Four Social Media Tips for Small Business Owners
Social media is a significant force in different parts of our lives. From keeping in touch with family and friends and staying on top of current events to building robust professional networks, social media has something special in store for everyone — including small businesses. For many small businesses, social media is a powerful marketing tool that can expand reach, cinch sales and even scope out the competition.
If you’re working on revamping your business’s social media presence or considering making an account for the first time, here are some key considerations necessary for your success.
Assess Your Audience
When you set up a social media account for your small business, it’s important to go where your customers are. Your time and energy are limited, and choosing the wrong platform can result in wasted effort.
Take the time to review key demographic information about your customers, such as age, employment and income. Facebook is a popular one-size-fits-all platform with 2.93 billion monthly active users. Still, only some social media sites can boast such a broad reach. Sites like Instagram and TikTok are popular among younger users who expect eye-catching visuals and trends.
If you don’t have this information, ask your customers what platforms they use or conduct an online search for your competitors’ social media accounts to help determine which platforms you should use.
Set Your Goals
Like any other part of your business, setting quantitative goals for your social media accounts is crucial. These goals will help determine whether the time and resources you’ve spent on social media have paid off. Regularly checking your business’s social media analytics provides valuable feedback on whether you’re meeting your goals. Monitor these three key factors:
- Brand awareness – If you want to ascertain whether your social media account has increased the public’s familiarity with your product, keep an eye on your follower count, the reach of your social media posts and any mentions or shares.
- Engagement – Reviewing your likes, shares and comments per post and any mentions and replies can help you determine if you’re building a solid community around your product or service.
- Sales – Every business wants to generate new sales. If you’re using social media advertising to boost your sales, keep track of your social media conversion rates, cost-per-thousand (CPM) and cost-per-click (CPC) metrics.
Craft Compelling Content
Today’s social media is full of vibrant, high-contrast images and videos, but that doesn’t mean you have to be a graphic designer to get the job done. Consider these tips when creating social media content:
- Don’t go overboard on stock content – Stock photos and videos can be a cost-effective way to add high-quality visuals to your post, but don’t rely on them too heavily. Consumers respond better to authentic photos of products and services. Using too many stock photos can make your company appear disingenuous and harm your brand.
- Expand your toolkit – There are many tools on the market designed to help small business owners use their time more efficiently. These easy-to-use programs feature a diverse array of customizable templates that can turn photos and videos into eye-catching social superstars. Many of them are beginner-friendly and don’t require any prior design experience.
Excel at Engagement
Social media engagement refers to the number of interactions customers have with the content you share on social media. Every time a customer ‘likes,’ ‘comments’ or ‘shares’ your content, it shows they are interested in what you’re saying and your business offering. If your social account has a regular engagement rate, it can help you build your brand and increase referrals and sales. Here are some tips to help you improve your engagement:
- Prioritize posting – While there are many opinions on how often businesses should post to their accounts, it’s more important to be consistent. Many social media algorithms favor accounts that post regularly, meaning your followers are more likely to see your content. Remember to post by picking a set day and time or setting an alarm.
- Put the “social” in social media – Social media started as a way to connect people, and that’s still true today. If you’re unsure how to interact with your customers online, try asking them a question to get to know them better. Acknowledging their responses with a like or reply can help build rapport and a community around your brand. Remember to keep your responses professional and avoid profanity or inappropriate language.
- Research platform-specific opportunities – Social platforms are making it easier to engage with each other by introducing site-specific tools like polls and quizzes. Small business owners can use these features to increase engagement while gathering data or conducting a market survey.
Social media is one of the fastest-evolving and most effective tools in a business owner’s toolbox. By staying on top of evolving best practices and emerging social media trends, you can help your business grow and develop an engaged community around your product or service.
The American Business Coalition is dedicated to helping small business owners have all the resources and protection they need for themselves and their families. For more information on becoming an ABC member and the privileges that come with it, visit americanbusinesscoalition.info.