If you’re in a small cpmpany or start-up you know what it’s like: With deliverables screaming for attention and to-do’s flying in every direction, everyone is juggling everything. Sooner or later, something drops. All too often, the first ball to fall is social media marketing for small business.
While managing your channels might feel less important than sending out that big order, never underestimate the power of social media marketing for small business. Or of finding the right consultants to help you build awareness and boost sales.
How to make the most of social media marketing for small businesses:
Social media is a powerful tool for engaging potential customers, building brand loyalty and driving sales. By creating content that is valuable to your target audience, you build a community of individuals interested in your updates.
This means that using social media effectively is a great way of winning leads. As this relationship progresses, people become more likely to convert and may even begin seeking your business out next time they need to make a purchase.
For all these reasons, social media really is your friend and if you’re a small business, you can’t afford NOT to have a marketing strategy for your channels. Or a consulting service to help you manage them.
With dot media, for example, you can draw on years of experience to identify the impact of campaigns and assess the effectiveness of your organic and paid social media. Getting a professional social media audit will help you assess your performance objectively, while offering recommendations on how to level up.
And that’s where things really get exciting. Combining the results of the audit with your specific target audience, brand and themes, your consultant will help you create customised goals and develop the right strategy for your small business to win on social media.
In the end, finding the right social media consultant will make your job much, much easier – as well as more successful. It will help you streamline your processes, target your approach and measure your momentum.
Remember that Olympic juggling act from earlier? Often, the first step to keeping the right balls in the air and mastering social media marketing for small business is choosing the right social media consultant to help you work your channels like a boss.
Social media marketing for small businesses: Some Pro Tips
The first step to building a killer social media strategy is nailing down your brand. Ask yourself questions like:
• Who are we?
• What do we do?
• What do we stand for?
• Who do we represent?
• Why does our business matter?
It takes work to get to the heart of who you are. But it’s worth it. Answering these questions will help you find your voice and values, the foundation of your key messages. Without these, your posts will feel scattered and it will be much more difficult to build momentum.
The next step is personalising your brand – which can be surprisingly tricky. What slogans, fonts and colours truly speak your language? Getting this right is an art and it can be very helpful (and save a lot of time) to consult an expert on how to communicate and visualise your company’s essence in a relatable way.
Once you know who exactly you are, the next question is equally important: Who are your people?
To do social media marketing successfully, you’ll need to do some research to define (and reach!) your target audience.
Again, a host of agencies can help you with this but the more information at your disposal, (age, location, gender, education, profession, hobbies etc.) the more targeted your strategy can be.
With all this in the bag, you can move to creating a social media calendar and setting specific goals for when and how often to post.
You’ll also want to keep a close eye on some key metrics. This will help you measure your ROI and make data-driven decisions as you work on optimising your strategy – but more on that later.
If you’re in a small team or business, here’s a Pro Tip for social media management:
You don’t need to be on all the channels.
It’s better (and cheaper!) to be on fewer platforms and do them well than to post everywhere… once a month. In short, it’s essential to be realistic about your capacity and focus on quality over quantity.
The smart move for a small business is to choose about 3 platforms that match your audience demographics and focus on creating great content for those. This will save you time AND grow awareness of your brand where your potential customers are most active.
Facebook, Instagram and Youtube are powerful platforms with well-developed user bases and capacities for hosting businesses. They dominate the social sphere for a reason. At the same time, platforms like LinkedIn, TikTok or Pinterest might also be exactly where to find your audience.
The reason I’m highlighting this second group is that many businesses are seeing great B2B results from leveraging LinkedIn as a magnet for professionals, while TikTok is *the* place to be if your audience is Gen-Z and Pinterest is a popular alternative (or supplement) to Instagram with a large following.
It’s wise to know your limits when it comes to doing social media. It’s also essential to know where to find your people. Once you’ve established how many channels you can (really) manage and considered which platforms suit your business and audience best, it’s time to begin posting.
Here too, it’s important to bear your selected platforms in mind and follow some golden rules of content creation, which we’ll look at next.
When it comes to actually setting up your online presence and crafting posts, the most important rule of social media marketing is to be consistent. Practically, this means:
• Posting (at least!) once a week
• Finding your specific voice and sticking to it
• Leaning into a handful of key themes
Perhaps you are beginning to see why taking the time to define your brand is such an important investment? Over time, consistent messaging will create a clear picture of who you are and what you offer.
I can’t overemphasise how vital this is – when a user lands on your page, you’ll have a few seconds to make a good impression and answer basic questions.
If they can’t find relevant content quickly, they’ll leave.
So if your business is at the beginning of its social media journey and your posts just aren’t getting the traction you’re hoping for, JUST KEEP GOING.
Overnight miracles are rare and it’s normal to need some time to find your following. You’ve got this!
Posting regularly lets you tell your story and build your online presence, step by step. Sure, getting some advice from an expert on how to tweak your content can’t harm. But mixing consistency with a bit of faith and patience goes a long way to growing your platform and getting results.
Real magic takes time.
Even established businesses consider consistency a must. Because it builds trust with audiences. Steady instalments of interesting content don’t only keep your community engaged – they show your followers they can rely on you and your brand to deliver.
This point might sound like a contradiction to the last but to be successful on socials, you’ll also want to diversify your content. Within the boundaries of consistency, play around with different ideas and test what works. Find out what themes attract buzz… and which don’t!
You’ll also want to spice up your channels by trying different formats. Some platforms have limited options but others (like Facebook) have a big tool belt to choose from.
Popular formats worth test driving include:
• Live videos
• Images (Hint: Canva is great for creating simple graphic designs)
It’s also worth saying that each social platform has its own unique flavour. While they share base similarities, the rules of engagement (and even the algorithms) are slightly different for each. So avoid one-platform-fits-all content! Make sure you are tailoring your posts to meet your audience where they are at or get hold of a social media expert to help you do that.
Not only should you keep the channel in mind when you’re experimenting with your content but also the size of your business. Informative posts and content your users identify with tend to perform well for small businesses.
A good place to start could be highlighting some industry trends or sharing Pro Tips and How-To guides. Or featuring customer-generated content. Helpful, relatable posts are shareable and invite interaction. And are great for your business!
Lastly, keep experimenting even after you’ve found your groove. Social media is always evolving – meaning there’s no getting comfortable….
Change is an inevitable part of the journey in social media marketing and regularly revisiting your approach is a great way of staying on top of your game.
Finding the right social strategy can really boost sales in a small business. It’s not always easy to find a winning formula, though, especially if you have to guess what’s working with your target audience. Or what isn’t …
That’s why tracking relevant data can make all the difference in your social campaigns. Monitoring the right metrics will help you measure your impact, make targeted decisions and customise your content accordingly.
What exactly you track may differ depending on your goals but on the whole, these metrics are usually barometers of success:
• Follower base
• Audience reach
• Organic vs paid growth
All that data is available on your social media dashboards but to really know how you’re doing, you’ll want to use a tool that helps you dig a little deeper.
There are a host of great options out there but most small businesses swear by Google Analytics (or the newer version, G4). G4 is a beast of a tool and what’s more, the free version is equipped with all the essential features and gives you access to a host of key insights, including:
• The number of visits to your website through your socials
• Social media shares of landing pages
• The length of visitors’ sessions
• Which campaigns are attracting the most traffic
• And importantly, which campaigns are actually leading to conversions
Monitoring metrics like these are very helpful for accurately measuring your performance and adjusting your approach for maximum impact.
Certainly, there’s quite a journey from doing an initial social media audit to mastering your analytics but with consistency, perseverance and the right consultants to support you, it’s a question of time before your channels start taking off. Just keep going!
Written by Anita Goldswain for [dot]edit media. Anita is a digital content consultant who focuses on SEO, social media management and copywriting.