Social media marketing is more important than it has ever been, and it seems like the amount of social media outlets is growing exponentially each year. Because social media is so important, it’s important that you use it properly if you want to help your small business grow.
Most businesses use social media at this point to try and gain new customers, but few do it the right way.
1. Be Social
Being social is an important part of growing your online visibility and communicating with existing and potential customers. Using social media regularly will allow you to keep in constant contact with people that matter to your business.
The easiest way to do this is to find an app online for your phone or tablet so you can keep up with who is mentioning you, sharing your content or adding and following you. Staying abreast of these things will allow you to respond quickly – even if that means nothing more than a simple thank you note or share. Hootsuite is a great tool for this.
Making your own social content is important, and it can help you get noticed. But without actually being social within the community, you’re not going to get enough attention for your content to really matter, even if it’s outstanding.
2. Don’t Limit Yourself
There are so many different outlets out there for your business right now that you really need to attempt to take advantage of as many of them as possible. Limiting yourself to just one or two social media outlets isn’t smart, so take the time to become proficient in ways that utilize all the different social media outlets, and make sure you stay up on new features that could boost your presence.
- Use Facebook’s Graph Search, which is still in beta right now. Graph Search will let you find users with similar interests – for your business, that means you can find people who are more likely to be interested in what you do.
- Add Vine videos to Twitter. Vine is a new tool that allows users to upload six-second videos. It’s new, but it’s going to prove important for small business.
- Always update your contributor’s section on Google+. You need your contributor’s section to reference every site to which you contribute.
- Use Instagram constantly. With Instagram, you want to share as much as possible. Try to share relevant photos sometimes, but it’s actually okay to add things that give your company and your page a human feel!
- Just use Pinterest! Pinterest’s largest demographic is women between 20 and 40. That’s a huge group, and one almost any business can benefit from targeting.
- Use Tumblr like a blog and upload snippets of content every day. It will help keep your company in your followers’ minds.
- Make videos using Animoto and other filmmaking tools that will appeal to your followers. Just have fun with this one!
3. Keep Your Eyes and Ears Open
Knowing what people are saying about your company through social media outlets is extremely important. However, you’re going to have to do your part to stay connected so you can see and hear people’s comments in a timely fashion.
Being aware of what your followers saying about you could help you develop a new product or make changes to an existing one in order to increase sales and customer satisfaction.
If people aren’t talking about your products enough to get a feel for how the general public (or at least those with whom you’re connected through social media) really feels, consider hosting a giveaway or two to try and generate interest.
4. Be a Regular
You can’t expect your social media campaign to work for you if just pop in once in a while and leave a comment without communicating with others and really participating in the online discussion. Being a regular contributor on social media outlets will also make users feel like your company is more trustworthy and will show that you genuinely care about consumers buying your products.
If you don’t have enough time to contribute to social media sites regularly, download a few apps that will do things like schedule pins on Pinterest and updates on Facebook, Google+ and Twitter.
5. Be Original, But Don’t Be Afraid to Join In
Original, unique content that helps promote your business is essential. However, you can’t rely on it solely to make an impact when it comes to social media.
One of the best things your business can do, and one of the most commonly forgotten things, is to join in and like other users. See something funny on YouTube? Share it. Find a funny meme? Share it.
Joining in the conversation, even if it isn’t related to your business at all is an important part of using social media effectively.
Image Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons