Best Small Business Social Media Tips
According to a new study from Edelman, social media is the medium that most consumers say they can’t live without. As a result, social media’s importance in a business’s marketing...
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According to a new study from Edelman, social media is the medium that most consumers say they can’t live without. As a result, social media’s importance in a business’s marketing mix is continuing to grow faster and faster – which can be a great thing! It’s basically a low cost way to reach more people and grow your business. As long as you know what you are doing. Here are some tips to make sure you are on the right track.
A company’s social media accounts should be treated differently than your personal ones. Even though you probably decide to take a picture for Instagram relatively in the moment, the best brands rarely post anything without planning it out well in advance and taking into consideration an overall strategy.
If you just post whatever, whenever, the odds that what you are saying will magically turn into a cohesive story that becomes your company’s game-changing brand are slim. Posting willy-nilly like this is essentially the equivalent of hitting random keys and pressing send. Instead, the best social media strategies have a WHY, a WHO and a HOW.
The “why” should be along the lines of: why are you posting? If your company is launching a new product for babies, then that’s your why. The “who” might be parents. Not just parents though, but moms; not just moms, but new moms.
Then, dive even deeper: what would a post for new mom look like? This is important because different posts entice different people. A new mom who lives in Texas probably will not be enticed by the same type of post as a thirteen year old in Vermont. Therefore, the “how” focuses on how you will reach your specified target. Which platform or platforms are best suited for relaying your specific message?
If the why, who, and how plus learning all the ins and outs of each platform (Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, Snapchat, LinkedIn, etc, etc.) and which “voice” is appropriate for each, sounds like it would be a lot for you to handle right now, then it may be best for you to hire a professional. Avoid hiring an intern because they say they know how to use Instagram and Facebook.
All social media platforms are designed to be easy to use – being good at using them effectively is where it gets trickier. Experience is key here, so if you are going to pay someone to tackle your social media, invest that money in someone who knows what they are doing.
A social media strategy’s best friend is an editorial calendar. That is, you will need a general idea of when you will be posting your “why”, “who” and “how.” In other words, all posts should support your brand strategy and specific campaigns.
For example, if a non-profit is hosting a fundraiser, they will have posts before the event to help raise awareness for it, posts during the fundraiser to thank sponsors, show how much fun everyone is having, etc, and posts after to thank everyone who came and donated to their cause (and probably even more sponsor shout-outs, just for good measure).
In addition to being easy to use, social media is also fun! For some people, there’s nothing like the feeling of watching the retweets, likes or shares of your posts come rolling in. If you don’t get what all the hype is about, don’t panic. Just dipping your toe into the world of social media before you are comfortable diving in can still do great things for your business – just remember to have a plan!
About Weslie Oeftering: Weslie is a student at The University of Texas at Austin and Swyft’s resident PR and marketing intern. She supports clients with social media, blogging, and tech PR activities. Swyft is a tech PR firm in Denver, Austin, Houston, and Antwerp that provides PR services and trade show PR support for tech companies around the world. Some of their services include media relations, content and inbound marketing, CPC campaigns, and marketing automation consulting.