Disney has taught us a whole slew of social media lessons since we were kids. But they taught us more than to believe in ourselves, to help each other, and to wish upon stars—they planted the seeds to social media success over sixty years ago, and we’re reaping the benefits now. What am I talking about? Peter Pan. The guy was preaching social media etiquette all the way back in the ‘50s, and it’s about time we start picking up what he was putting down.
5 Social Media Lessons I Learned from Peter Pan
Provide a Solution to Your Audience’s Problem
Mr. Darling has had it with his rambunctious kids, and demands they just grow up already. John and Michael have absolutely no interest in doing any of that. Enter Peter Pan to save the day. When his audience was faced with a problem, he swooped right in to offer a solution: follow me to Neverland, and you’ll never have to grow up. On social media, it’s absolutely integral to listen to what your audience is talking about, so that you can understand what they want. Once you know that, all of your energy should be put into providing answers to the questions they’re asking. The only way to build your online authority is to become a reliable source for information that’s relevant to your audience.
Lead Your Audience Where You Want Them to Go
When you’re shopping in a store, and you ask a salesperson where an item is, wouldn’t you rather they walk you to the item to show you where it is instead of pointing in some direction and telling you where to go? That same principle of quality customer service applies when you’re interacting with consumers online. Peter Pan doesn’t just show up and tell the kids, “So if you want to get to this great place, hop out your window and try to fly there. See ya later!” That obviously would end poorly. He comes in, takes Wendy by the hand, shows them how to fly, and escorts them all the way to Neverland. If you want to make sure your audience gets where you want them to go, you need to take them from point A to point B. On social media, we do this by using calls-to-action to direct traffic where we want it to go, accompanying consumers through the customer buying cycle.
Establish Yourself as a Leader to Grow Your Following
In Neverland, the Lost Boys all look up to Peter Pan because he’s their leader. He’s earned their trust by protecting them, and telling them what to do, where to go, etc. On social media, users need to believe that you know what you’re talking about when you’re getting involved in social chatter. By committing to creating and curating quality content for your audience, you let everyone know that your company is the real deal, and they can depend on you for information relevant to your industry. When people trust what you have to say, they’ll keep coming back for more. That’s how you build a social media following.
Captivate Your Audience
If you’re only ever spouting out the same, recycled information that everyone else is sharing online, you’re going to bore your audience. While Tinkerbell may not always be calm and composed, when she has something to say, everyone gathers ‘round to listen, because she brings something different to the table. Approach your material from an angle that’s fresh and original, and you’ll impress your readers. The more innovative and creative you can make the content that you’re sharing, the more you’ll build a consumer interest in your brand, because people will want to know what you’re going to come up with next.
Make Sure You’re Always Reflecting Your Brand Message
People want consistency, plain and simple. You expect the brands you like and the social media influencers you follow to regularly provide you with what you’re used to. Whether it’s a certain product/service, diet tips, yoga poses, inspirational quotes—you go to these sources because you have an expectation of what you’ll get from them. If your brand shares all sorts of content with no real message, nobody knows what to make of what you’re saying. Peter Pan’s shadow has a tendency to run off on him and do whatever it wants, but he needs to chase after it and wrangle it back to where it’s supposed to be so it reflects his movement. Always take a minute to make sure that what you’re putting out there reflects the message your brand is trying to convey, because you want to build your audience’s trust, and you need to be consistent to do that.