Social media allow for practically free channels of communication, customer service, and promotion. Without paying a penny for live chat, small business owners can interact with customers directly through social media, providing support and a sense of community. If you have a small business, social media marketing can help you flourish without spending a fortune.
Social media provide great marketing solutions as they let small businesses reach out to millions of people free of charge. While ads and digital marketing experts could be helpful, you don’t have to go big to make the most out of social media marketing. There is no need to develop advanced mobile apps or go out of your way to harness the potential of social networks.
With a good strategy, clever targeting, and open communication, small businesses can do wonders.
SMM Is Accessible And Affordable
The first objective of a small business has to aim for is increased visibility. Working on your visibility simply means getting the word out.
A clever marketing strategy usually entails creating a website and social media presence. The accounts have to be set up well, with accurate information, interesting bio, accurate address, and open hours.
This way, potentially millions of people can see your profile, posts, and contact information. For you, this service is free of charge. The world is your oyster.
Set Up Your Business Goals
Here is the catch, though. Do you need millions of people? If you are a local business, what is a good number of online followers that make the occasional purchase a good number?
Also, do you intend to use social media as sales avenues or as channels for customer support or something else? Do you want to drive traffic toward your website?
If you want to improve sales and brand awareness, you need to work on conversions and reach. Set up business goals before you start dabbling in social media for small business. This way you will stay focused and not risk falling into social media pitfall.
Don’t try to be visible everywhere and engage with everyone. If you are a B2B, work on LinkedIn but stay away from it if you sell embroidery.
Determining all these variables in advance is essential for crafting an adequate strategy.
Through social media marketing, small businesses can create a strong online presence and engage with consumers.
Once you have clear goals for your social media marketing, use these simple social media hacks, it’s possible to grow your business from zero to hero.
Choose The Right Social Media Platform
While Twitter is great for quick responses, it can’t really help you create a great brand image. Facebook, on the other hand, can help you make great posts, but its algorithm requires you to be beyond clever to hit those big numbers. Then again, both Twitter and Facebook are very useful for customer service purposes.
Twitter is great for engagement. It exposes you to a diverse audience and gives you a chance to pinpoint target members of your audience. There are many handy apps that can automatically sort out the influencers in Tweetosphere relevant to your niche. Once you find them, engage in 1:1 conversation and make the most of hashtags, links, and photos.
You can use Facebook for reviews, likes, and comments. Being open to criticism and honest feedback on Facebook will help you build trust with your fans and future customers. This platform is an invaluable solution for small business strategy, as it gives them a chance to customize audience and create campaigns for various types of online personas.
While ads cost money, using chat and messenger gives you a chance to do customer service for free. Facebook users love approachable business and if you form a personal relationship with customers, you are likely to get really good recommendations. It’s important to be available and give prompt replies to messenger queries.
Instagram may be your best friend for exposure if you’re starting small. With the power of visual narratives, you can create an online presence that can stimulate the users and earn you credibility.
Instagram is a great platform to work on your brand image. It’s a fastest growing platform at the moment with over 300 million users per day. Your target audience is right there in those numbers. With 4.2 billion likes per day, Instagram is always hungry for new profiles.
Regardless of their individual peculiarities, social networks have to be chosen carefully, according to your target market. Wherever the customers you are after hang out the most is the first social media you should go for.
The best strategy is to choose one network and stick to it. You can link your Instagram account to Facebook and work on them parallelly, but what works for one network doesn’t have to work for the other. So avoid going big on all networks at once.
You won’t need all of them and you probably won’t have the time and resources to establish a meaningful presence on more than two anyway.
Define Your Public Image
When you start social media for small business strategy, try to visualize your brand.
In other words, find the visual identity that will help you stand out. When you think about Coca-Cola, the first thing that pops up are red, white, Santa Claus, and happy summer days with friends. The company’s strong visual presence is carved up in our minds. You need to mimic this strategy and find a uniform way to represent your business.
By sticking to a similar visual style, you can immerse your followers into a unique storytelling experience. This experience will help you identify your brand.
Create A Sense Of Community
While a lot of social media tools for small businesses come for free, it takes time to use them correctly. To avoid wasting time on unnecessary actions, start with basic steps.
Open up to your audience and post engaging content. Don’t just post dozens of company photos or images of your merchandise.
Ask your audience how they feel about your new product. If you’re selling vintage clothing, ask them about their favourite vintage finds. Use this type of engaging conversation to find out more about your audience.
Value the information you get and induce a stimulating environment where personal approach matters.
Similarly, browse the profiles of those who follow you, check what they are up and about, comment on things that entertain and inspire you.
To put it simply: talk to people. That’s what networking is.
Start Small And Work Your Way Up
With such powerful tools, it’s possible to build and maintain a strong online presence with hundreds, even millions of followers.
This, just like any endeavour worth its salt, takes time. The best way to do social media marketing for small businesses is to start small and work your way up. Don’t try to power-push your account through paid ads and likes.
By climbing the obstacles you will have a chance to adjust your SMM strategy accordingly and save yourself time and nerves. Once you get some traction and learn the ins and outs of the platform of choice, you may consider paying for a boost to take you to the next level of exposure, but it is hard, strategic work and persistence that bring the best results.
Create A Personal Experience
Ask your customers about how they use your product or service. Ask them what they would like to see next. See who likes your posts. Analyze data. These actions are all free of charge, but they would make sense only if you have the setup objectives and goals to begin with.
Data is meaningful only as much as the frame against which it is measured. A thousand followers may be nothing for an international brand, but they can mean the world to a starting local business.
The clearer goals and objectives you have, the more value you’d be able to get from statistics.
Base your small business social media marketing campaigns on these premises and soon enough you can see the results. Of course, “soon enough” would mean months in most cases, but if you are starting up your own business hard work should not seem scary.
Blog post contributed by: Max Chekalov, AppGeeks.org