Building Your Social Media Community

Professor John Benavidez, a Principal Lecturer at The University of New Mexico (UNM) Anderson School of Management, shared his perspective and practices for building an engaged and meaningful social media community for your startup.

Social media is a fundamental tool for entrepreneurs looking to efficiently and effectively connect with existing and potential customers. During this session, Professor Benavidez:

  • Discussed the different social media platforms
  • Defined how to develop a social media voice on your selected platforms
  • How to build and engage an audience, including content creation tools and tracking the effectiveness of your social media efforts

Watch a recording our his conversation with our community!

Unanswered questions from workshop

During the Santa Fe Innovates’ Lunch and Learn session with John Benavidez, there were four questions in the Zoom chat that he didn’t have time to answer. In this post, I, a former student of Professor Benavidez, will take to answering those questions. John also wanted us to share this resource with you. The link leads to a website where you can find royalty free images and videos of Albuquerque. The assets can even be used for commercial purposes at no charge.

1 – In regard to LinkedIn, what is the best way to expand your reach & get more views on a post?

Create content that is engaging and/or entertaining. “The LinkedIn algorithm aims to show users news, job posts, and timely, accessible content that are of value to someone’s career (whether as a business owner or employee), be relevant to the industry in which you operate, offer a tip related to business growth, or a career. It can be images, videos, LinkedIn article posts, external webpage links, or text updates”. (SocialChamp)

Find the optimal time to post. You want to be posting to LinkedIn when you expect your followers to be checking the platform. Take a look at the graphic below to give you a better idea of when to post.

Use hashtags. Using hashtags can help people outside of your following find your post. “The more you use hashtags on a LinkedIn post, the better it categorizes content and highlights relevant posts to each user.” (SocialChamp)

2 – Can you say more about how/why you use Hootsuite (or HubSpot, etc.) in this context?

As John Benavidez mentioned in his talk, the benefits of using such software to monitor your social media channels include: the ability to post to multiple social media platforms from one site, the ability to schedule your posts in advance, giving you an easier way to plan your upcoming social media content at a glance, and giving you a deeper look into your social media analytics that many platforms do not share with you.

Below is a screenshot from Santa Fe Innovates’ Hootsuite account. This view shows us the current week and the content we have scheduled for each day, giving us a quick glance of our content and the ability to reschedule if needed.

3 – Which content channels monetize the content like YouTube does?

Most every social media platform makes money by selling ad space on their platforms but there are a few platforms in which some of that money trickles down to you, the content creator. These include Snapchat, TikTok, Facebook, and of course YouTube. However, if it is your goal to monetize your content through social media, you must be thoughtful in going about this. Read through this article from to see how you can make money from social media content.

4 – With AI developments do you believe social media posts will also move in that direction?

This is a tough one to answer, however there is software already on the market that can post to your social media without you needing to touch a keyboard. They can pull articles from the internet and share them (either the full article or short clips) to your social media channels. However, this technology is not fully developed and using this often makes your posts seem robotic and lacking a human-like character. It will be interesting to see how Artificial Intelligence plays a role in the future of social media!

For an added resource, you can read the social media community lessons I learned from Professor Benavidez in his classroom.

Alex Ennis

About Alex Ennis

Alex Ennis is the digital marketing manager for Santa Fe Innovates. He is a graduate from the University of New Mexico’s Anderson School of Management. Alex is interested in the concept of a brand’s image and how businesses build successful brands.