Authenticity: The heartbeat of social

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There are plenty of things that don’t go together: Toothpaste and orange juice, oil and water… But authenticity and social media do, which is why this blog post is all about keeping social media social.

While social media should never replace real-life relationships, it should mirror the same qualities that are needed in real life. After all, authenticity is the key component of what makes social media so successful for businesses.

Social media allows viewers to interact with businesses in real time, but also creates an open space for conversation and feedback, so if authentic enough, social media could be considered the modern day testimonial.

Being authentic might make many businesses hesitant. To be authentic one has to be vulnerable. It’s showing the raw and real side of you and your business to the outside world. That means you’re showcasing the struggles in life, in addition to the joys and celebrations.

And that’s OK! Nobody’s perfect. More than most understand that, there’s no doubt. Your audience wants to see the steps you’re taking and how you’re getting from point A to point B. Many viewers are idolizing you, many enjoy your product or service, many may be supportive friends or family. No matter who they are, you’ll want to create content that is on-brand and consistent with your messaging, while also using your platforms to connect with your followers and develop a relationship with them. Ask them questions. Engage with them. You don’t want them to just scroll by. The content you are creating should make them stop and appreciate what you’re giving them.

“Fake it till you make it” may be a strategy that works well in other marketing situations, but it’s not the right method for social media. Quality content takes time, expertise and a real effort to obtain an organic social community.

If that’s not enough to convince you, here’s just a few more reasons as to why it’s important to be authentic on social media:

  • It’s inviting
  • It helps you become approachable
  • It helps create a safe place
  • It helps you stay true to yourself
  • It builds trust
  • It builds community

It’s not enough to just post and hope for the best. You need to engage with users in your community — your potential customers — in order to see traction on your post! If you’re ready, use the Focus on Local Engagement Method for your posts.

Author: Katey Crean, Hello Social Co.

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