Every small business owner knows that social media is an essential way of boosting their online presence. However it’s precisely because it is so popular that it can be a struggle for smaller brands to make themselves heard in such a busy marketplace. It can appear that social media only really works for bigger brands who already have a wide network of likers and followers. They also have big budgets to spend on high impact campaigns and often have a team of social media professionals managing their accounts around the clock. Of course in the face of this competition it’s not surprising that a smaller business could feel that social media won’t have the same effect on their sales and publicity.
However the good news is that social media can still be really effective for smaller businesses and you don’t have to have thousands of pounds or a large team to put behind it. In fact there are a number of simple things you can do to boost your media presence and as we have seen they can have a big impact on your small business. That’s why we’ve put together the following ideas to help you create a super-charged social media strategy!
As a small business it’s far more likely that you are going to be running your own social media channels rather than an anonymous team. This can definitely work in your favour as you can make the most of adding the personal touch to your brand and allow your customers to really get to know you. It’s vital to talk in your own voice on your social media pages in order to make your communications authentic, and people will often enjoy interacting with a real person much more than a large, faceless brand.
Some simple ideas for ways to add authenticity to your page are sharing photos of what you are getting up to in the office, telling followers about your daily life and views or even getting your pets in on the act. Everyone loves an office dog and they even have their own hashtag on Instagram and Twitter! Adding these unique elements to your social media pages means that customers get to trust you and therefore are more likely to purchase or recommend your products or services and to like and share your social media posts.
As a smaller brand it can be harder to connect with social media followers on a national level but where you can really benefit is by utilising your local connections and business networks. If you go to local networking groups, workshops or expos then always make sure that you take down the social media details of contacts that you make and follow this up by liking and following them. This can then lead to more follows and likes for your pages too. Take part in any local Twitter hours and spend some time each day commenting and sharing relevant pages and posts to build up a network in your area.
Social media is all about adding value to your customer’s lives and so it’s important not to make them simply another sales channel. As a small business you need to stand out from the crowd so research some innovative ways to grab people’s attention. Live videos are increasingly popular on Facebook and are a brilliant way of talking directly to your audience or you could take some stunning product photos that are guaranteed to be a big hit on Instagram. Some small businesses even set up Facebook Groups for their industry that they run and manage and this can be a fantastic way to get known online too. Take the time to think about what your customer demographic wants and what would really be of use to them.
If you run your business on your own or only have a small team then you won’t be able to spend a large percentage of your time managing your social media. It’s all too easy to get stressed out trying to manage every single social media channel available and it can also mean that you end up not getting the best out of any of them. Therefore it can be a good idea to pick the two channels that you feel most confident with and which you feel will work best for your business. If you are selling a very image based product you might want to focus on Instagram, if you are a fast paced business who interacts with lots of people daily you could consider Twitter and if you have lots of great content to share such as blogs and videos Facebook could be the ideal format.
If you are struggling to find the time in your day for your social media then you could consider working with a digital marketing agency. They can not only help set up your social media pages but they can also manage your social media channels for you. As they are experts in all things social media they can offer advice and support and help you to understand the type of content you should be sharing. It’s like having your very own marketing team! Many small businesses find using an agency to manage their social media can be a great investment as it takes the stress away and leaves them more time to focus on other aspects of their business.
So whether you’re a small business just setting out on your social media journey, or if you’ve been struggling to make your social media work for a while we hope that we’ve given you some great ideas to help you boost your online profile. Although you may not have the reach of the big brands or the large budgets that they have to play with there’s still a lot that you can do to reach out to your customers. Create a unique voice and let your customers get to know you as a person, add value and make the most of your local networks with other businesses. Make sure that you focus on the channels that will be most effective for your products or services and if you need a little extra support consider working with a digital agency. To find out more about how Wagada HQ can help support your social media please get in touch and we’ll be happy to have a chat.