If you are the owner of a small business, you likely wear many hats and have numerous responsibilities. Social media should be a main focus, but may seem daunting at times. Keep reading for tips on how to make it work for you in the most efficient and effective way possible.
#1: Make it a priority
Committing to using social media to market your business takes some effort and patience. It can take up to a full year to get the hang of social media in the business realm and learn how to make it work for you. Don’t give up! It takes time to figure out how to best connect with your customer base and how to convert that connection to sales. Make a plan for when you will push out content, put it on your calendar, and hold yourself accountable to staying the course. Need help developing a plan? Buffer offers some strategies here.
#2: Show Customers Who YOU Are
Think about what keeps you following a certain brand or person on social media. Do they seem authentic, likeable, and approachable? Your brand should reflect you as a person, and your mission and goals as a small business. Although your product/service matters, it is just as much about connection with your customers.
#3: Try Video Marketing
Along with making a connection with your customer base through posts, utilizing the power of video can be a powerful way to promote your brand, give them some insight on upcoming products you will be offering, and simply putting a face with a company name. Most of us would rather support a business we know and have a connection with, so turn on that camera and engage with your audience. To get the most out of this approach, you might consider running a Facebook Ad.
#4: Use the Correct Platform
With all of the social media platforms available today, it can be overwhelming and confusing to determine which one best suits your small business. Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat….they aren’t all targeting the same audience and purpose. Facebook has proven to be strong in customer acquisition, but Instagram is more properly used for social commerce. Twitter and Snapchat tend to draw attention from younger audiences, so know your product and demographic and spend your valuable time marketing on the platforms that will best serve your needs.
#5: Focus on Quality Over Quantity
We have all clicked on an ad while scrolling through social media or entered our email to subscribe to a company to learn more about their products. While it may seem counterintuitive, sending less emails or posting less ads may be a more productive selling strategy. When we see emails from the same businesses every single day, we tend to pay less attention to them and they get deleted without even opening them. When you see the same ad over and over again on your feed, you may become desensitized to it and it loses its power. Make sure that the content you DO post is valuable, relevant, and puts your product or service in the forefront, while still focusing on building those relationships.
#6: Keep Them Engaged
My sister is a realtor and posts a “Question of The Day” on Facebook. When I first saw this, I was puzzled. Does she really care what their favorite childhood meal or first car was? Why isn’t she posting links to the houses she is selling or her website? After a week of seeing these daily posts, the answer was clear. The number of people commenting on that post and even tagging others in it far outweighed any clicks on a potential house for sale. Her profile page and posts were consistently at the top of my feed, due to the large number of comments that kept rolling in. When I spoke with her about it, she said that she has created more business from that simple tool than any other marketing strategy she had tried. When someone was ready to buy or sell their home, they immediately thought of her. Not because of a consistent bombardment with links to houses for sale, but because of the daily engagement and entertainment she provided by one simple question a day.
Forbes also provides additional tools for becoming an expert at social media and using it to connect with and retain customers.