In this small businesses social media primer, you'll learn the break down of each of the different social media platforms you can use to promote your business or brand.
Social Media Optimization is the utilization of interactive online platforms to grow your business. In the pre-internet days, marketing was limited to television, radio and print advertisements. However, the advent of social media has allowed a different type of marketing to evolve.
Instead of talking at their customers, businesses now have the opportunity to interact with them on a personal level. Leveraging multiple social media outlets gives you an opportunity to hear your customers' opinions, unfiltered.
Use this to your advantage! Engage your customers; ask them how your business, products, or services can be improved!
When engaging with your customers via social media, you should follow the 80/20 rule. 80% of your content should be about things that your customers are interested in. The other 20% should be about promoting your business.
What follows are descriptions of the most common social media platforms your business may benefit from using.
Facebook is an excellent marketing tool that will help you grow your brand, engage and interact with your customers, run ads and promotions, and gain valuable insight into your target demographic. It can also increase your web traffic.
Increased Brand Recognition and Loyalty
Facebook increases your visibility and makes you instantly accessible to new customers and potential leads.
Engage Your Customers
The more you engage your followers on Facebook, the more exposure your business page will get. Sharing content is the key to this.
Gain Customer Insight
Facebook lets you get to know your customers in a way that no other medium can.
Run Affordable, Highly Targeted Ads
Facebook allows you to run targeted advertisements based on location, age, demographics, interests and behaviors.
Provide A Richer Customer Experience
Maintaining and developing your relationships with your clients is absolutely crucial. Facebook enables this by allowing you to communicate instantly with your customer base
Twitter is like a mass scale conversation that anyone can join at any time. It is very useful for making business connections and building relationships.
Increase Brand Awareness
Engage with your followers by posting regularly. Get involved in trending topics and make use of hashtags to increase exposure.
Keep Up To Date With Your Industry, Customers, & Competitors
The comprehensive search feature makes it easy for you to stay informed with developments in your sector, and you can even track your competitors to make sure they don’t have any edge over you.
Connect with Influential Brand Advocates
Twitter enables you to engage with people who wouldn’t normally be in your networking circle. Make use of this by interacting with brand influencers.
Provide Customer Service
The succinct nature of Twitter makes it an ideal platform for customer service. Solve your client’s issues quickly without any long drawn out exchanges.
Linkedin allows you to connect with people within your industry, raise your business profile, reach out to potential new leads, become a thought leader in your area of expertise and scout for prospects.
Help Your Brand Get Discovered
Making connections is at the heart of Linkedin. Join as many groups relevant to your industry as you can, and become an active participant in group discussions.
Scout For Prospects
Use the Advanced Search feature to find people in the industry that your products and services target.
Targeted self-service ads are relatively inexpensive and easy to manage. Boost your content and promote your brand to the exact demographic you wish to reach
You can use YouTube to boost brand recognition, to advertise your products and services, to promote your retail operation and to increase leads and sales. It is also a great platform for posting instructional and tutorial videos related to your business.
Drive Brand Awareness with Content That Meets A Need
Try to identify possible ‘how-to’ scenarios related to your business and use them to create helpful content that will answer your customer’s questions, as well as increase brand awareness. It is inexpensive and relatively easy to produce videos these days.
Increases Search Engine Ranking
Use optimal Video Keywords in the title and tags of your video to boost your search engine ranking.
With Google Adwords for Video, you can precisely target your audience by age, location, gender, and interests. You only pay when viewers choose to watch your video.
Instagram can help to raise your businesses profile, as well as increase your website traffic and soft sell your products and services. The image-centric nature of Instagram means it is the perfect platform for showcasing your brand through creative, appealing photography.
Raise The Bar With Your Brand Profile
Visual identity is the key to Instagram for business. What do you want your brand image to convey? Can you make a photograph tell the story of your products and services in an engaging and interesting way?
Increase Traffic To Your Website
On Instagram, your bio is the only place where you can put a clickable link to your shop or landing page. An entertaining and attention-grabbing bio will boost interest in your business.
The Soft Sell
Instagram thrives more on soft selling techniques. You want to build a relationship with your followers and you want to engage them to prove that your brand is trustworthy.
Pinterest is a platform where users share and save content to virtual pinboards. The vast majority of active Pinterest users are female. Unlike other social networks, it is more about sharing and saving content than interacting with other users.
Flaunt What You’ve Got
Use high-quality visually appealing images. Pin captions are important. Whether you are sharing an original pin or are repinning content from somewhere else, your pin caption should explain why the content is relevant to your brand and your followers.
Pinterest has a paid advertising option for businesses called Promoted Pins. You can target specific audiences with your content and you can choose to pay either for pin engagement or website visits. Pinterest make it easy to track how your ads are performing.
Pinterest Analytics is a great tool for monitoring how your page is performing. You have access to comprehensive data regarding average impressions and viewers, audience location, gender and language of audience and number of repins, clicks and likes.
As well as the opportunity to connect and build relationships with customers, with Google+ you also get all of the resources of Google at your disposal. Following the recent merge of Google+ with Google My Business, Google+ pages are now optimized for customers to find your company.
SEO And Search Engine Rankings
Google+ has a large bearing on organic search rankings and SEO. This is even easier to take advantage of since the merge with Google My Business.
Increase Brand Visibility Locally
Google My Business uses Maps, Search and Google+ to make it easy for customers to find your business
Create a community around your brand. Communicate and engage with people in your industry, from clients to like-minded businesspeople.
Collections allows you to categorize your posts into groups. You can create Collections and follow other people’s Collections that interest you. When you post content from a specific Collection, your followers can click into that Collection to view all of your similar content.
When you sign up for Google+, you get the support of all of Google’s resources. YouTube, Circles, Hangouts, Maps, AdWords, and Communities- all interconnected.
Snapchat is a one-to-one and group messaging photo/video-centric app. Launched in 2011, it is extremely popular among younger people and has over 100 million daily active users. The design of Snapchat poses a challenge for business marketing.
Give Your Brand A Unique Voice
Your content should tell the story of your business. Detail the products and services you provide. Remember to keep in line with the off-the-cuff tone. Be creative and give your followers a glimpse of the human behind-the-scenes element to your business.
Make Customers Feel Special with Private Content
The time-limited aspect of Snapchat gives you an exceptional angle. Run promotions and competitions exclusively for your Snapchat followers