It’s difficult to get social media right. I know that making a few posts to Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram per week feels like enough. The tweet line only holds a maximum of 140 characters but it can feel as daunting as a blank page. Finding interesting pictures to post to social media week after week can be exhausting. How many different ways can you take a photo of a beer and a hamburger, right?
Countless people will tell you that the trick is in getting your guests to post to social media for you. Get Facebook fans and Twitter followers to fill up your feed with their own content. Doesn’t that sound easy? I can hear the “social media consultants” clamoring to tell you, “It’s all in the power of the crowd. Give them a hashtag and they will build your social media following.”
If you are waiting for your guests to jump on a hashtag that you promote in your venue or tweet to your account to earn a one-time discount, you’re going to be waiting for a long time. I’m not saying that it doesn’t ever happen, but it’s the exception and not the rule. Instead, you need to take social media into your own hands to build a ground swell. The good news is that you don’t need to work your fingers to the bone thinking of witty tweets and Facebook posts. You have an army of social media experts around you every single day of the week.
Your employees should be your greatest social media assets. If they’re on Twitter and Facebook, have them follow you and like your page. Your total numbers of followers and friends on social media is directly impacted by the network effect. The more you have, the easier it is add them.
Now, there’s a huge caveat to consider before imploring your servers and bartenders to tweet on your behalf. You can’t force them to do it. If it’s something they feel forced to do, they will do more harm than good. Instead, you need to give them some level of freedom to express their creativity and capture your restaurant or bar in all its glory. Start by asking one of your bartenders or best servers to take a few pictures and post them to social media.
If you’re going to run a contest or participate in a brand-sponsored promotion, your employees can be the best people to get the action started. In the same way that no one wants to be in an empty bar, people don’t want to use a hashtag that has no activity. Challenge your employees to come up with the best tweet or Facebook post related to the contest. You can even incentivize them according to who can generate the most social media shares.
The Dos Equis MVP Search program is an ideal contest to motivate employee participation. Challenge them to post the best epic sports tweet with the #XXMVP hashtag. Run an internal contest in which your entire staff votes on whose tweet is the best. Such friendly competition is just thing to then morph into your employees talking about the program with guests. That’s the dream.
Instead of inventing a program from scratch, sign up for Dos Equis MVP Search and challenge them to write the most interesting sports tweet in the world.