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Social media workshop notes

Notes from the social media workshop given by Jennie Wood of Avalanche to market traders at the Frome Independent.


Thanks to all of you who attended yesterday’s #socialstatus workshops.  Dave from Somerset Deli, we were thinking of you as you braved the bus routes back to Bridgwater!  Hope it was an easy trip.

We hope you all stay in touch – and adopt the suggested #marketsocial on Twitter as a means of collaboratively marketing online.  Keep an eye on each other, engaging with and sharing each other’s posts and you’ll soon start to realise the benefits.  We will be checking up on you!

You’ll find us on:

It’s great to see so many of you already underway with social media activity, keep it going, remember the 9/10 rule for Twitter and you’ll be on the right track.

If any of you would like further help with marketing, PR and/or social media, let us know. We could organise one-to-one tuition, as well as group sessions, to advance your skills, if you would like us to.

As you’ll all have appreciated, there were different levels of ability in each group, so to help refresh memories and provide you all with further inspiration, we have loaded this blog post with social media tips, reference guides and sound marketing advice, to hopefully, give you everything you need to make progress under your own steam.


Here are some refreshers on the basics:

For Twitter
For Facebook


Four golden rules of social media marketing

1. Use photos and video.

2. Set goals, to help you to evaluate how well online marketing activity is working for you.

3. Theme your content, but keep your posts varied. Variety is the spice of life and engaged social media fan bases.

4. Provide a clear call to action in your posts. Whether a question to answer, a link to click on or a requested share, make it clear and easy for your followers to interact.


How about some social media advice from Richard Branson?

1. Provide high quality content.
I use social media to highlight issues that affect us all. A blog post can kick-start a debate and make an impact in the real world.

2. Social media isn’t just a one-way street.
I always try to make time to reply to people (including by answering readers’ questions in these columns). Many good ideas for future blogs are sparked by reading the comments online and the conversations they spark. If you’re expecting people to be intrigued by what you and your business have to say, you have to genuinely be interested in their feedback.

3. Tell a few jokes.
As always: Don’t take yourself too seriously. You have a lot of opportunities to make people smile via social media. Among my posts and tweets you’ll find lots of funny tales, cheeky questions and the odd photo of me making a fool of myself.

4. Give them the genuine article.
Try to make sure your posts and tweets provide a true reflection of yourself, and not just your professional persona. Whether on social media, on a plane or in the office, you (and your business) are far more likely to make an impression if you let your real personality shine through.


Avalanche’s reference guide to social media marketing

• Keep it simple

• Be human – but keep personal stuff separate!

• Remember the online (and offline) longevity of tweets and online posts – and that what you say will be visible beyond those who are following your

• Social media is all about engagement, not one-way communication. Remember to share the wealth – even with the competition. It’s not a forum for direct selling or spamming. Use social media to add value to what you do by posting useful information and being available to answer questions.

• Avoid being Mr Hard Sell. Like the plague. Be of service and share useful information 90% of the time; toot your own horn 10% of the time.

• Successful social media marketing stems from listening. Listening thoughtfully gives you a better sense of not only what people are saying but also how they are feeling.

• Demonstrate expertise and add value. Enter any online conversation with the aim of adding value. Before posting a message, ask yourself: how is this adding to the conversation? In some circles, talking about your product or service will be considered valuable, in others however, unwelcome and intrusive.

• Social media is all about people, building relationships, authenticity and trust. Contribute, add value, demonstrate your knowledge, be friendly and helpful, interact and enjoy! Participating in conversations (when appropriate!), answering questions and providing support will generate further goodwill for you and your business.

• Be patient, results won’t necessarily happen overnight, consistency and frequency will build these.

• Value your customers and supporters: make them feel special

• Think about who you are targeting when creating/updating your profile and invite existing contacts. Always remember your audience (personal vs business).

• Think of Twitter and Facebook as online networks – extensions to physical ones. Use them to make new connections, but importantly, to strengthen existing relationships.

• Think of all social media activity as building and maintaining a community. Customer engagement is an important marketing exercise.

• Responding – very important for maintaining good relations

• Do some messages or enquiries warrant more than just a tweet/direct message reply? Would an email, phone call or meeting help if so…


And one last handy social media guide for you all – kindly shared by Mary Longford (@ABPreserves), published on the excellent Foodie Bugle website.

If you’re still reading, well done!  Keep this blog post handy and let us know how you get on.

Look forward to seeing you all at the next Frome Independent.