Beginners Tips – Social Media for Business

If you run a small business the chances are someone has said to you i’ll like you on Facebook or I’ll follow you on Twitter. If you smiled when they said that… great,  if you curled your lip and said what? – You need some help implementing your Social Media for Business strategy.

Recently helped 2 small businesses sort out their social media profile and they have already noticed the benefit. Below are some examples of the kind of things I put in place and some helpful tips to get you started in social media for business.

Windermere Health & Beauty

Run by Margaret Maton in Longlevens. She wont mind me saying that she hasn’t really got a clue what she is doing on Facebook. She has a profile which she keeps in touch with friends but hadn’t considered using Facebook for business.

I set up her Facebook page (in addition to building her a new website) and she has reached 66 page likes in a short space of time and recently used a boosted post to effectively reach out to over 3000 local ladies to attend a charity Tan-A-Thon.

LK One Hair Studio

Run by Karen Radford in Eckington. Another business owner who just didn’t have the time nor the desire to get into Facebook.

I set up a page, with logo and graphic, made her an Admin and began to share the page. Within the first day she was up to 50 Likes, after a month she’s driving towards 150. The few posts she has posted have organically* reached over 4000 people and she has seen an upsurge in bookings at her salon – and that my friends is the whole purpose of Facebook for Business

*Means she hasn’t paid any money to Boost the post.

So where are these Social Media for Business tips you promised?

I’ve collated a few essential things for you to consider, whether you are new to social media for business or if you have already started, these might just jog your memory.

 

TIP 1: Before you start, find out what fits your business, do a bit of research, ask your friends or others who are in business. Easiest of all is to look at what your competitors are doing. Don’t blindly pick a platform and use it or try and get yourself on to too many. Select the channel(s) that will work best for you. If you need some advise I’m happy to help.

Select from these 6 as a starting point – this is just my opinion, although I am generally right !!

  • Twitter – If you have lots of content to share and you are looking to engage a national / global audience, Twitter could be just right. Engage in conversation, Reply, Retweet, become someone worthy of following.
  • Facebook – A weekly (or more regularly if you can) post which is of interest to lots of people is great, or if you run offers or competitions. Consider boosting posts to gain a wider audience. Give Facebook Live video a go, talk about your business and successes.
  • YouTube – Owned by google, If you are confident enough to sit down in front of a camera and say something worthwhile, its exactly what you should be doing. Google loves video content and ranks it. If you are a builder, create a video showing before and after images, interview the client and hopefully show real feedback about your work.
  • LinkedIn – If you an an expert in your field or have something to say of value that shows how great your company is LinkedIn is a great platform. Its not Facebook (although some are starting to treat it as such) – Business only content, Press releases, product information, your thoughts on Brexit?
  • Google+ – It serves no purpose as a social media platform BUT it belongs to Google, and therefore they like it when you use it (it may therefore help your ranking. Repost your content here and if possible get some reviews – they will quickly appear when someone searches for your company.
  • Pintrest / Instagram – If you are an image rich company these are perfect channels to use.(florist, hairdresser, craft, design, jewelry and ANYTHING related to weddings !)
Social-Networking-explained

TIP 2: Have you got the time to do it? Sometimes no presence at all is better than a half baked effort. Make sure you set aside a portion of your day / week to compose content. This may be the only marketing you do so make an effort.

TIP 3: Schedule content. I’d imagine your far too busy running your business to be distracted by social media. There are lots of ‘FREE’ tools out there that will let you schedule your posts in advance and even some that will send out ‘relevant’ content for you. Check out the following:

  • Buffer – Buffer shares your content at the best possible times throughout the day so that your followers and fans see your updates more often. Get the most out of each post.
  • Hootsuite – Lets you mange ‘all’ (3 are free) of your social media platforms from the one place.
  • Postcron – Something I’ve started using recently – similar to Hootsuite but a little more flexible.

TIP 4: Google Local – Want you company to appear on the little Google Map? make sure your business has a google local page, get it verified, add content to it, get some reviews. Pretty soon when people search for your business the right hand side of the search page will come up with your easily accessible details. This is 100% essential for local marketing.

TIP 5: Send traffic to your own site. If you are creating content, such as a blog post or gallery, DONT just stick it on Facebook (they already get enough traffic) for everyone to see. Add it to you own website and share the URL on your channels. This will give users an idea of what the article holds and they will click it to view the rest – sending traffic to your site. More traffic leads to improved ranking on Google

TIP 6: Google Analytics. If you dont have it set up on your site – Do it. Its full of useful and pointless information, but its well worth reading through. If you do have it set up (Well done) use it to track which Social Media platforms are driving traffic to your site. Example – If you spend a lot of time on Twitter but no one comes to your site from it, it may be worth reconsidering your options.

TIP 7: Take your time – You won’t suddenly get 10,000 followers or likes over night. It can take a long time to build up a fan base and while it can and will be disheartening to only have 40 people read something you have written, keep going. Get your friends involved, ask them to share your content, spend a little boosting posts on Facebook and Twitter, you’ll be surprised how many people will start to read your content.

TIP 8: Ask for help. Facebook has over a billion users (most are real people) and certainly a lot of your friends will be on it. They will have seen what takes their eye, or makes them read a post, use their experience as an end user to help guide your strategy*

*I’ll talk about strategy another time.

I’m not an expert, I have far too many other things to do other than focus on social media all day. What I do have is experience of what works and what doesn’t. I have a surprising insight into a lot of businesses even though I have never worked in them. I currently manage 6 different companies social media, from Butchers, to Virtual offices, Recruitment to Marquees. Social media doesn’t have to be complicated, you just need to have a little creativity.

If you’d like to discuss any aspect of you current or future Social Media for Business strategy, please got in touch.



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