Five Rules to Social Media Comments for Improved Presence

For lead generators, social sellers, companies, and individuals looking to increase revenue opportunities, we understand the value of making relevant comments on related posts.  Commenting delivers the opportunity to be seen as credible and relevant in the marketplace. Well-thought-out comments allow you to provide thought leadership on relevant topics.

Social media comments are also the opportunity to discredit yourself in the process of developing leads or attempting to increase influence. To safeguard your reputation as a thought leader and ability to generate leads through your social media presence follow these five rules of thumb.

1. Avoid Positioning Only Comments

It should be common sense, but social media comments have seen a huge influx of pointless positioning comments.  Avoid comments like : "Awesome."  "Thanks for the reminder." "Great Post."  We call these positioning comments because they don't add any value and are only added to increase exposure on the social media ranking index.  

Why should you avoid these comments?  Because they make you seem like the poorest salesperson on a used car lot.  The real message they communicate is that you don't have anything to add to the conversation. Remember that your goal is to create a conversation around the value that you add.  

Here is a real example of a comment I left on a prospects post and the result that came from it.

...It is clear to see that this strategic initiative goes a long way in providing the after sale care which will greatly mitigate  the buyers remorse your competitors are currently struggling to avoid...

Two days after I left this comment on the announcement of my prospective client's announcement of their proactive customer support initiative, the Exec. VP of Strategy reached out to open a conversation about marketing a new service.  They had seen my comment and had read my review of the book, "Sprint" by Jake Knapp. While it hasn't lead to new business yet, it has started a conversation that I am confident will lead to new opportunities in the near future.

2.  Don't Market on Other People's Posts

The easiest way to position yourself as a "Hack" is posting overt marketing messages on other people's post.  Believe it or not, I drew these real life examples from social media comments over the past 15 minutes on Linkedin.

I could definitely help you manage the marketing for your new service. I have more than 18 years ...
If you want this program to be successful, then contact me at XXX-XXX-XXXX. I have 7 year track record...
I can help you with this.  If you would like a complimentary consultation, please reach out by through inmail.

Sadly, these are real-world examples designed to generate opportunities by marketing  through comments on other people's posts.  And if you have ever received these comments, I am sure you remember how you responded.  

Instead, convey your interest in the project that they mentioned in their post.  Try comments like these: "I was fascinated by your approach to _______ and I would love to hear more about it.  Could we arrange a time to discuss your new strategy?"  or "I have seen a real need for this type of solution, and I would love to hear more about how you plan to integrate _______ into your service."

3.  Disagree once.

There is a lot of value to dissenting to specific points of a social media post.  And done correctly, this might be the best strategy for generating a lot of buzz around the value you deliver, but when you turn the comments section into a debate or even worse an argument, you damage your social media reputation.

Instead of responding to people who disagree with your comment (or need clarification) offer to discuss it with them offline or at least outside the comments section of that post. Remember, your goal in disagreeing was to generate a real conversation, and that can't be done in the comments of someone else's (or your own) post.

4. Ask Questions

If you see an area for improvement ask about it, and before you ask, no, I don't mean asking, "Would you like my help?"

Over a year ago, I was targeting a flood restoration company to provide consulting services. I had connected with most of the management team on Linkedin and Twitter and saw a post they had published related to building an affiliate network.  As they hadn't addressed a key market in their strategy, I asked the following question: "I love the power of affiliate marketing.  How are you planning on implementing commercial realtors in this affiliate program?" They reached out in about 20 minutes of my post to tell me they had been struggling with how to market to commercial realtors with the new program.  

5. Be Effusive.

In one of the first sales lessons I ever learned from my mentor, Robin Revis, I learned that enthusiasm for what someone else is trying to accomplish generates a lot of rapport with prospective buyers or clients.  Or more succinctly stated:

You can can catch more flies with honey than you can with vinegar.

As stated in Rule 3, you can agree, but when you do, find a way to agree with something before you disagree.

If you are looking to build your online presence, commenting on social media posts can be a great way to increase mindshare, relevance, and influence if you follow these five rules.