One vs. Multiple Social Profiles for Multiple Locations
As a company grows, it often begins to split up its marketing efforts. Case in point, they create multiple Facebook or Twitter accounts for each location. On the surface, this makes sense. It is easier to connect with the local community, and can relieve corporate owners of certain marketing responsibilities. But in the long run, this can be confusing for customers, harder on human resources, opens the doors for social media blunders, and in the end, increases the amount of communication required between the corporate office and each location.
What are some considerations?
1. Where are you located?
If you have multiple locations in one city, the answer should be a no brainer. You only want one account. Are you spread out around one Province? If so, look at the products, services, and sales your company offers. Are they the same across the board? If yes, then again, it makes sense to stick with one account. If not, in the case of some retail stores, you might start to consider the possibility of multiple accounts.
2. Does each location have the resources and talent to manage their own social profile?
The challenge of managing multiple accounts is that you have to rely on more people manually managing them. You have to train these individuals on the company’s: brand messaging; social media policies, guidelines, and strategies; and, the social media tools themselves.
Some companies are comfortable issuing basic social media guidelines and telling their local managers to “have at her.” Others, especially those in highly regulated industries, must be more rigorous in their approach.
3. How diverse are your local communities?
Successful social media marketing is a lot about building a sense of community and connecting with your customers. Having people directly immersed in the local community can only boost customer engagement — they know the local audience and how to meet their needs. This is the main reason why companies might choose to have multiple accounts.
Did you know that Facebook has the option of targeting your audience by location? Do you use regional hashtags on your twitter posts to differentiate between company-wide tweets and local events?
But, how do you manage company-wide campaigns? How could do keep tabs on all the conversations?
In the end
The mix of content posted at the local level is ultimately a combination of locally focused news, deals, and announcements with company-wide posts that are relevant to all locations. Finding the balance between content generated on the local level will be different for every company.
The key to pulling off multiple social accounts successfully lies in the strength of your social media policies and guidelines, and aptitude and training of those responsible for your accounts. These factors your brand message and company-wide campaigns are on point while giving the local managers the flexibility to engage on a more personalized level.