Most people enjoy using social media accounts. Therefore, it’s tempting to use your existing social media profiles for business use. However, social media for business is extremely different than social media for personal use. While the broad concepts are somewhat similar, there are several key differences as the article below will reveal. Below are five reasons to keep your personal and professional social media separate.
(BONUS: Scroll to the bottom for tips on how best to use imagery, hashtags and analytics for personal versus professional social media accounts)
1. Maintain Professionalism
A significant reason to keep your personal and professional social media separate is a matter of professionalism. It’s doesn’t look right to be promoting your latest blog post one minute and lamenting cold soup the next. By keeping them separate, you have more freedom to post the things you want to on your personal pages and keep your brand pages focused on things strictly related to your business. There is always the risk of losing business due to your personal views or attitudes. You probably won’t know that is the reason, so merging your personal and professional life together like this always carries an element of risk.
2 Reduce Confusion
Another reason to keep your personal and professional social media separate is to limit name confusion. If someone looks at your profile online and sees a lot of personal content, they may wonder if they have stumbled on the right profile or whether or not there is a separate account for your brand. You also have the problem of whether you use your name or the name of your brand. In most cases, there will be some differences between the two. As always, simple things in marketing is nearly always best, and name confusion could cause more problems than it’s worth.
3. Simpler to Manage
When it comes to managing social media, it’s a lot easier when you have a clear plan for each profile. For simplicity, having personal and professional social media separate gives you that clear plan for content, so you have a general idea on what to post. As ever, this all makes your life easier when looking for the best content and using a scheduling tool. You can also take things further by creating a social media calendar to help you plan things out ahead of time. Sources may be different for personal and professional profiles so you can add those separately to your accounts as needed.
One critical key to success on social media is letting your followers know what to expect from you. The problem with not keeping your personal and professional social media separate is followers won’t know what to expect from you next. Also, keep in mind that your audience will be different so some users will be following you for your personal content and others for your professional material. Without knowing what is coming next from you, this could lead to users unfollowing you for one reason or another. So, keeping these things consistent helps to simplify matters.
5. Audience Selection
As the previous point suggested, your followers need to know what to expect from you. However, this point should be extended into a marketing consideration. Remember that you may wish to use various forms of social media advertising on different platforms. That means you will wish to boost certain content for increased levels of engagement. The problem with a combined personal and professional social media platform is you won’t always know the users that are engaging with you are relevant for that promotion. However, by separating the accounts, you can be more confident you will reach the right users.
Use Hashtags, Imagery and Analytics differently for Personal versus Professional
No matter which social network you use, hashtags are important. Hashtags are meant to designate the topic of your post. They are a key component of social media marketing, and it’s important to learn how to use them properly. Though they have limited importance to people using social media for personal reasons, hashtags are essential for small businesses on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest. They can help people find your business easily, and they expand the reach of your posts. People often use hashtags incorrectly (or not at all) for personal usage. This isn’t the end of the world compared to a business not using them or using them incorrectly.
When it comes to social media marketing strategy, there’s much more to images than you think. While the image uploading process is the same for both professional and personal use, it’s probably the only thing that’s the same. For a personal profile, you can pretty much upload any images you want. For a business, it needs to be far more precise and on point with intent to incite, engage, and compel action. Posts with images can be a fun way to show your friends what you’re up to, but when it comes to marketing your business it’s better to show pictures of your products and promotions you have going on at the time.
When it comes to your personal profile, except for the most extreme narcissistic individuals out there, analytics are nonexistent and unnecessary. When you use social media for a business, however, they are crucial to success. Analytics are critically important to a successful social media campaign for a small business. You can use them to measure who is looking at your website, when they look at it, where they are, and what pages they click on. The information you gain from this data is crucial to the future success of your business. Without it, you will have a hard time tailoring your online marketing strategy to the specific needs of your business. They can be data-heavy and difficult to comprehend at times. That’s why it’s important to learn how to interpret them properly, so you can use this data to your advantage
There are different arguments about which is the best way to manage social media. Keeping your personal and professional social media separate is usually the right decision, but there are exceptions to this as well. If you do decide to keep things separate, remember it’s more professional, reduces name confusion, makes it easier to manage, followers know what to expect and ensures you’re marketing to the right audience. Need a hand with knowing what to do on what social media platform? Book a Wingman today for all your social media needs. You don’t have to fly solo.