December 18, 2019 Last updated January 13th, 2020 570 Reads share

The Complete Guide to Social Media for Small Business

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Statistics show that 47% of enterprises in Europe use at least one type of social media. Of them, 84% use social media to market their products and build their image.

Indeed, social media is one of the most important marketing tools for businesses today. It’s a great way to connect with your customers and reach out to those who may haven’t heard of your company yet.

The best part is – getting started with social media is easy.

Most of all, it’s not expensive.

Here’s how you can get started:

Know Your Audience

As with any marketing approach, to be successful in social media, you first need to understand how your customers behave. In particular, what social media sites or platforms they’re using or are most active in (note that users can be part of multiple social media).

It might be tempting to do them all – Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc. But the thing is you can’t. Well, actually you shouldn’t.

So, yes. You’ve got to do some social media marketing research. To know which social media channels your target customers prefer, you can set up a survey, look at your competitors’ social media following, check out their websites and research the social sharing habits of people who visited those sites, and conduct interviews with your ‘ideal customers’.

Create a Marketing Plan

Now that you know what channels you should pour all your efforts, it’s time to dive into the nitty-gritty part: creating a solid marketing plan.

To start off, you need to identify your goals. Why are you using social media? Is it to engage your current customers? Introduce your products to a different audience? Your goals need to be specific, realistic, time-bound, and most importantly, have a real impact on your business.

Once you’ve identified your goals, creating a step-by-step plan becomes much, much easier.

If you’re already using social media, now’s the time to evaluate your marketing efforts. Consider looking at how your competitors do it. While you don’t want to copy them, you can get ideas and inspiration from other businesses.

Lastly, decide on a posting schedule. The thing with social media marketing is that you don’t have to ‘overdo’ it. You do not need to post every single day or every after a few hours. But you have to be consistent. Once you’ve finalized your high-level marketing ideas, create a timeline of your marketing activities. At this point, it can be helpful to use some sort of an all-in-one marketing platform like Adrack that allows you to schedule, publish, and manage your social media campaigns.

Think of How to Engage Your Customers

The best thing about social media is that it helps remove the barriers between you and your customers. With features like instant messaging, commenting, liking, and social sharing, it’s like you are never far from your customers.

Research shows that 71% of customers are more likely to buy from a brand after a positive social media experience.

So you really have to focus on keeping your followers engaged. Apart from having an active page, the best way to keep your customers engaged is to answer their questions in a timely manner. 57% of consumers who reach out to brands via social media do so because they have inquiries. Answering those questions at the soonest possible time is the best way to establish a deep relationship with your customers and sell more.

Content Matters a Lot

What you post or share on social media has a huge impact on how people perceive your business. By posting original, relevant content, you can show them that you are an expert in your niche, which is a surefire way to earn their respect.

Figure out what types of content resonate with your audience and be creative with your approach in presenting that content. You can create a poll to ask what your followers want to know or learn about. Or, you can look at the topics they search about the most on your website.

You may want to use compelling visuals, catchy posts or descriptions, short videos, etc, or a combination of those.

Take Advantage of Paid Ads

You can start marketing your brand on social media for free. But if you’re not getting the results you want (or you’re not satisfied with it), you can combine organic marketing with paid ads. For instance, you can pay Facebook a few dollars to boost your post and reach more people.

Paid social media advertising is a cost-effective way to promote your business. Most platforms, use a pay-per-click (PPC) model wherein you only pay if the user takes the action you want. This makes social media marketing the most suitable marketing channel for small businesses that might not have enough money to spend on advertising.

Social media for small business is a great place to find new customers and engage existing ones. Hopefully, this guide has given you ideas and inspiration to pursue your social media marketing campaigns.

 

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Ana-Maria Sanders

Ana-Maria Sanders

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