All good things take time. . .

By Kayla Craig

1. Listening never ceases.

Social media begins with listening to others. “Listening helps identify trends and keeps you strongly connected to customers,” Mike Templeton says. “Being competitive in today’s business environment requires truly understanding the voice of your customers and then acting upon what you’ve learned.”

2. Be relevant.

People want to engage with companies and communities that are most relevant to them. “This is one reason why social media has grown in popularity,” Templeton says. “You’re likely to tune out an ad that doesn’t appeal to you, and the same behavior applies to an off-target message in social media.”

3. Accountability is key.

Whether you’re an individual interested in exploring social media or a company seeking ways to communicate with your customers, social media requires a certain level of commitment. “Establishing credibility in social media means establishing, nurturing and maintaining relationships,” Templeton says.

4. Embrace your personality.

“Associates in our convenience stores are professional, but they also know how to have fun,” Templeton says. “We reflect that same sense of fun across our social media channels. We believe social media is about people interacting with other people. Empower your associates to have a little fun and you’ll see customers gravitate toward your brand.”

5. Results take time.

Prepare to commit staff and financial resources to social media if you want to see results – there are no shortcuts to glory, Templeton says. “Success in social media takes time to produce, but the results are even greater when your customers are involved each step of the way.”