Blog by Envision Networks’ Operations Director, Matt Wardlaw

Creating the “voice” and image of your radio station is an intricate process that is crucial for success, whether you’re putting a station on the air for the first time or working to keep an existing one in a relevant place. In the digital age, this extends to social media and particularly for those who have spent decades operating in an analog world, it can be a complicated thing to navigate. But it doesn’t have to be.

Have an easy to implement strategy

As you build your initial social media strategy, one of the important things to consider is how you’re going to make your accounts feel real. Let the audience know that they’re interacting with an actual human.

It’s easy to use apps like Hootsuite to schedule out a week’s worth of tweets on Twitter, a timed release of event information and content related to your radio station. If a listener comes across your station’s account will it be evident that there’s little recent activity and nothing exciting for them to engage? 

Build your social brand to be relatable

The best social media involves a combination of brand promotion mixed with things that are just fun and relatable to your listeners. Celebrate Hug Your Cat Day with your audience and encourage them to share pictures of their beloved felines.

Dig further into the designated day calendars, you’ll discover many possibilities. Get behind days like Leave The Office Earlier Day or Donut Day. There’s also VCR Day (sadly, today’s generation may never know the frustration of fishing a tape out of the VCR that’s been munched beyond repair).

You can get plenty of timely content (and funny GIFs and memes!) just by going through Twitter and seeing what people are talking about. Take funny trending hashtags and have fun with them.

Extend celebrity visits to your social brand
If you’ve got an artist stopping by the station, plan a social media “takeover” and film video that you can chop up into separate videos to use on your Instagram and Facebook stories.

Let your jocks have fun too — if they’re already doing video for your web site, chances are you’ll get humorous “outtakes” and then share those via social media.

It’s also a great if someone being interviewed reveals something especially newsworthy or interesting. Capture it and circulate the clip on your social media. Use that excerpt to help promote the full conversation, making sure to include their social media handle as part of your post so that they’ll share it on their own accounts and boost the visibility of the content.

Planting content that engages

The art of “seeding” your station’s content is important. Take regular ongoing features and promote them several times throughout the day or week, using different text and (where appropriate) key quotes from the content each time that you share, giving it fresh exposure that will help to extend the lifespan and reach far beyond the initial posting.

You must engage if you want them to stay

How are you engaging with your listeners on these social media accounts? Responding to their questions and comments in a conversational way is key. Make sure that you’re monitoring your mentions and messages.

For the messages, while it’s possible to set up autoresponders to tackle frequently asked questions, it’s best to answer most of them directly with a personal response. With the mentions, sometimes you’ll be addressing something that’s of interest to your listener base, so feel free to share your reply with their original question, if that’s the case.

These are just a few items to consider as you’re working to develop or retool your social media strategy. Look at some of the creative things that your favorite social media accounts are doing for additional inspiration and ideas. It only took two million likes (and a key assist from Chance The Rapper) for Wendy’s to bring back their spicy chicken nuggets. What will do you do with your accounts to change the universe?

Contact me at mattw@envisionnetworks.com if you would like to chat about your social brand.

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