Jump Start Your Social Media Strategy
Fast Fixes to Jump Start Your Social Media Strategy
Location, location, location
For small local businesses, it’s especially important to target users based on their location. This way, you can focus on the quality, not the quantity, of your followers and grow a more relevant audience. So many people are worried about the number of followers and fans they have, but that is not what is important.
To get the most leverage out of your social media presence, you need to focus on building your list of targeted followers — followers that can actually do business with your company. If you’re a small business that offers services only in Tampa, Florida, having thousands of followers across the country won’t help you. Rather, a few hundred followers who live in Tampa and are interested in your services will benefit your business a lot more. And targeting your audience by location is a lot easier than you might realize.
To find targeted users on Twitter, you can use the Advanced Search feature to filter out posts based on location.
Then, you can engage with those users, knowing they are in your area. On Facebook, you can post ads filtered by location.
The 80/20 rule
No matter what your social media strategy is, your focus should be on creating and sharing quality content. But not all of the content you share should be yours — in fact, most of the content you share should come from other sources that are also relevant to your brand.
Too often, companies only post things that are about the business and highly self-promotional. To avoid overselling your business online, you should stick to using an important strategy called the “80/20 rule.”
The 80/20 rule dictates that 80 percent of a company’s content should be a variety of nonpromotional content, such as memes, infographics, videos, pictures, articles [and more] that are related to what the company does or its brand. Then, 20 percent of the time, it’s cool to toot your own horn and promote things specifically about the business.
Focus on relationships
In addition to following the 80/20 rule, businesses should be careful to focus on the “social” aspect of social media and build relationships with other users.
Traditional marketing is a shotgun approach, and you want as many people as possible to see your newspaper ad, billboard or TV spot. Social media, on the other hand, is a participatory marketing channel. More than any other tool, social media platforms give you the ability to engage with customers, so in addition to providing quality content, you need to create real connections with your audience.
If users enjoy your content, they will follow your profile, and you will have the opportunity to continue marketing to them each day for years to come. The most successful social media marketers provide excellent content. They educate and entertain their audience. They care about them, just like they would a friend. They build relationships. And when they take this approach, the market responds. Their content is shared, they see an ever-increasing following and sales rise.
Schedule ahead (but don’t automate!)
When managing social media for your business, it’s important to maintain consistency. This isn’t always easy, but it can be if you set up a system.
The good news is, there are many free and inexpensive tools that can help you schedule social media posts ahead of time, and they can be great resources if you use them correctly. Schedule time once a week to sit down and use a scheduling tool like Buffer or Hootsuite to lay down a minimum amount of posts for each of your accounts. For most platforms, one post a day is fine. On Twitter, you probably want to schedule at least three.
But it’s important that you don’t use scheduling tools to automate your entire online presence.
These scheduled posts are the bare minimum and should be treated like a starting point to build off of in real time, or a backup plan when you don’t have time to focus on your networks.