Ask the Expert — Kim Fleck, Social Media

Today we welcome Kim Fleck, social media expert! Thanks for joining us, Kim!

1. How did you get your start in social media?

IMG_1832Prior to starting Brand Fearless, my social media business, I was an educator for almost 15 years; most of those years were spent as a Special Ed teacher for students with emotional, behavioral and learning concerns and for a short time as an art teacher. My masters is in Special Education with a focus on behavior. I have a BFA in broad based studios and art education as well as minors in women’s studies, history and grad courses in art therapy. My life journey shifted after a serious medical situation and I decided to take my talents and various interests and reinvent myself. I have been in love with social media platforms for years, Instagram being my favorite. Brand Fearless came about in January of 2014 after working on my own platforms and author Liz Mugavero’s for a long period of time and then taking on all the social media platforms for the Wu Healing Center in CT and MA. I did lots of research into social media trends, latest books on the topic and joined online social media groups to learn more. It is a never-ending learning process but one I thoroughly enjoy. The idea of marketing so many different platforms for change, utilizing digital photography and being creative each day really resonates with me.

2. What are three things we should know about your area of expertise?

IMG_1833There are endless areas to focus on as a social media specialist. There will never be enough calendar days or hours in a day to target them all. In addition to taking the pulse of each platform, there are three areas I think are super important. 

A. Remain true to your brand. Effective content will vary widely but should consistently answer the question “Who are we?’ You must know your message, know your audience and spin the perfect story from your own intimate knowledge of your brand. 

IMG_1838B. Develop a deep understanding of how YOUR audience uses social media, then create content targeted to the platforms you use to tell the “right story” at the “right time” in order to capture their attention and then, most importantly, maintain it. Every time you engage you strengthen your connection to your audience. Stay fresh and relevant.

C. When creating your platform make sure it is attractive, think about design, tone and aesthetics. The beautiful thing about social media is there are so many different platforms to utilize that allow you to highlight different aspects of your brand and tell your story in various formats. 

3. What do people usually get wrong when using social media?

I wouldn’t necessarily say that this is getting something “wrong” but I think people are often under the impression that they can just jump on any given platform for a couple months, throw some content up and get a few likes, retweets and shares and that means they are all set. It is as if they think they will immediately see a huge ROI (return on investment) and everyone will flock to their website or business and purchase whatever it might be their brand is trying to sell. Social media platforms need constant attention. You must listen, spend time looking at trends, insights and learning your demographics. The idea is to use your creativity to showcase your brand and keep it relevant, not just charge out of the gate, IMG_1839bring in a few customers and then close up shop. People will often start off engaged and excited but then they lose interest, or time becomes too tight and then their platforms suffer. You must interact with your audience especially on platforms like Facebook or Twitter otherwise in the case of a platform like FB you will fall out of someone’s feed and your brand’s future visibility will suffer because of it. Remember it is not all about purchases, it is about building a following, a loyal community and later the purchases will come. Tell them stories they want to hear and make it simple, meaningful and relevant. Keep your audience’s best interests in mind and make the connection.

4. Is there a great idea you would love to share?

IMG_1835I think re-blogging, retweeting, sharing, liking, favoriting, pinning and engaging with various platforms similar to yours can be very helpful. For instance in the writer world there are often many cross over audiences. The  same holds true in the animal rescue community and the wellness community. I find this is spot on for almost all brands especially restaurants, breweries and small businesses. It is wise to watch what others with a similar “brand”  are doing and learn from their successes and mistakes. Also platforms that support one another’s efforts and highlight each other are often seen in a positive light by audiences. Share another brands book release, adoption event, community activity. Retweet a tip, giveaway or quote. Like a business Facebook page, follow on Instagram, like a post and comment. Again, it’s all about positive connections. 

“Logic will get you from A to Z; imagination will get you everywhere.”
― Albert Einstein

Readers do you have a question you’d like to ask Kim about social media?

9 Thoughts

  1. Great advice, Kim! Any advice on how not to feel overwhelmed by all the choices? I love your comments about knowing your brand and think it is something I struggle with.

  2. Hi Sherry I think the best advice I have is to take it slow and utilize a platform that “speaks” to you and your audience. If you are really comfortable with the platform you choose it will show. Stay engaged and tuned in to what the audience is looking for. Pinterest is often a platform that people feel comfortable in and they enjoy creating their boards, pinning new interests and exploring other users boards. Like I said before Instagram is my favorite because I adore digital photography and images are what speak to me. Everyone is different but with so many platforms to chose from you will no doubt find a few that really work for your “brand” and allow you to build a faithful audience that keep coming back for more.

  3. Thank you for this helpful information, Kim! I had the same question as Sherry. Thanks for your answer! How can we find you on Instagram? And do you have any favorite Instagram apps?

  4. Hi Susan I am glad the information was helpful. A few of the platforms I am on are:
    FB ~
    Instagram ~
    Pinterest ~
    Twitter ~
    I am always looking up digital photo apps and researching into new social media strategies. My most recent photo apps that I have been checking out and taking for a “spin” =) are Over, PS Express, Aviary and Mega Photo. I also have a Tumblr account, WordPress, Flicka and Google+ however I am more engaged in the ones listed above. Remember engagement is the name of the game =)

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