Most small business owners know that social media can be a powerful marketing tool, but you might still have questions about how to get started: How can you devote time to social media while you’re putting in countless hours for your startup? How do you come up with new ideas for content? What social media platforms should your business use?
This article will address these concerns faced by countless entrepreneurs while giving you all the tools you need to improve your social media presence in no time. Ready to get started?
DEFINE YOUR GOALS
The very first thing you should do when creating or improving your social media accounts is to define a clear objective. Think about what you want to achieve through your company’s online profile. Are you aiming to improve your company’s customer service? Increase sales? Spread awareness of your brand? As author and business marketing consultant John Jantsch says, “…social media has to help you reach your objectives or you’re just wasting time. Don’t think of social media as just a megaphone for your business, but think about how it can help you reach your goals.”
Once you’ve identified your main objectives, then you can move on to selecting the best platforms for your business.
HOW TO CHOOSE THE RIGHT PLATFORM
It’s important to do some research to learn which sites are most used by those in your target market. After all, there’s no use putting time into an online profile that your customer base won’t even see! Regarding the demographics of popular sites, here are a few key points to keep in mind:
- If you’re trying to appeal to teens and young adults, platforms such as YouTube and Snapchat can be great options. According to a survey conducted in 2018, 78% of people aged 18-24 use Snapchat, and 94% of these same young adults use YouTube regularly.
- Facebook is a good choice if your business caters to older adults. About 68% of all adults in the U.S. have a Facebook account, and most report checking the site multiple times per day.
- 68% of Instagram users are female, and most are between the ages of 18-29. Many companies have accrued a huge followings on Instagram by sharing high-quality photos and “behind-the-scenes” sneak peeks for their audience.
CREATING AND SHARING CONTENT
This is (understandably) the biggest challenge that small business owners face. Consumers today expect brands to post new content regularly and respond to client questions in a timely manner, and larger enterprises often rely on an entire social media team to tackle these responsibilities. If your company hasn’t quite reached the point where hiring a social media team would be a wise decision, there are several other ways for you to be engaging and active on social media without having to sacrifice too much of your time (or sanity):
Follow other users and share their content. Use social media as an opportunity to network with complementary companies or local businesses. Follow brands you like or admire and don’t be shy about commenting, liking, or sharing their content. They will likely do the same for your posts, so your brand will therefore be exposed to a greater audience. You may even be able to form genuine business partnerships through social media interactions!
Give social listening a try. Did you know you can create alerts to notify you when people are talking about your brand on social media? Google Alerts is just one of the several social listening tools available online, or you can simply use the search functions on Twitter or Facebook to keep track of specific keywords. If a potential customer has a question or concern about something regarding your products or company, you can be the first to respond and offer them a solution.
Put the customer first. You will have to actively engage and interact with your followers in order to keep them interested in your products and to build brand loyalty. You can organically encourage discussions by posting polls, questions, and by participating in existing conversations. Just be sure to address any negative comments or complaints first.
Post content regularly. Posting high-quality, unique content is one of the most important factors in SEO and it will help new clients find your business. You can share photos, do a Q&A, host a giveaway, or post a short video of how your products work or what your company values are. Another excellent strategy is to share blog posts or write articles about topics your business specializes in.
Nearly all entrepreneurs have been told to start a blog, but this is much easier said than done. Writing entertaining and informative articles can suck up a lot of your time; time that you could be spending on your business! Instead of spending hours coming up with new content, click here to see how our skilled team of writers can help you gain followers while allowing you to focus on your company.