No matter what your products or services are, one thing is undeniable – you need to be present on social media if you want your brand and business to grow. And you need to be there in the right way. Social media world offers almost endless opportunities, but only if you manage your campaign carefully.

This whole universe of tweets, pins, snaps, and likes can be pretty overwhelming, especially for a small business.  You need to know the latest trends, but you also need to keep track of statistics. It can be a great way to connect with your customers and prospects as a small business owner, but it can also turn into a distracting time suck if you do it wrong. If you’re not careful it can even backfire and alienate your prospects and customers.

In other words, it’s a map where the X marks the success, but some roads can lead to dead ends and waste of time and money. That’s why you’re gonna need some expert tips to hit the spot for your small business.

1. Know Why You’re There

The most common mistake that small business owners make is that they use social media just as a megaphone for their business, instead of thinking about how it can help them reach their goals. They know that they must be there, but they haven’t taken the time to figure out why. They just fear they’ll be left behind if they’re not present in all the places. But if social media doesn’t help you to reach your objectives, then it’s just a waste of time. That’s why the first step should be to clearly define your marketing objectives, so you can figure out how to approach social media in order to achieve them. As professionals from Eight Clients in Melbourne constantly prove, only intimate insights get results. And you can’t even begin to utilize those insights if you don’t actually know what you’re looking for.

2. Questions & Answers

It is undeniable that Facebook adds can be a very useful tool, but if you’re not able to start a conversation with your prospects and customers you won’t be able to get the most out of this platform. Since Facebook uses an algorithm which rewards posts that have interaction if no one responds to your posts they just won’t show them anymore. Their goal is quite simple – to keep people on the website, which they can accomplish only if they stick to posts and stories which people find interesting. They’re still changing their algorithm even further, pushing it in the direction to favor content from friends over that from companies and other pages.  This means that it all comes down to questions and answers. Sure, attracting post are still important, but now you need to boost them with attached questions that will start a conversation and respond to all answers that come your way.

3. Kill The Monologue

Probably the most important lesson you need to learn about social media is that it’s not all about you.  Considering the above-mentioned importance of the interaction, there is no place for monologues in which you share your special deals on your services and products or all the awards you’ve won with the world. The vastness of the social media world enables you to gain a huge amount of followers, but that doesn’t mean anything if you don’t connect them in a meaningful way. And that requires appreciation – you need to recognize and thank all those people who have supported and helped your business. Just think about up to 20 most important people in your line of business and give them recognition for their tweets and posts by sharing, following, and likes. They will certainly appreciate the gesture, which will drive them to continue with supporting your efforts.

4. Catch Their Eye

The importance of adding videos and photos to your social media content increases with the steady decrease in our attention spans. It is not only a great way to show off your products, but it’s mandatory if you wish to boost engagement. If your business is a service-based one, the absence of products is not an excuse for the absence of photos – choose the ones that will complement the text. We don’t need to mention the importance of visually-oriented platforms such as Pinterest and Instagram, but you should know that pretty pictures are not enough if you really want to stand out – they need to be unique. That’s the point of social media – it’s personal. Use your visuals to convey a personal picture of your brand, not simply to promote your business. If you want to be different and get above the noise, you need a persona.

5. Don’t Spread Yourself Thin

Many small business owners think they need to be present across all platforms right away, but this approach actually decreases efficiency and can cause a serious waste of time. You should always pick and dominate one social platform in the beginning. And not just any platform – invest some time in research and figure out where your target audience spends their time online. This doesn’t mean you shouldn’t also claim your profiles on other networks, but focus most of your time on the one you’ve chosen. You’re gonna need some time and effort to dominate it completely – it’s wise to start by sharing only other people’s content for a couple of months, or at least four pieces of their content for every piece of your own. As you develop consistency in posting, you can start claiming your other profiles. You just need to plan it right and develop a strategy that will bring better results with less effort and time. You probably won’t be able to do everything yourself, so you need to figure out which activities you can assign to contractors and employees and which you can automate.

These tips may not seem so expert at first glance, but the truth is that they’re the product of experience which is often overlooked. When the social media world is concerned, the key to success lies in carefully considering all the things people have taken for granted.

About Jake Idoko