, and he or she will know what is likely to draw interest from being attentive.
If you’re hoping to have better results with social media one of the first things you should do is to make a stronger effort to study the submissions to a specific social media site. Pay attention to trends among submissions that become popular and notice the types of posts that don’t have success.
2 – Responsive
Although being attentive is important, putting that knowledge into action is also critical. A responsive marketer will not only notice the trends, but he or she will apply them. Once you’ve learned some things about a particular social media audience, work on being responsive by creating your own content that will fit with the audience and will have a great chance for success.
3 – Creative
One of the temptations with social media marketing is to simply regurgitate content that has done well in the past for others by simply putting a small twist onto it to make it your own. While this can certainly get you some traffic and exposure, in order to have the best results possible you’ll need to take the time to come up with a more creative idea. Effective social media marketers can take their knowledge of social media users and their interests and they can come up with a totally unique idea that will get their attention.
Creativity comes easier to some than it does to others. Personally, I like to use brainstorming for coming up with blog post ideas. I may only develop 10% of the ideas that I write down, but that helps me to eliminate the ideas that I don’t think are worth my time. Take the time to think about some popular submissions you’ve seen at social media sites and brainstorm some ideas that can have a similar effect with your subject matter.
4 – Unselfish
Although social media marketing is driven by a desire to build traffic, exposure and links, you’ll find that the best social media marketers are actually very unselfish. This should be pretty logical since social media is all about interaction, but many new social media marketers get distracted by their own interests.
While there’s nothing wrong with wanting to build traffic through social media, you should always be willing to help others whenever there is something worth promoting. Don’t only vote for your own submissions, and make an effort to submit the work of others as well as your own (if you submit your own).
5 – Consistent
If you are hoping to become a “power user” or to build a strong profile at a specific social media site, you’ll need to be active consistently to build your presence. Effective social media marketers are on their targeted sites every day and they’re always getting involved with new users and always learning more about how to market to that audience.
Make some time in your daily schedule to be active at a few specific social media sites. Inconsistency will usually lead to a lack of results.
6 – Persistent
Not only do marketers need to be consistent, but they need to keep moving forward even when there are setbacks. Social media marketing can be frustrating at times. Maybe you spent a few hours on a blog post hoping to make the Digg front page and it just didn’t work out. This happens to everyone, you just need to keep working and finding new ways to create the response that you’re looking for.
7 – Connected
All successful social media marketers have a large network of other users. Many people reach out to their network in search of votes, either through official “share” features or unofficially through IM or email. Whether you ask other for votes or not, it will be very difficult to have much success with social media without being well-connected.
A well-connected social media user will draw votes simply by other seeing their avatar. The most “powerful” users at most sites are well-known and respected by the other users and they tend to attract votes simply by their reputation alone.
What’s Your Opinion?
What characteristics do you feel are the most important for social media marketers?