Social Media for Small Business: How to Stop Posting and Start Building
Are you struggling to get social media followers? That’s the number one concern I hear from small and mid-size businesses when building a social strategy. You can post all day long - but if you’re not being thoughtful and intentional in your content and in building your audience, you’re missing opportunities. Here are my top 5 tips to help you stop (just) posting and start building (a following).
Create SMART goals
SMART is a concept that stands for specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-bound. Consider why you are on social media in the first place and set up goals around those objectives. Assign a concrete purpose to all social media efforts and then measure and respond accordingly.
Identify an ideal audience
Here’s some advice: “Everyone” is not a target audience. It’s worth your time to consider your ideal audience - prospects, clients, job seekers, etc - and then map those audiences to the proper channels. You might even build out audience personas like you would in a web strategy. Spend time researching these audiences, look at who they follow already, and what challenges they are experiencing. Make sure your content reflects the insights you’ve gained.
Brands that have a high level of interaction on social media tend to post relatable items that show they are human. Try to get personal with your followers - engage, and respond to comments. Use humor, and share photos that demonstrate company culture or personality. Focus on relationships and not a following. A natural following will build if you establish relationships with people who do follow you.
Create - and stick to - a calendar
It’s not an accident that companies who create a calendar tend to perform better on social media. If there is a number one predictor of social success, it’s posting consistently. A content calendar will keep your social posting running smoothly by freeing up time, allowing you to tweak content in advance, and avoiding repeating content. Make a calendar and break it down by channel, optimizing for time of day. Naturally you will incorporate impromptu content or time sensitive materials as needed, but having a calendar will allow you to get the most out of the time you have.
You might be considering automating certain marketing activities, and for good reason. However, if you automate social, that doesn’t mean you can set it and forget it. For example, customer service matters need to be handled personally and not through auto-responses. Using automation tools to curate content or schedule posts can be incredibly helpful.
If you need recommendations on which tools might be most helpful, I have opinions - just ask! And be sure to read more about digital marketing in 2019 in our latest post.