Making social media work for your brand: How to maximize hashtags & comments

By Libby Allnatt

Kia Baikie/By Mariah Neal

Kia Baikie/By Mariah Neal

Kia Baikie is the social media account manager for SmartFem, a national online women’s magazine and media group based in Scottsdale. The SmartFem team not only produces content for women in its digital magazine, but also advises clients on how to best reach female consumers using digital tools.

As SmartFem tries to expand its social media reach to a national audience, Baikie tells us how she tries to maximize SmartFem’s Facebook, Twitter and Instagram pages to appeal to the women with whom SmartFem wants to engage.

SmartFem is a magazine for women and an advocate for women’s issues. Given this perspective, how do your strategies for engagement and social media differ from how they would be at a more traditional news organization?

On our Twitter, we follow lots of really strong women, lots of women that are advocates for certain issues. One thing I do is when engaging with people over Twitter or Instagram or even Facebook, I’ll do hashtags. You can look in the comments and you’ll see certain hashtags. For Monday we post a lot of motivational stuff, so I’ll do #MotivationMonday. As far as it goes for women, I’ll look up certain hashtags on Twitter and Instagram and I will go through and like their content, and that brings a lot of followers to our account.

Our Twitter is our strongest account right now.

I definitely reply to people. If someone shares an article, we say, ‘Thanks for reading,’ or ‘Thanks for checking us out.’ We’ll message people on Twitter. We’ll do the same, ‘thanks for following. Here’s our website, feel free to check it out.’ It varies. Engagement is huge. If you just post and you’re not engaging with people, you’re definitely gonna lose traffic.

What do you consider a greater priority in social media for SmartFem: Engaging and informing the readers you already have (consistent fans of the site), or engaging new readers who may not be familiar with these issues at all?

Definitely both. New readers are always appreciated, and right now we’re really branching out on a national scale versus just focusing on the Phoenix area. Something I’ll do is I’ll hashtag certain cities like New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, even international cities like Paris. So when people are searching they’ll see our articles that we shared on social media.

Our vision is definitely big. We don’t want to limit ourselves to a certain area.

What engagement tips would you give to an organization that focuses on a particular audience or issue?

Definitely be posting regularly. Whether that’s once a day for you or once every two days. Post at the same times during the day, whatever time is best for your audience. It’s gonna vary. Find out what time people are responding to you best using analytics. Be posting during those times.

Hashtag. Say you’re a company that makes dog treats. You’ll be hashtagging dogs, animals. You’ll be following people that are dog-friendly and animal-friendly. You’re gonna get a lot of people to follow you and look at your content that way.

Commenting back is also good. When people comment on your Instagrams for example, and they say ‘Nice photo’ or ‘This is cool,’ don’t just leave those comments sitting there. Comment back and engage with people. If they’re not following you, there’s a high chance that they’ll follow you after seeing that you’re gonna be responding to them.

Do you have any other social media tips or important points about engagement?

Something that’s super important is to be organic and find your own posting style. People are gonna follow you if you’re unique and you’re not posting what everyone else is. If you can find a way to make your brand or whatever it is, whether it’s your personal account or your company’s account, to make that unique, it’s gonna drive results in a big way.

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