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On the Enplug blog, we talk a lot about what a boon a social media wall can be to your business’ marketing efforts. But if you’re not familiar with what a social media wall actually is, you don’t just need use case examples—you need an overview of the basics.

Social media walls are a simple concept to understand, and once you know what they are, you can decide whether they’re something your business needs. (If you’re looking to expand your social media marketing without having to expend too many resources, you’ll definitely want to read on.)

So here’s the scoop.

1. What is a social media wall?

A social media wall is a live or aggregated (and usually filtered) feed of social posts from sites like Twitter, Instagram and Facebook that are displayed on any digital signage display. Posts using specific hashtags or handles are funneled to the display, which rotates in new content automatically.

2. What is it good for?

Social media walls are a great way to engage customers and guests with your brand by encouraging them to share posts that will appear on-screen—sometimes within seconds, depending on your software.

Think of it as free social media marketing from your customers. Not only are they engaging with your business’ social outlets, but they’re also opting in to take on the task of promoting your business to their followers.

social media wall

3. What about filtering inappropriate content?

Most digital signage softwares with social media walls have filtering built in. With Enplug, you can enable automated or manual filtering (whichever you’re more comfortable with). For your Instagram wall, for example, you can make your settings so that every photo with your hashtag must be manually approved by you before it appears on-screen.

4. Is it instant?

This will depend on two things: 1.) What software you use to power your display, and 2.) Whether your filtering is set to automatic or manual.

While most softwares lag when it comes to displaying a social media feed, Enplug lets posts appear instantly as long as you have automatic filtering turned on. If you want the real-time effect but are concerned about content other than blatant profanity (which filters would catch), you always have the ability to remove posts through the Enplug web dashboard or mobile app.

5. How should I use it?

Use a call-to-action to get people posting on your displays, making sure to indicate the #hashtag or @handle that’s designated to appear on the screen. Test out different social media campaigns and incentives to get people talking, whether by asking a question, sparking some competition or offering a discount!

social media wall

6. What kind of businesses use social media walls?

All kinds of businesses—from mom-and-pops to franchises and corporations—use digital signage software to power their social media walls.

• Marriott Hotel in Manhattan beach uses Enplug to share posts from Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Yelp. Photos and reviews from guests who enjoyed their stay rotate in with other content, like news feeds and graphics.

• Fremont College displays posts from students sharing events and accomplishments on Instagram and Twitter. The college’s handle also appears to show the latest news and updates.

• CREAM entertains customers while they wait in line (which often goes out the door!) by displaying their real-time tweets and Instagrams. They even give them a little incentive with the chance to win gift cards for more ice cream.

7. How can I get one?

Request more info about Enplug’s software here!

Read more: 3 Stats That Prove Your Biz Needs a Social Media Wall