Social Media Tone – Be Careful What You Say and How You Say It

In the world of social media, one of the biggest keys to success is effectively establishing a rapport with followers, friends, and, ultimately, customers. In many circumstances, one of the best ways to do this is to connect with these groups in a conversational, social tone that makes them feel more like they’re having a conversation with a friend than being sold too. That casual, informal tone can do wonders for establishing strong social media connections, but it can also backfire if social media operators aren’t careful to be mindful of what they’re saying and how they say it.

One of the most dangerous situations this can arise from is when social media posts or messages contain a negative tone or connotation. Sometimes the subtlest negativity is enough to cause a problem, even if intentions are good. It might seem like a good idea to make a backhanded comment about a competitor or go on a minor rant about the deficiencies of their products or services, but the reality is that doing so offers almost no upside and has the potential to not only cost a business social media followers, but also to damage their brand image and reputation.

First of all, social media users aren’t stupid, and if they see a company making negative comments or being condescending in regards to a competitor, they’re going to immediately see the bias that exists and discount the comments based on it. So even if the poorly chosen tone doesn’t have any negative consequences, it isn’t going to work either. Secondly, by taking a negative or condescending tone, a business risks turning off its existing social media following and it isn’t unheard of for otherwise loyal followers to voice their displeasure, creating a backlash.social media concept

The fact is that people just generally don’t like negativity. For the same reason that independent voters regularly indicate that they find political attack ads to be distasteful and off-putting, consumers don’t like it when businesses take the low road. It’s highly important for employees tasked with operating social media profiles to remember that when they post they speak for the company. Offhand negative comments that might seem harmless in a normal context can have unexpected consequences when delivered on behalf of a business. Diplomacy rules when it comes to speaking on behalf of a company in the social media environment.

So when posting for business purposes, it’s important to remember that a snarky remark about a competitor likely has no upside potential whatsoever, but could have significant negative consequences. There is nothing worse than having social media users turning on the company they follow, and putting out that fire is often embarrassing and difficult. So instead of attempting to pump up a business by putting down the competition, companies should focus on the quality of their own products or services and let that quality speak for itself. Not only will it result in a stronger, more loyal following, but it eliminates the dangers that negative social media tone can invite, and that kind of risk mitigation can be invaluable in a world where appearances are everything.

Outranking Your Competitors

If you want to outrank your competitors and get that first spot in the Google search engine you need to investigate the websites that are ranking above you right now. You need to know what they are doing right so that you can copy their moves. But copying their moves will not be enough for you to outrank them, as you will then be two equally good websites. You instead have to be better than they are and have greater content, better backlinks and a better reputation.

Check the Backlinks of Your Competitors

Do some research to find out where your competitors get their backlinks. You can do the simple Google search where you type in “link:websitename.com” in the search field, but this will only give you some of the sites that links to your competitor. There are also some free tools online that allow you to check websites’ backlinks. So go through the list and select the sites that look good and relevant and have a PageRank over 3. Find out how you can get a backlink from that site. Do they allow DoFollow comments or should you E-mail them about guest blogging opportunities?

You should not focus on how many backlinks your competitors have but more on the quality of the backlinks. If they for instance have ten thousand backlinks but only five of them come from websites with a high PageRank, you may have a good chance of outranking them if you can get those five high quality backlinks as well.

So try to find some really great sites such as CNN, BBC, or some sort of popular online news-site and see if it is possible to get a backlink from some of them.

Offer Something That They Do Not

Take a look at your competitors’ websites and see what they offer people. What kind of information do they offer, do they have some sort of free download or do they have a community such as a forum or membership site? Write down everything you can find on your competitors and why you think this makes them successful. So for instance, why would a forum make a website popular? People love to be a part of a community, especially if they are not that many websites in that particular niche. They like to share their own knowledge and experience and get feedback and help from others who are in the same situation and are interested in the same topic.

Are They Bookmarked?

Outranking Your CompetitorsSee if you can find any social bookmarking share buttons on their sites such as StumbleUpon, Digg, Reddit or a Facebook like button. If they have some of these you will sometimes be able to see how many have liked, tweeted or stumbled their sites. This will give you an idea of how popular the sites really are.

How is Their Content?

Take some time to actually read some of the website content to see how good the sites really are. Is the content unique or just like what you could find on most websites and blogs? If the content is not that great you will have an easier time outranking them.

Make Keyword Targeted Videos

Submitting videos to those well-known sites such as YouTube and Metacafe is a really good idea, as Google sometimes tends to rank videos much higher than websites. So make some videos on some of your keywords and then hope that Google will place the videos on the number one spot.

So improve your ranking and outrank all of your competitors. Getting to the top in Google means that you will get most of the visitors, which means your will get more traffic, which leads to more sales in the end.