National Clothesline
Posting tips for Facebook, Twitter
Supplying a good service or product to your customers is important — but these days, it’s not enough. You must stay top of mind with customers by engaging them socially as well.
To help, here are six tips to posting content.
Posts that strike a chord will encourage interaction with followers on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest and will help you grow your cleaner by establishing a core following and help with word of mouth –  leading to higher piece counts and sales.
1. Photos rule the social world.
Photos are an easy way for readers to absorb information, so they perform well in social spheres.
On Facebook in particular, they are more likely to appear in your followers’ center feed than any other type of post. Naturally, on Pinterest, photos are required for participation.
Photos can be of your store, garments that you specialize in cleaning and even your employees having fun.
Don’t forget to share any  interesting photos from related small businesses and sites you follow to build goodwill and prevent you from sounding like you’re always selling something. Also, photos of animals tend to perform exceptionally well socially – so get creative!
2. Ask questions. (Get answers.)
Questions can take different forms. They can simply start a conversation. Something as basic as “Whose ready for spring?” can be a surprisingly effective conversation starter — especially if everyone just had a miserable winter.
You can also ask questions that can help your cleaner. Wondering if people would see the value in having their polo shirts cleaned? Ask your followers if they would think this is a good service.
If you are planning on offering delivery service or currently offer it, this is a great avenue to promote your current pick-up and delivery or poll your followers to see if this is a service they would be interested in. They’re more likely to make a purchase if they feel they participated in the selection.
Or engage your audience with trivia about your business — whether it’s strange facts about the drycleaning industry or specific questions about your operation. For example, you could ask, “Who invented drycleaning?” or “How many shirts did we press and process today?”
Another easy approach: Post a photo of something related to your cleaner and simply ask, “What do you think of this [fill in the blank]?” Have your followers post their own caption to your photo — the more unusual, the better.
On Twitter, post the question, and link to the photo on Facebook or Pinterest.
3. Piggyback on holidays.
Definitely focus on any holidays that are historically good for your business. Consider posting a gift idea a day during the month of December and tips on how to take care of linen stains during the holidays.
And don’t forget those holidays that are less a focus for your business. On Independence Day post a photo of a flag and offer free American Flag cleaning.
Stay alert to quirky holidays as well. National Doughnut Day (June 7)? Offer free doughnuts in your call office to get people in your door.
4. Remember: You’re more interesting than you think.
You may be surprised how much followers enjoy getting a glimpse of the behind the scenes of your plant. It softens your business persona and makes you easier to relate to.
If you and your employees volunteer together or have an annual potluck, then post a photo showing this. It will give followers a warm feeling toward you, which is always good for business.
There are a lot of charitable organizations out there. Try to get your entire plant involved, take photos and post them!
One project, www.glassslipperproject.org, gives away donated prom dresses in the inner cities. Think about offering your cleaning services for these dresses and piggybacking a public relations campaign to help the community and get your name out there in a warm and fuzzy way.
5. Remember: You’re also less interesting than you think.
Don’t dive too deep into your personal life. Showing the behind the scenes of your office or the occasional cute pet pic can give your Facebook page some personality, but delving into your recent doctor’s visit falls into the “too much information” category. If in doubt, don’t post it.
6. Announce sales!
Your followers want to know about deals and sales maybe more than anything else, so tell them.
Be sure to include any time limits, and remember, on photo-centric platforms, post photos of what’s for sale.
These tips should get you off and socializing on Facebook, Pinterest and Twitter. But whatever you post, just be yourself. Social platforms should show your human side, not your marketing savvy. If done right, friendly conversations will convert into sales.

Neil Schroeder has been in the marketing industry for the past 15 years. He is president and creative director of the Golomb Group, developing direct response, social media, in-house promotions and web site campaigns for drycleaners throughout the nation. He can be reached by phone at (800) 833-0560, by email at neils@golombgroup.com or on the web at www.golombgroup.com.