In the restoration industry, companies are always trying to get a lead on their competition. The newest way of doing this is through social media. While social media is great and mostly a free resource, you need to have direction when creating your campaigns instead of just throwing noodles at the wall to see if they stick. Social media is more of a long-term commitment than just a quick 140-character blast if you want to get the most out of it. Here are some tips to help you maximize the effectiveness of your social media.

Social Media is best for spreading the word about what services you offer, whether that’s reconstruction, mold remediation, board up and emergency services, etc. Offer advice, since you are the expert on subject matter that people asking about. Always go and beyond and offer some kind of discount or special. Bait the hook, and when they come back for more, push the sale.

Don’t expect your first tweet or Facebook post to automatically get you double digit followers. Just like any marketing campaign, it takes time to build your following. Don’t get discouraged by gaining followers slowly—it’s always better to go forward than backwards. Don’t let social media take out big chunks of your workday but do schedule a small amount of time for it every day. Also have an aimed outcome when updating social media, meaning don’t aimlessly like something or take an hour to send one tweet, but have calculated measures to ensure that the time spent on social media is getting the same output you would get from any other marketing project. Using a product like DASH that allows you to calculate ROI on marketing campaigns would be an easy way to maximize your social marketing efforts.

Social media is a great way to engage with your customers without breathing down their neck to make a purchase. You can keep your name in front of them until they are ready to return for business. Just like any effort, take the time to evaluate what you are doing and retool if you need to. So get the best 140 characters you can think of together and go be somebody!