Imagining social media as a dinner party helps to make sense of the best way to approach it as a brand and importantly how you should behave.
Let’s meet three different diners to explain what we mean…
Meeting your first dinner party guest
You arrive at the host’s house knowing no one else. Whilst the host is busy in the kitchen you are indulging in a pre-dinner drink. You introduce yourself to the first person standing next to you and start a conversation.
That person answers your questions – name, where they live etc – but after five minutes you realise you aren’t getting anything back in terms of conversation. It’s all one-way chat driven by you, and quite frankly it’s boring and uncomfortable. Luckily for you, it is time for dinner and you take your seat.
Your dinner party neighbour
The person sitting to your left is much more chatty and animated and you happily listen to what they say. Minutes go by and it slowly dawns on you that they are only talking about themselves. But you politely wait to see if the conversation steers in a different direction or if you get a chance to offer your thoughts or contribute. It doesn’t. Again, it’s boring so you make your excuse in between courses and go to help the host in the kitchen.
Sparkling company and food for thought
As you slip back into your seat you notice several diners happily laughing and chatting together. The person sitting opposite you is engaging, witty and more importantly bringing everyone together to have a conversation. Everyone chips in, new people are included and are listened to, it’s now a fun occasion that you can join in with. Finally, this dinner party is really enjoyable.
Dining on conversation!
So what does this tell us about how brands should (and shouldn’t) behave on social media? Be chatty, invite your audience to contribute and then join in when they do. Chat because you want to and because you have something to offer. Don’t say nothing or equally don’t just talk about yourself (buy me!), it’s a dinner party guest turn off. As is being stilted in your conversation with nothing of interest to say.
So, are you ready for dinner?
To find out more about how to engage on social media so your audience feels included, contact us for a quick chat to hear some of our initial thoughts and recommendations on how you could optimise your social media performance.