Posting on social media is a rather straightforward process but if you don’t have a strategy you may be wondering why you’re not seeing results.
Mike Haynes, president of LOVING, based in Gastonia, North Carolina, says it’s all about having a learner’s posture when it comes to testing things out to find what works on social media. Oftentimes making the most of your social media posts calls for you to understand your overall goals and your audience first.
Determine Your Goal
“This includes not only the work our teams do on the properties that they maintain, but also CommunityCare efforts that branches are dedicated to, safety talks that they participate in, training and development programs, and team bonding opportunities that make up who we are,” says Candice Keating, director of marketing & communications for LandCare. “Showcasing these moments in our posts can really give clients and potential new team members a sense of our values and culture.”
Haynes says they’re mainly using their social media platforms for recruiting and to communicate why they do what they do.
“We want to make sure that we have a bar that says, ‘Hey, this represents us to people who don’t know us,’” Haynes says. “So, if we’re expanding into a market, and they’ve never run into any of our people and don’t know any of our people, then ultimately their impression of our organization is our online presence.”
Jacqueline and Abbigail Stuebs, co-founders of JAR Landscaping, LLC based in Athens, Illinois, say they use their social media pages as a way to show their everyday business life. They say their goal with their social media brand is to represent women in the landscape industry.
“When we first started on our social media platforms, we had a difficult time finding other women and we were oftentimes looked down upon and not taken as seriously,” Jacqueline Stuebs says. “We want to show that women are very capable in this field as well. We want to encourage other women, no matter the age, to be themselves and go after their dreams, even if it goes against the stereotypes.”
Types of Posts
Once you know your goal, it’s much easier to create posts that are tied to it. Rather than posting sporadically with no true purpose, you can focus your efforts on the platforms that are the most effective.
“Social media is a great way to connect with people; it gives them an inside look as to who we are as a company,” says Keating. “Whether it’s a post focused on how a branch is keeping their team cool during a hot summer day, showcasing round-the-clock snow removal efforts during a winter storm, or highlighting a training and development event, social media gives our followers a real-time look at what is happening at LandCare.”
At LandCare, they have a two-pronged approach where they consider the different audiences they’re speaking to. Each post is typically geared toward clients/potential clients and job applicants. They have pages that appeal to both.
“We have careers pages on both Facebook and Instagram that showcases life at LandCare while our brand pages contain content more relevant to customers and prospects,” Keating says.
She says the posts that receive the most engagement revolve around training & development, CommunityCare events that their branch teams organize, and showcasing the hard work of their crew team members on the properties they maintain. LandCare focuses their social media posts on LinkedIn, Facebook and Instagram.
“It’s important to utilize different platforms, as some individuals prefer to use LinkedIn strictly for professional connections and industry content, while Facebook and Instagram are sources for more casual, fun posts,” Keating says. “We’ve also found that sharing these platforms internally is a great way to connect team members throughout the country.”
Haynes says since recruiting is one of their main goals they focus on posts that tell compelling stories about why people should join their team. He says they share these posts on Facebook and Instagram as this is where their target audience is.
“If we’re recruiting for frontline workers and the frontlines are not on LinkedIn, ultimately we need to make sure that we’re engaging where they are,” Haynes says.
They share more brand-related posts on LinkedIn. LOVING has been experimenting with TikTok over the past year as the next workforce is said to be predominately on that platform.
“What we’re trying to figure out is TikTok is much easier for a person than for a business,” Haynes says. “What we’re trying to figure out is ‘Okay how do you get that corporate voice?’ And it’s a work in progress.”
Haynes says their audience responds the most to their social media posts about people.
“Our number one engagement rate always comes from people, whether it’s our team, whether it’s a client that we’re spotlighting or it’s a vendor,” Haynes says. “People like people. We can post all day long about what we do. But what we’ve found is who does it is much more engaging for folks.”
JAR Landscaping’s posts vary depending on what platform they’re posting on. On Facebook, they share pictures of their work, before and afters, as they are geared toward promoting their services to new clients. On Instagram, they share more of their daily routine or pictures of themselves as they are trying to reach other lawn care and landscape businesses. Instagram and YouTube have worked the best for connecting them with fellow professionals and small businesses.
“Our audience responds most when we post a picture of ourselves or a milestone that we hit,” Abbigail Stuebs says. “We have noticed that most people engage more when they are able to see who is behind the camera. It adds to our branding. Being twin sisters and owning a landscaping business is unique and we like to share that. By being personal you can definitely help set your brand apart from the rest.”