Connected Coaching: Using Social Media to Stay Engaged During the Pandemic
Although much of the world is beginning to emerge from lockdown in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, we are still somewhat limited in our physical interactions. During this time, many individuals have turned to social media platforms to stay connected, and the community of coaches is no exception. Clients are still seeking their services—in fact, coaching may be more important than ever as people adapt to significant changes to their personal and professional lives. As you transition your coaching practice online, social media allows you to stay connected with existing clients as well as build relationships with new clients.
Here are some tips and best practices to help you along the way:
Maximizing Each Network’s Unique Features
Social media platforms such as Facebook, Instagram and Twitter all offer unique features that set them apart. Creating content that makes the most of these features can help you get noticed and make connections that go beyond the typical cross-promotion.
For example, if you are comfortable being in front of a camera and interacting with a live audience, Facebook Live is a great feature to explore. Alternately, Instagram Live enables you to join with a guest, so you can host an interview, invite a client to share their journey (if they’re comfortable with it) or even have participants hop on and off the video feed with you to discuss their questions.
No matter your preference, there are many guides out there to help you discover new tools and learn to use them.
Knowing What’s in Demand
We are all facing unique challenges right now. The impact has been different for each of us, so it’s important to ask your audience what would be most valuable to them. Some may need help adjusting to work-from-home life, while others who are furloughed may be looking for support as they plan the next steps in their career journeys.
As a coach, you are uniquely equipped to ask powerful questions to understand your followers’ needs. Social networks offer different tools that can help you collect responses—from polls, to live chats, to graphics—with a question prompt. Once you understand their needs, consider whether there are services you offer or could create that would help meet this need. Are there free resources you could provide that would help grow your relationship with your following for future opportunities?
For example, if your community on LinkedIn is filled with managers struggling to keep their teams organized remotely, one way to demonstrate your expertise and support your followers could be to publish and share a series of long-form posts on this topic with your network and associated LinkedIn groups.
Practicing Daily Engagement
Due to constant algorithm changes on platforms like Instagram and YouTube, posts are no longer displayed in chronological order, but rather, appear in users’ feeds based on engagement. Posting daily or on a set schedule can boost your engagement with your audience. If this sounds overwhelming, a tool such as Buffer or Hootsuite can allow you to plan your posts for several days at once.
Additionally, engaging frequently can keep your most recent post high in your followers’ feeds. This can help you build stronger relationships with your audience and keep your expertise top of mind.
There’s No Time Like the Present
As a coach, your online followers may look to you for guidance during this challenging time—and you have a great deal of insight to offer. Social media provides you with a wide range of tools that can help you demonstrate this, as well as expand and deepen your relationship with your online community.
No matter what you choose to try, or what network you focus on, the most important thing is to simply start. Your skillset as a coach equips you with the powerful questions and curious mindset that will lead you to use the tools social media offers to connect, inspire and help your followers make positive changes for themselves.