Small businesses, start-ups, and joint ventures usually operate on a shoestring budget. But, they cannot compromise on heavy-weight marketing either.
Luckily, social media sets the stage to shout loud about a new product or service without breaking the bank. Most importantly, some of the marketing avenues that social media provides are absolutely free! There are certain premium aspects which require a business to pay up as and when the marketing requirements scale up.
In this article, we are going to describe how various social media platforms like Facebook, Google, Instagram, and several others can be leveraged for global marketing by small businesses.
First in the list is the Internet search giant Google.
Google My Business
Google’s My Business is the quickest for a small business to get noticed in its immediate locality. In fact, setting up the Google + Business Page is the first step to get your business listed in the search engine results.
To set up Google My Business, following the below-mentioned steps:
- Go to www.google.com/+/business and find the business category into which your business fits
- Create a new listing for your business brand name and choose the relevant page type.
- Locate your business address precisely so that Google Maps will provide directions to customers when the lookup your business online
- You will be prompted for business verification through phone or postcard before the business is approved by Google in its listings
- Add other relevant fields like working hours, description, images, etc. to enrich your Google My Business Page
Once you are done with the above steps, your Google My Business Page will look something like this:
If you are planning to move your business to a new location, you can always edit the business address and ensure that Google always reflects the exact address where your business can be found physically.
92% of social marketers depend on Facebook to establish their social media presence. After all, Facebook is the daily staple for more than 3.9 Billion worldwide users. More than 30 Million business have Facebook pages set up to interact and engage with their target audience.
Creating a Facebook page for your business is simple & easy especially with tons of tools to create banners for businesses, product listings and even Facebook’s very own Facebook store concept.
Apart from Pages and Groups, Facebook Ads also provide an excellent way of reaching potential customers through their timelines.
In fact, Facebook advertising allows you to reach audience segregated on the basis of:
- Interests that a person has followed on Facebook
- Age, Gender & Location
- Recent Facebook activity & patterns
- Liked pages and Group participation
This form of targeting reach helps the exact customer range instead of shallow advertising that may not achieve conversions. Moreover, Facebook allows a detailed view of how your ads are performing and also the provision to manage multiple ad campaigns that are running simultaneously.
If you are a fashion, travel or glamor oriented business, then Instagram is an excellent choice to sell your products like hotcakes.
Instagram offers some inherent selling capabilities like hashtags, Stories, Images all of which are great means to keep your customers engaged and loyal to the brand.
Going a step ahead, Instagram also provides the utility for Live video streaming which can be fruitfully used for broadcasting new product launches or even for social influencer marketing using celebrities.
Another great way to Instagram to drive engagement and conversions is Instagram contests.
Here are some classic ways to run Instagram contests:
LinkedIn Thought Leadership
LinkedIn is often wrongly assumed to be a boring and dull place. But, actually, it is a great place to join and collaborate with top-notch professionals from a diverse professional background.
LinkedIn Pulse offers a micro-blogging platform where businesses to public Thought Leadership and personalized anecdotes about the Industry, profession or business outlook as personal opinions. These opinionated articles can have a multiplied reach across a cross-section of professionals who are not from a single industry, but also from other operational backgrounds. This would help increase the level of identity and reach that a business has in the market.
Twitter introduced Polls in 2015 and ever since gathering public opinion has been simpler and easier. The biggest benefit of Twitter polls is that you can see the results instantly as and when people respond to it. Users also have the option to vote in private thus ensuring you are able to get an honest and unbiased response from customers about your product or service without any social awkwardness.
Here is how Twitter itself made a poll to seek opinions from its users:
Similarly, your business can also conduct several twitter polls to know the pulse of the audience you are targeting.
Here is how you can set a Twitter Poll:
- Go to the Tweet compose button and click on Add Poll icon
- Compose your poll question. Just like a Tweet, your poll question also has a character limit of 140 characters
- Insert choices. You can insert as many as choices as you want each with 25 characters description limit
- Set the poll duration limit, say for one day, 2 days or a week
- Tweet the poll to get started
Some Twitter poll ideas you can try are:
- Do you like our new logo?
- Did you hear about our upcoming event launch?
- Who is in for a webinar on how to quickly reach your target audience?
In all these cases, in addition to setting the polls, you can also insert links to forms or web pages where users can find additional information
Facebook, Google, Twitter & LinkedIn are considered to be the pillars of social media marketing. However, there are several other forms of social media marketing too which you can use to maximize your social media presence and brand engagement.
As a small business, you can work out the above campaigns and taste a quick increase in social presence and become popular in the Internet circles.
Have more ideas? Feel free to let me know.