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Attitude – is yours getting in the way of your social media campaigns?

Jun. 17, 2014

 The way you express yourself on social media can often speak volumes over the actual words you use. Your tone of voice and overall focus has just as much subliminal impact as the vocabulary or key words you choose and if you’re not aware of how you come across, you may unwittingly be undermining your own promotion campaigns.

Use social media’s freedom of expression wisely
Part of the attraction of social media is that it is open to everyone to express themselves as they see fit. While this is ok during personal communication to friends, family and close acquaintances, it isn’t quite the same when you are trying to market to an unknown audience. You can’t take quite so many liberties when you’re using social media for professional ends.
Never forget that the tone you use on social media is perceived as a reflection of your attitude towards their site users. Never forget that you are trying to attract an audience and either sell a product or service or build your brand. 
Negativity and bitter, overly sarcastic, resentful and critical posts will do more to harm than gain support for your product or service.

Focus on problem solving
What people really want is effective solutions to their problems. Fulfilling this need should always be the priority of your social media and other posts. Forget about getting cheap laughs by mocking, criticizing, or putting down the competition in some way. There is already too much negative information circulating on the airwaves. Too much negativity can make you seem defensive and this suggests vulnerability, uncertainty and ultimately may chase potential customers away.
Instead, concentrate on entertaining your users while at the same time using subtle and cunning positive psychology to achieve your marketing ends. Keep your tone friendly, supportive, helpful and show that you are inclined to go the extra mile to provide the solution that the user is looking for. Clever, witty, sarcastic posts and in-jokes are all very well but they make many people uncomfortable and this is not what you are trying to achieve.

Attitudes to Avoid Like the Plague
Arrogance, Superiority and Boasting: 
You may be the best on the market but you must never, never, never adopt an arrogant tone. Leave it to third parties to use superlatives to describe your business and keep your adjectives more down to earth and practical.

Nobody wants to deal with someone who thinks their work, lifestyle, beliefs and status are superior to everyone else so never adopt excessive self-praise in the mistaken belief that you will convince a social media user that you are the best. Boasting, arrogance and superiority do not intimidate or destroy your competition – on the contrary they are probably sure-fire ways to get your rivals more business! 
Yes, mention your awards, testimonials, achievements and other signs that they are truly good at their business. But always use a tone of gratitude and humble appreciation for such positive feedback.

Avoid criticism: 
Don’t use overt criticism of rival companies as a marketing tactic because it nearly always backfires. Excessive and explicit criticism rings warning bells in users’ subconscious brains and they start asking themselves why you have to use dirty tactics in an attempt to generate more business.

Instead of bashing others focus on your strengths as a way to promote their products or services. Concentrate on answering their user’s questions in as honest and transparent a way as you can. This can go far towards building a positive image and a reputable brand – and certainly is a far better strategy than negative critiques.

Attitudes that can inspire positive results
Always start by focusing on why you are using social media. You want to simultaneously sell their goods and services in the short term and over the long term build an audience for their brand. 
Tolerance Focus on what your users need from you. They may have general questions or be looking for more specific solutions to particular problems and think that you can help. 

Always be tolerant of your user’s posts and try to respond seriously in a polite and timely manner. The trend today is for instant information so there is no point getting back to the user a week later!
Maybe you have answered their question a hundred times before but we are all in a rush these days and don’t have time to go searching back through hundreds of old posts. Gently point them in the right direction and thank them for their interest in using your site. Irritability, intolerance, frustration and annoyance will alienate you from the very people you are trying to reach. Treat every conversation as if it were the first one you have ever had on social media!

Be entertaining, inspiring AND informative
Other users may simply be interested in newsworthy events or being entertained. Funny snippets related to your business help to keep users engaged and eager to read your next post – which is great for building your brand.

But although humour is one of the best ways to attract positive attention to your posts, it doesn’t all have to be funny or entertaining. Solid facts and hard news are also worthy of posting, as well as sharing or retweeting tips and useful links to complementary posts that you come across that you think may be of interest to your users.
The aim is for good content that will interest your user and not be a pointless distraction. We all receive too much information these days and you want your user to welcome your post not be frustrated by its irrelevance.

Look back at previous posts…
So before you  post again on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram or any one of the other social media channels that you have set up, go back and review some of your post from the past and think about the type of effect you were hoping to achieve. It is never too late to correct your tone of voice and if you refocus on adopting a positive, inspiring, helpful, encouraging and sincere attitude it won’t be long before you see this translate into more positive results for your business. 

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