Launching rockets into space, making stunning electric vehicles, and protecting the world against a zombie apocalypse is all in a day’s work for The Boring Company, SpaceX and Tesla CEO, Elon Musk. The serial entrepreneur and real life Iron Man, has become a bonafide rockstar on social media in recent years and has become well known for his candid posts, visionary pursuits and milestone updates. But why is he so successful online? Check out 5 ways to channel your inner Musk below.
1. Be more human, less corporate robot
Elon Musk continues to captivate and engage almost 30 million followers between his twitter (21M) and instagram (7M) accounts. Not being afraid to show his personality has proven to be a major contributor to his success on social media. Despite the rumours that he is actually an alien, Musk has very successfully connected with his human audience through his wild, humorous and witty posts.
For example, by selling some unusual and limited edition merchandise, he managed to bolster profits for The Boring Company while increasing brand awareness and entertaining millions in the process. He first started off with selling ‘boring’ Boring hats, which swiftly escalated to branded flamethrowers, much to the amusement of his followers.
2. Provide exclusive content
What separates Musk from most other CEO on social media is his ability to consistently weave compelling original and personal content with exclusive business announcements. Many entrepreneurs will take the obvious route and regurgitate their carefully curated company press releases or worse, solely retweet their company account. Sure, it’s the safer option but not super creative or necessarily impactful. Why would news outlets or user follow your account if there is no added value compared to the company account? It also can feel quite cold and corporate and may not inspire mega engagement achieved by influencers like Musk. So what type of posts can you publish? There’s a plethora of options ranging from behind the scenes photos to personal life insights as well as marking business milestones on your personal account.
3. Use the power of your audience
Social media is a fast, efficient, and potentially free way to meaningfully reach your audience. Musk often uses Twitter as a customer listening tool to understand public perception and quickly gain market research insights. By asking for suggestions on how to improve his Teslas, he could quickly understand public opinion, identify issues, and allow the community to contribute to product iteration. This process is extremely valuable.
His audience instantly became invested in improving his products, jumping at the chance to voice pain points, inspire cool new features, and maybe even a direct conversation with the CEO himself. By using the power of the crowd, demonstrating that he values their insights and and taking the time to respond to several messages, he has created brand champions for Tesla while addressing many of the pain points and promising improvements.
4. Be accessible but not too accessible
Musk is one of the most well known CEOs on the planet right now, with the appeal of an A list celebrity to match. He has managed to maintain a balance when talking to everyday social media users. While he is understandably not completely accessible, he does reply sporadically to them. If he responded to every follower the incidences might lose their lustre slightly, not to mention he would have no time to run his companies or have a personal life. The key here is balance, he doesn’t spend 24/7 online but when he is active, he makes an impact. This results in fans clamouring for attention in the hopes of interacting with him and guarantees him high engagement regularly.
5. Build excitement
He fuels his follower relationship by asking questions, posting inspirational goals, and sending teasers to his audience. By simply stating that some big news is on the the way, Musk can create a buzz before the announcement and ensures that he has an audience primed for the news release. Elon Musk has a very distinct personal brand which aligns well with his many companies’. Did you know that great branding goes beyond font type and logo design? It encompassess things like personality, culture, and identity. Check out The Galactic Guide to Space Entrepreneurship (page 30) for the low down on how to brand and market your space business.
Posted by Niamh Higgins