Jan6

Words To Live By: Social Media And The Small Business

Posted by Kelly Kirkham

Entering 2016 may have you rethinking your business techniques. If so here are some tips to remember before creating your social media strategies.

Social media is an important part of any business strategy, both online and off. To succeed with this there are a few important points you need to keep in mind to fully experience the traffic and attention that successful social media can bring.

In this post we are going to assume that you currently use social media somewhat regularly, and have that you have included links from your website to Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and LinkedIn along with some form of regularly posted content. If your site is missing anything from the previous list, we suggest remedying that as soon as possible.

For help getting your website up to speed, start with this series of blog posts.

Once you are comfortable with the basics it’s time to step up your social media game. Below are some tips from the experts that every small business owner should consider when creating a plan of action for 2016.

The concepts outlined may seem quite obvious, but they are often overlooked when plans are executed. This is why we have included tips from industry experts: their words of advice can bring new understanding to basic ideas that everyone should be following. Remember  that your plans for 2016 can be changed at any time – marketing strategies are flexible by design so if your original plan isn’t working as well as you hoped you can always change it.

 

  • Time Yields Best Results

 

Time is social media’s best friend. The longer your accounts are active and regularly updated, the more benefits you will see. According to HubSpot, “marketers with three or more years of experience were most likely to report an increase in sales attributed to social media.”

This idea applies not only to your social media accounts, but to yourself as well. The more experience you have with social media and the more time you spend on creating an online reputation, the more rewards you will reap. Beginners specifically need to keep this in mind, as social media isn’t an overnight success but rather a long term investment of your time and efforts.

  1. Remember The Competition

Almost every other business in the world is using social media, and many use the same exact strategies you do. This is an obvious tip, but if kept in mind can radically change your social media strategy. Sales Force writes that the best social media campaigns are “creative, inspiring or otherwise notable” in ways that are unique to their brand and reputation.

If you really want to gain recognition your social media efforts will need to represent something that is specifically YOU, meaning that you will need to come up with something from scratch, not gleaned from  any blog post or forum. Brainstorm the characteristics that define your brand and what this means to your customers. Trust us when we say that the inspiration you need is already there, you just have to uncover it.

  1. Analytics Aren’t Everything

We love Google Analytics just as much as the next person, and we understand how helpful using these analytics can be. Keep in mind though that a website’s analytics aren’t everything. Entrepreneur writes that “your social traffic numbers can’t tell you how engaged your visitors are, and your share counts can’t tell you the reputation value of your content.”

Five loyal and engaged followers are worth much more than a hundred unresponsive followers. Engaged readers have the power to provide insight into your business from an outside point of view, something corporations pay hundreds of thousands of dollars for. You can get this for free on social media, you just have to work for it.

  1. Be Social

Social media is ‘social’ for a reason. If this very important aspect is forgotten, you have already lost the game. Interacting with your followers is the single most important way to spend your time within social media. By responding to any inquiries immediately and displaying a bit of personality within your posts, you can double or even triple your responses and follows.

Hubspot reports that “something as simple as a smiley face emoticon in your post can increase likes by 57 percent, comments by 33 percent and shares by 33 percent over posts without them.” This doesn’t mean you should overload your posts with emojis, but instead show a bit of character when interacting and responding to your followers. Social media can be fun, which is of course the whole point!

Keeping these simple yet critical tips in mind can transform your social media efforts. With the New Year ringing in your business has a great reason to kick off with something new and exciting. Social media – when combined with search engine optimization (SEO) – can increase traffic and conversions within your site and help you establish the brand reputation you need. Good luck in all your endeavors in the New Year

To learn more about how social media and SEO can boost your business visit: Midphase.com

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