When it gets to this time of the year, social media users take to their online persona in an attempt to 'jazz-up' their profiles, while looking to keep the integrity of their online presence.
Staying one step ahead of the game seems to be a common theme online, with consumers looking to make the changes that attract more interaction, more business and, ultimately, the chance of higher profits.
But how can you effectively change around your profile and make it more pleasing to the same audience as before? The following seven tips will guide you through the process of giving your social media profiles a real clean-up.
1. Change up your profile's bio
It's what sells us to a new follower, what keeps people interested and is the best way to direct others to your website. Perhaps the most important aspect to consider changing, once in a while, is the limited number of words that you have to sell yourself.
On social media, it's often more important to sell yourself before you try and sell your product or service, and a bog-standard intro can be the difference between drawing new users in and leaving them lingering through the site's search field.
So why not use your flair to show off your best attributes? How about a more recent profile picture, or an enticing new banner to catch others' eyes?
2. Take down any old, irrelevant photos or videos
When we're searching someone's profile page, we're commonly attracted to the content that they've put online – and the most accessible of these, especially on Twitter, are photos and videos. Having pictures of comical nature is great, and we love our grumpy cat pictures as much as the next user.
However, if you're looking to streamline your profile, why don't you try deleting any photos that aren't of any real value, and make room for a clear stream of shareable, engaging content for others to see? New content is always great, but highlighting your older stuff can be just as good to a recent audience.
Of course, if you've made a recent switch to market yourself online using a personal account then don't forget to take down any embarrassing photos or videos. You don't want anything to hinder your chances of online dominance.
3. Check, check and check again – has anything changed on your chosen market?
You will probably notice that online trends, especially on networking sites, change quicker than the weather on a typical day in Britain, therefore it's important to keep a firm grip on what the market is after, and how you can mould your account to best entice these changes.
Trends are big online, as are hashtags. We all know that, and unless there's a new brainwave, that could be the case for some time. However, the content that goes online is getting bigger, better and more enticing than ever before. What better way to monitor this than keeping an eye on any competitors or any market leaders, without them even knowing?
We advise that you look at Twitter lists (or private groups) and check these daily. There's a reason why your competitors are putting out certain content, so why not learn from them and – if you're good enough – find out what they are NOT doing and find the gap.
4. Make sure your posts are as engaging as possible
Essentially, the main reason that your friends and colleagues (not to mention your followers and target market) will share your content is that it brings something new to the web, or something new that they've not necessarily seen or engaged with before.
Interactivity seems to be the order of the day at present, so putting up content that others can comment on – perhaps a discussion – could lead to increasing your social standing and add a fresh approach to your profile.
Why don't you try producing a poll? The old 'option one by retweeting, option two by favouriting' on Twitter as an example could be a good way to not only gauge opinion, but also have your profile retweeted around the web effortlessly.
5. Look out for a scheduling software
Nobody likes to be bombarded with several tweets, all along the same theme, in one go. In fact, it could have an adverse effect on your following if you're flooding your followers without giving them a chance to breathe. An excellent way to prevent this is using post-scheduling software, such as HootSuite, to manage your output.
Once an hour, or even at specific times of the day – there's plenty of scope on how you'd like to run your online accounts and it is also an excellent tool for busy business types who really ought to be thinking more on project deadlines than updating Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn. It's a time saver and, if it means you can get more done in the day, it could be a money-maker.
6. Show your face and smile
If you're a user and you're communicating on a person-to-person scale with like-minded people, you would always rather see an up-to-date picture of them (especially if you might enter into business negotiations or close-proximity working), and they'll be thinking the same of you. It's no good having a photo of ten years ago when you were running around the garden if you have the potential to show off your latest smile.
The best online pictures are tight to the camera (for example, there's very little else in the picture except you, and your face fills the layer) and you're smiling. Happy people sell and users will be more likely to engage with a happy-looking person rather than a serious face.
You'd put a smile on if you were out selling door-to-door, wouldn't you? Online is no different.
7. Do this again in three months
The market is always changing, so it's not just a case of a quick clean-up in many cases. This is something you should try to implement in each quarter, as it will help to keep your online profiles running to their optimum efficiency, and allow you to keep an eye on the market.
At the end of the day, the crux of online profiles is networking and bringing the biggest success, whether through sales or promotion, to your business. Nobody will look down on you for changing your bio every-so-often or for clearing out your lists for more interactive, engaging users. In fact, they'll probably appreciate the fact that you're forward-thinking and have your followers in mind.
Keep up or fall behind – just make sure that you're leading the pack rather than falling into the social media wilderness.
Do you agree with the above points? Are there spring-clean theories which you feel are better? Let us know what you think in the comments below.
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