Recently I gave a presentation on using How to use social media in the manufactured housing industry in Minneapolis for the MMHA Spring Conference. While the presentation was too long for one blog post, I thought I would provide an update on some interesting facts about social media on how to use social media in the MH industry.
Despite its hype, social media is at its heart just another means to achieve your marketing goals. As such, it should be approached in the same way. Just like all parts of your business, you need to have a plan and goals, if you are going to achieve the best results. What kinds of goals? Here are some ideas:
Real Goals for How to Use Social Media in the MH Industry:
- Improve Customer Service and Sales by giving people alternate ways to contact you. (Some statistics show that 30% of Millennials engage with brands on a social media networks at least once a month. While the 18-34 age range might not be your customers now – they will be!)
- Monitor and Manage Your Reputation Online. (90% of consumers read online reviews before visiting a business. Some social media networks have a rating system.)
- Improve Search Results. (Facebook and other social media networks show up in Google searches. Multi-star reviews can also help.)
- Inform Customers about the Advantages of Manufactured Housing and Community Living.
- Advertise Inventory, Announce Sales Promotions, and Encourage Sales. (Ads on social media networks let you target your customers by age, sex, location and more.)
Decide Which Network to Use
Different platforms have different uses. Instagram is great for showing off photos of manufactured homes, communities and community events. Twitter can be great for following local news and keeping tabs on what everyone is talking about. Pinterest appeals primarily to women and is great for How-Tos, product suggestions and decorating ideas. Have videos? YouTube is the 3rd most visited site, after Google and Facebook. LinkedIn, a Microsoft-owned company, is the leading professional social media platform.
And speaking of Facebook, Facebook remains the most popular social media network. If you are just getting started in all this, it is where we recommend you begin. More than half of U.S. residents use Facebook “several times a day.” It has messaging functions for talking with customers, customizable ads, and a rating system. If you have your Facebook Business page up and running, with regular content and responding to messages, then you can take the next step and look at other social media tools.
Posting on Your Social Media Network?
We’ve written before on some simple social media tips, but one great way to start is by thinking about what people ask you or your managers. What are the questions you get regularly? What do people want to know? Also, look at your goals – if your goal is to inform people about manufactured housing, there are some amazing resources in our industry you can link to.
Also, think about creating a calendar. Having a calendar can simplify life considerably. First hit the major holidays and events, and then fill in from there. Here are a couple ideas to get you rolling:
- Introduce newest employees (or celebrate anniversaries)
- Interview a customer or resident
- Ask questions or conduct polls
- Share your company’s story and its mission
Social Media – Then and Now
The time of being able to ignore social media is long gone. Just as we worked on our newspaper ads, then our direct mail, phone call sales and then email etiquette, social media has to be a marketing and customer focus for your business. Need help? Keep an eye on the Insider. We post marketing tips and tools regularly!