“Why are you on your phone again?”“Eva, we’re having lunch right now, put that phone down.” “Wait… 9 Instagram notifications?! You’re crazy!” — Just a couple of examples of what I get to hear on an almost daily basis. Yes, it’s true: I am passionate for social media, and thus seem to be addicted to my phone. My environment gets frustrated sometimes and simply doesn’t “get” it… but I always have a response ready for them.

For me, social media isn’t about showing off the perfect Instagram life or bragging about the amount of Twitter followers you gained in the past two months. It’s not about the likes you get on your newest profile pic (though it’s nice to get in those double digits) or putting up with the latest challenge (hey Kiki). No. For me, social media really is about getting… social.

When I’m on my phone during lunch, it’s because I’m talking to my friends about something that has happened in their lives (someone finally got pregnant!), or to reply in a WhatsApp group discussing our weekend plans. When I have 9 Instagram notifications, it’s because I want to see a live video of one of my friends at a concert, or because I asked someone where she got that cute skirt she wears in her Stories. I write birthday wishes to my nephew who lives across the sea, or post a cute Facebook picture of me and my mom for Mother’s Day. Via social media, I stay up to date about the people I care about, and I think there’s only good things on that.

Another reason why I love social media, is because it gets me inspired. Interesting articles about entrepreneurship, what to wear this fall or getting in touch with nice new products or companies: I get to know a lot of new things just by scrolling through my Facebook, LinkedIn or Instagram feed. There’s more: in the meantime, I even expect to discover these novelties via social media. I expect posts that are perfectly meaningful to me, and that get my attention right away. And I know I’m not the only one.

If that’s the case, how come that some companies don’t seem to get the message? How come that my social media feeds are still plenty of posts, videos and articles that I just don’t care about? What’s the story behind all those bland visuals, boring copy and bad targeting? It’s never the lack of opportunity. It’s never the lack of possibilities. It’s the lack of knowledge and expertise, and the misconception that social is “easy” and that “conversions will come eventually”. I can’t think of anything less true.

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To be on social media, efforts have to be made. At WE LIKE YOU, we always keep five things in mind. Five principles that are a first step into great social media management:

  1. Do you know your audience? “Yes, we did some market research and our audience consists of working mothers between 30 and 45 who love to go out with friends.” That’s nice, but… do you know your audience? Do you know one of these women, do you know what she finds important on social media, and how she differences between good and bad commercial posts? Get out there, and ask your target group about their social media behavior. Only then, you can start creating good content.

  2. Are you contributing to your target group’s social media life? Are you being an inspiration as a brand, or just throwing the next commercial post to someone’s head? Always ask yourself what someone can conclude from your post. Do they win something from it, do they learn something, do they discover? Make sure you bring value to your audience’s life.

  3. How about your visual game? Is it appealing, does it stand out, is it attractive? Never go through with boring visuals that will never get noticed. Go the extra mile: chose for short, dynamic content (hi GIF, hi video!) in different sizes, so you can use it on different channels. Say hello to a maximized reach!
  4. Are you, as a B2B producer of chemical products, relevant on Instagram? Does your restaurant by the Belgian seaside add value to someone’s LinkedIn feed? Always wonder where you should be present with your brand or company. It is never a shame to exclude one channel in exchange for excellent management of another. It is always a shame to be an unwelcome guest.

  5. Targeting, targeting, targeting. If you can check off the four points above, you now only have to make sure that your post reaches the audience you so carefully defined and created content for. Social media advertising can be a crazy profitable tool for putting your brand out there… if used wisely! Add value to your audience’s news feeds by exploiting the different opportunities social advertising has to offer.

Of course, there’s a lot more to social media management than the five points I summed up, but this can be a good start. WE LIKE YOU is there for you in every step along the way, making sure that people will keep on loving social media as they do today, because it adds value to their daily lives. Brands and companies can never forget that, on social media, they have to be just as social as the people they want to follow them.