Our social media news feeds are filled to overflowing of posts and articles that half of the time are pointless to us. There is so much content out there that it can be really hard to make an impact or float your business above everything else that is going on out there. But there is a way for you to be proud of your posts and make people more aware of you and your brand – and that’s by being passionate about your business.
Let’s be honest, it’s quite easy to put a quick Facebook post together and put it out there in the hope that someone will see it but it’s not as easy to create a post that is going to get noticed and create a reaction.
We need to stop ‘just putting posts out there’ and start being passionate about our brand, the products or services that we produce and put our enthusiasm into the content. There was a reason you started your business, there is a reason why you believe in what you’re doing, there is a reason why you want people to work with you. You have a story to tell, you have a drive and motivation that you want to get out there… and that’s the ammunition that you need to use in order to create a result.
Start with yourself and your story
This is a good place to start, from the beginning. What made you passionate about what you’re doing? How did the whole business get started and how has it built to where it is today? Take your customers / followers on a journey or getting to know the real you. Let them gain enthusiasm like you do and take them through all that you love, say, do in order to really understand everything that you’re doing. You want to create a bond, a trust with your audience and you want them to love your brand as much as you do.
Speak with relevance
As we said, anyone can create a quick Facebook post but does it have meaning, is it true to your business, will it inspire or educate someone, does it reflect your brand? All these things make up what a post should include. It needs to speak to your ideal audience, not your next door neighbour or family member. Don’t put up a post that has no meaning or relevance to your business, you can do this on your personal profiles, but stick to relevant content that your readers are going to want to hear.
Create eye-catching content
We’re not all brilliant graphic designers but there are many (free) tools out there that can help. If you’ve not yet discovered Canva, we suggest you take a look! The perfect space for you to create images to the right size, with the right feel, utilising templates, colours, fonts and more to speak to your audience. There are many pre-made templates to inspire you and if you simply don’t have an eye for design, you can use these as your own. There are also many royalty free stock image sites that you can make use of too. The image you choose for your social media posts are going to be the stopping point, or not, for your readers. If they like the image, they’ll stop to read what you have to say.
Use thought-provoking copy
Just like the image, your copy should make someone have a reaction. Whether you are trying to make them smile, laugh, cry or think, touching a reader’s emotion will create an impact. By understanding your audience and knowing what they are looking for, you’ll have a better understanding of what to put in your posts. Create emotion, empathy, use real-life illustration or examples – touch hearts and minds by what you write.
You don’t need to do this in every post but the way to create engagement is to tell your readers what you want them to do after reading your post. Do you want them to comment, to share, to click through to a website? Ask them to! In most cases you need to ask someone to go to the next step in order for them to do it. It’s not cheeky and don’t feel guilty about asking people to do things – use your social media in the best way possible to get people to know, like and trust you – if that’s by giving them something further to follow or read, that’s fine!
With everything you create online, be sure to keep it branded, relevant and inspirational. You want your content to stand out and you need people to engage, as that’s what social media is all about! The key to growing your business, seeing an increase in sales, building a following and creating a sustainable business is in the engagement. When you’ve established how to get people to interact and engage, you’re on the right path to seeing the rest fall into place.
If you’d like help with creating a strategy or social media marketing plan that will keep your audience coming back for more, we’d love to talk. We’re online marketing specialist who love to get social, love to get to know your business and want to help you create a successful, engaging brand online. Get in touch today!
In the meantime, why not download our social media checklist – don’t forget the basics to get you started. It’s FREE! 👇
We’ve all heard it said by someone; “What’s the point in social media marketing?”, you’ve probably even said it yourself at some point. But as a business owner there is absolutely point in making an effort to showcase your brand online through the power of the many social media platforms there are to hand.
Not every platform is going to be relevant or applicable to your business. Not everyone has time to spend creating fantastic eye-catching content to spread across social media. But the point of the matter is, it is a necessity in today’s digital world that a business needs to be online in order to be heard.
- But where do you start when it comes to online marketing?
- How do you create great posts, especially if design or creativity is not your strong point?
- When and where do you post and how do you manage it all?
- Why should you bother?
Lots of questions and all that have some great answers which we’ll cover in this post.
Here at KJP Creative we believe that you must have a passion and drive for your business in order to believe in it. There’s absolutely no point pursing a business venture if you don’t believe in it. And this is the same for your social media content, your online presence along with everything else that you do and say when you meet others. Following the outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic, many people turned to online resources to stay afloat and to keep their business going. And things are not going to stop here as the world heads back to normality – this has changed the way of business, this has created such an impact on the online world that you need to be in it and with it to be noticed.
We’ve said it before, but those who are visible and adding value through everything that has happened, will be the ones who are remembered when it stops. This is applicable to any pandemic, not just Coronavirus, it’s about standing out, creating a safe place for people to find out about you and providing value to every person that you come into contact with – both online and offline.
Where do you start?
You need to start with your audience. Our coaching courses dig deeper into this but we fully believe that in order to know where to start, what to say and who to say it to, you need to understand your audience and be confident that the content you produce is what is needed in a very noisy and busy advertising world.
Get to know and understand your audience. Research everything you can about their likes and dislikes, their needs and problems. What they want to hear or see. What would make them buy from a business? Put yourself in their shoes and think as they would – what would make you buy from you?
Along with this, there’s probably other brands that are doing exactly what you’re trying to do too – so use this, you don’t need to reinvent the wheel. As well as researching your audience, research your competitors. What works for them? What type of content do they produce? What are they saying, who are they reaching, what are they giving or providing? What works for them may work for you too, so take note and use what you can.
How do you create great social media content?
Not everyone is artistic or creative, we get that, so how can you produce great content if (you think) you’re not good at it?
There are a few ways to look at this question. First off, you can learn! There are plenty of free tools out there to help and that are great resources to help you get started. We absolutely love Canva and wouldn’t be without it. There’s a free version so you don’t need to pay out to get started and you can experiment and play with the variations in order to create some images and content that goes with your branding.
The most important tip we can give you in this is stay true to what your brand is about and use the inspirations inside of you to think of ideas.
What is your brand about? What’s your story? What are your beliefs or values?
These are the types of things you can be thinking of when you want to put a (for example) Facebook post together. Find an image that says what you’re thinking of, something that says exactly what you’d like to say if you didn’t have words. Then think about the wording that would go with your post, for the text on your chosen social platform. Your image and text should go hand in hand, not contradict each other and be inspirational or educational to your audience.
Even if you think you don’t have a creative bone in your body, you know what you like, you know your business better than anyone and you can use this to create content that is unique to you and your brand.
The second answer to this question is that you can outsource. We all have our strong and weak points and you may find after a few attempts of creating content that it really isn’t for you – that’s ok! You don’t have to be good at everything. And this is something that as a small business owner you can get het up about and struggle with. Stick to what you’re good at and let an expert take over this section of your business for you. You’ll see a much better return of investment by doing so, and you’ll be less stressed and relieved at the whole process.
Example: Talking to a hairdresser who was in a similar situation, who really wanted to be online and creating a fantastic social media presence – but she simply didn’t have the time or the energy to do it well and make it successful. She worked out that if she did one extra set of highlights (or whatever service it was!) a week – and for her it was doing what she loved and using her own skills – she could outsource her online marketing for the month. Result.
How much better is your business going to be if you’re filling the holes with the right sized pegs?
How do you manage it all?
This is a good question and social media or online marketing needs to have a strategy and a plan of action. This is fundamental to making it successful and doing your best to make it work well. Many people post content for the sake of it, or rush it at the end of the day when they realise that nothing has been posted that day. But what good is that to your audience if you’re not a) consistent or b) putting thought or value into what you’re providing?
Planning is key. Organisation is key. And that’s why we love our Social Media and Marketing Strategy Planner – it’s a wonderful resource to ensure you’re heading in the right direction, you’re making notes and building up a plan of action and you can see ahead to what’s coming and what needs to be done. Yes it takes time and dedication but as with anything, if you’re going to do something, you should do it well.
There are scheduling tools that you can use to manage your posts and to make it easier to create content ahead of time, the last think you want to do is be on your social media channels all day every day, you’d never get anything else done! That’s where a planner comes in which works with your business plan and marketing strategy. Everything comes together to form a smooth social media presence that will help your business be noticed, become loved and trusted and in turn, successful.
So why should you bother with social media marketing?
We hope that you want your business to grow, to flourish and to be loved. If you’re a small independent business, do you want people in your local community to hear about you and to use your products or services?
Did you start your business with the mindset that you’d like to see it bigger than just the little startup that you began with, or do you see it stagnate and fizzle out and die? Probably not!
You have a passion to see results. You have drive to be successful in your ventures. You want a successful business, something that you can be proud of, something that will pay the bills (and more) and something that you will get you known within your industry / sector and allow you to become an expert in your field – right?
Your social media presence will help you get there and achieve these things. Raising brand awareness is not always an easy task but with the help of social media, it’s lot easier than it used to be!
We hope that you have that passion and desire to want to succeed and realise that online marketing should be part of your business growth strategy in order to make that a possibility. If you’d like to find out more or talk to us about strategy and planning, we’d love to help. Get in touch and let’s have a conversation. Speak soon!
In the meantime why not download our “Social Media Checklist – don’t forget the basics” which hopefully will help you think about the basics of what social media entails and provide you with a checklist of what you can do. If you want to talk through anything, feel free to contact us, we’re here to help at the click of a button.
It’s no surprise that many businesses are facing hard times during the Coronavirus pandemic which the world is currently going through, and this is made worse by not being able to physically see people face to face and to promote a business in the normal way. However, we want you to know that there is a light to all of this when it comes to keeping your business alive, and ensuring that your brand is still in the forefront of people’s mind when they are looking for your services or products.
The key to this light is communication. Each business that is facing hardship at this time needs to dig deeper into their communication channels and to find a way to still be there for their audience and to provide as much value as they can.
Everyone is looking for solutions, everyone is searching for answers and needs to feel that they can find what they are looking for somewhere out there, probably online. And that’s where your business can thrive. That’s where you can be the best of what you are capable of and showcase a range of solutions to reach your audience. All you need to do is understand your audience, stand in their shoes and get to grips with what they are feeling, their pain points and what they are seeking – and provide solutions for them.
It’s not a chance to ‘get rich quick’ or to make other’s out of pocket, it is a chance to provide value and stability in a time of uncertainty.
How can you communicate efficiently and effectively in times of panic?
Utilise your social media channels
As more and more people are communicating through their social media channels, connecting with friends and family, searching for online solutions and generally spending more time online, here is your opportunity to reach them right where they are.
Where is your audience hanging out? Is it Facebook / Instagram / LinkedIn? People settle into a place that’s comfortable and calming for them. Personal social media is down to the individual to find a platform that works for them and therefore it may not be where you are used to being, but if you want to speak directly to your audience, it’s where you need to be.
We say this so many times, but the more value you give, the better a) you will feel, and b) the more your audience will trust, respect and like you. It’s about building relationships and getting to know your audience. People buy from trusted sources; from people they can see and understand. People engage with people they like to hear from, where they can relate and resonate with.
Emotion plays a big part in social media, being able to reach someone’s emotions will go a long way in gaining engagement and interaction on the content that you share. Thinking about how your audience will react to your content, can you make them laugh, smile, feel inspired or motivated? Social media is about getting social and communicating at a level your audience appreciates and reacts to – every audience is different but how can you best touch their emotions and what types of content can you create that will fit the box?
Create a Facebook or LinkedIn Group
Do you have a specific group of people that you could provide even more value to in a more personal or interactive way – that’s not necessarily given to your wider audience? This is where a private group can come in. Facebook and LinkedIn groups are the perfect safe place for people to ask more direct questions, to gain clarity and insight and to have a deeper relationship with a brand or business. This is where your personality and skills can shine through. Many people are part of social networking groups, so why not set up one for your business where you can provide the same level of substance as others?
Setting up a Facebook group is easy, and once you’re set up and ready to go, it’s time to invite some people to join! You can use your social channels to ask your audience to come and check out what’s new, you can personally invite friends (if it is relevant) to join and from there it’s about creating content that will speak directly into their lives, whether that be personal or business related, depending on what your business is about. Ensure that what you produce is relevant to your brand and what they signed up for, there’s no point in creating content for the sake of it, put thought and effort into everything, and show that you care about what they are going through and who they are.
Here at KJP Creative, we have a Facebook group aimed at helping women business owners build their brand online. It’s a group for encouragement, inspiration and motivation along with advice and tips on how to use online marketing to grow a business. For us, it’s on topic and in line with our brand and core values, it’s helping a specific group of people and providing value where they need it the most. Try to think about how you too can offer something that’s of worth for your audience, what would they want to see or hear and how can you reach them in a much deeper and direct way?
You’ve probably heard it said “the money is in the list!”, well, we’re not focusing on the money aspect in this post, but there is much to be said for keeping the communication going through email, especially with many people using email rather than face to face meetings during the pandemic.
Email marketing, when performed correctly, can be an extra arm to your business, giving you yet another stream to be able to provide content and value to your audience. Not everyone will read your emails, but it’s a good place to start if you want to provide more than just the standard social media posts. An email can give you opportunity to utilise a number of different avenues, including asking people what they want to hear from you, what would help them and providing a private place for special offers, tips and advice.
Email marketing is a way to keep your customers informed – what a great place to add a personal video or image about what’s going on or happening behind the scenes!
It’s also a place where you can push your online sales and guide people through your sales funnel. With face to face interaction not happening and shops and services on hold, this is your chance to showcase your services to the people that are already interested in your brand. A ready-made audience.
If you’ve not yet set up a mailing list, it’s not a hard thing to accomplish (we can help if you need it!). But jump over to Mailchimp or one of the other free email marketing platforms and set start an account today. Just as a Facebook group, you can promote your email list to your current audience, you can create posts to let people know how and where they can join and then once you have people signed up, ensure that you send out regular content to them. It doesn’t how regular you send your emails, as long as you stick to the schedule you set yourself. If you say you’re emailing weekly, do it! If weekly is too much, go for a monthly newsletter – and stick to it. Once people get used to seeing your content, they will look forward to receiving your emails and knowing what’s going on.
At the end of the day, your online marketing is the face of your company at this time. In a world where people are turning to online communication and solutions, your business needs to be where the people are. Use your social media and online marketing channels to reach your audience in the best and most effective way possible. Be there for them when they need you, even if they don’t know they need you and be a shining light in a confused and momentous time.
If you’d like a guiding hand in your social media or marketing strategy, feel free to give us a bell and let’s talk.
In the meantime, to ensure you’re not missing the basics with your social media marketing, why not check out our ‘Social Media Checklist – Don’t Forget the Basics’ – it’s FREE to download and our gift to you…
Running a business takes time, energy and passion. If you’re a small business owner or solopreneur, there’s many tasks that you will be managing yourself. So how do you make time for everything?
Planning and Organisation is key. They are the fundamental ingredients to smooth running and consistency for a small business and the same rule applies when it comes to social media marketing. Marketing on any level requires planning and strategy but when it comes to creating a plan of action and engaging content for an audience to interact with, and start to learn more about your business and values, organisation becomes paramount.
Introducing a social media scheduling tool
This is when scheduling tools are most valuable and essential. Organising social media content in advance and planning what content to use is the first step but by utilising a scheduling tool so you don’t need to think about it (or panic on the day) will ease the pressure 100%. Of course there is more to social media than just posting and forgetting about it, but getting everything planned will take a weight off your mind and enable you to focus on other parts of the business.
What social media scheduling tool is best?
This comes down to preference, it’s like choosing a supermarket. You take a look at what it offers, find the best deal for you and try it out.
To name a few:
They all have their good and bad points and all have their own benefits, but let’s focus on Hootsuite as this is a popular one for small business owners and for a smaller budget.
If you’re just starting out, Hootsuite offers a free version for up to 3 social profiles. This can give you a chance to try before you buy whilst giving you a feel for what it can do.
Once you’ve connected up your 3 profiles, i.e. Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, you are able to see a “stream” for each profile. Just as if you were in the programme itself. For example, in Twitter you can see your home feed, inbox, tweets you’ve posted and any @mentions about you or your business. There is even a search function so you can keep up to date with your social listening, follow certain hashtags or accounts and staying current with industry news.
You have the ability to see a calendar view of all your content, whether that be weekly or monthly, which can be extremely helpful if you want to look back through posts that you’ve previously done. You can even use the calendar view to select specific days to post, planning as you go with regard to your posting.
This is where it all comes together, scheduling each crafted post to its individual profile and seeing a sea of posts ready to go out to the world. The pressure it will take away from you will be amazing!
What content to post on social media
Obviously you need content to fill your social media calendar with and this will vary depending on your type of business and values but the key to scheduling is to map out the content before you go to post.
In our recent Business Focus and Social Media Strategy workshop we walked through creating a strategy for your marketing content. Break down what topics and ideas you have:
- What is your audience interested in?
- What value can you offer?
- Who are you speaking to?
- Industry news/advice
- Motivational posts
There are so many content ideas within just the above that will get you thinking about how you can serve your audience, get creative!… making sure you give value in everything you post.
If you venture into the paid version of Hootsuite you’ll gain access to analytics for your different profiles. This can help with targeting time, reaching the right people and seeing what’s working/and what’s not.
Having all your profiles in one place makes it much easier to stay on top of everything, including customer service. See messages all in one place when customers contact you or give positive or negative feedback. Jump straight into answering questions or replying to comments, and never fall behind in your customer service again!
When it comes to your social media marketing, organisation has got to be top priority. Plan, create, schedule >> reach your audience, grow your business.
However if it’s still too much to get your head around, we’d love to chat with you to create a plan of action that we can implement for you. Your success is our success. Get in touch today!
And if you’re happy to get started with your own social media marketing, download our free social media checklist – so you don’t forget the basics!
We’re well into January now, a new year and are you ready to grab it by the horns and get stuck into goals and targets for the year ahead?
There are many things that go through your mind as the year begins but planning and getting organised is key to ensuring that your year goes to plan. What do you need to do to get your business headed in the right direction and geared towards your core values, reaching the audience that have grown to love and adding value every step of the way?
Get started with the basics and make sure that your online presence is how it should be right from the outset. When people see you online, this is often the first impression they get of your business, of your brand, and what they see will have an impact on their first impression of you. Will they like what they see? Will they be able to relate to you? Are you offering value or solutions to their questions? Are you easily contactable or easy to find on social media?
What can you do to ensure that your online presence is ready?
Make sure that your website content is the very best that it can be. This is your shopfront and the place where people come when they want to purchase your services. If you walked into a shop and found spelling mistakes on signposts or offers that didn’t match what being shouted about, or the branding was wrong, you wouldn’t trust them. The same goes for your website. Everything that is on your site needs to shout ‘your brand’, it needs to speak your voice and portray the message that you speak about on your social channels. Try not to give mixed signals or conflicting advice.
Take a step back from your website and visit it as if you were a customer. Do you like what you see? Does it make sense? Do you have good SEO in there? If you search for your business name in Google, what appears? Would you trust and buy from your site?
Check all your copy, check grammar and spelling. Ask a friend to check also if it gives you peace of mind, a second pair of eyes is always a great idea!
Social media channels
Social media marketing is here to stay – fact. It’s not going anywhere and it’s only going to grow moving forward. A business needs to be using social media to market their business. By all means use other forms of advertising too if you are confident that the ROI is worth it, but social media needs to be your first choice.
Have you got social channels in place? Are you using them? Do you have a strategy in place to ensure that it’s all reaching towards goals and targets?
Make sure that all your social channels are branded and are linked to your website – make the customer journey as easy as possible to jump from one place to another. Customers are looking for answers and instant fixes – can they get that from your channels?
Also, the message that comes across from your social channels needs to be inviting and informative and consistent with the content on your website. If you’ve got offers coming up on your website – share them on social! Tell a story with your social channels, use them to show behind the scenes of your business and how everything comes together. Understand your customers and what they are looking for – and give them value on your social media.
Blog for business
If you don’t already have a blog on your website, now is the time to start. People are hungry for information. There is an influx of content available online and yes this does cause competition but it’s a way to really engage and reach your audience in a way that’s relevant to their needs. This is a chance to stand out from the crowd and offer more than your competitors. It’s the easiest way to keep fresh content flowing from your website and a way for search engines to know that you’re active and engaging. Be sure to incorporate SEO keywords into your content and posts. Do your own research: If you were searching for a particular topic, what keywords would you search for on Google? Use these keywords in your blog post and add them to titles and tags.
Marketing In Your Car – Listen Now!
You may not be great at writing, and as with anything, writing comes with practice. You may even find you enjoy it after a while! Set time aside on a weekly basis to write. In this new year, schedule time in your calendar specifically for this. It’s often a task that gets put on the back burner but it is so important to raise brand awareness and great for your business.
You can even outsource this task if you think it’s too much for you to commit to, just to ensure that it gets done.
As you start the year, you may have in your mind where you want your business to go but putting everything down into a business / marketing plan that you can action and measure results against will benefit you much more. This enables you to set goals that you know you have complete. This helps you when you hit a brick wall and are stuck on where to go next. It helps you stick to schedule and complete tasks that may otherwise be forgotten. Your marketing strategy needs to be a big part of this. Clearly mapping out a strategy and plan on where you want your business to be this time next year and how you’re going to achieve that within your marketing will give you direction and clarity. Plans can be adapted along the journey and goals tweaked or extended but direction is key. Schedule goal updates on a quarterly basis to align all that’s taken place and what’s next. Plan and map out your social media marketing along with any paid advertising or content creation that needs to take place.
If you need help with social media management, just ask!
Optimise your customer experience
The journey that your customer goes on when they’re interacting with your business needs to be smooth, exciting and helpful for them. They need to feel their worth and know that they’re getting value from you. If they feel they’re just another number, they’ll go elsewhere. Take time to create great customer service plans and procedures should you need them. This year make it about creating outstanding customer service and smart solutions that drive business values. Provide reliability being on hand to customer when they need to, responding to all enquiries in a timely manner. Social media is a great tool for this and gives instant access to any potential customer – make your impression count.
Build a community
When your brand is known, you’ll gain trust and loyalty. You can build an online community with your customers by engaging and encouraging them on a regular basis. Ensure that you’ve got a sign-up list on your website or social channels, so you have an email address to be able to get in touch with them. This is so important for growing your business, providing snippets of value at the simple drop of an email. Email marketing will grow your business – is that what you’re looking in 2019? Great content speaks volumes. It’s not just what they can see from your website or social, it’s about adding a little extra after they’ve experienced that.
Build a Facebook group where you can provide even more content and value than you already offer from your Facebook Page. This can be in the form of a closed group where people can come and ask questions that they may not want to do publicly, it can be a place where you can closer with your customers, engaging with them on a higher level providing expert knowledge and advice – all of which will set you apart from competition. If people like what they see and hear, they will recommend your business, and you’ll experience business growth.
This year, build community into your marketing plan and make it a goal to grow your business through community.
Stay up to date
Trends and marketing tactics develop and grow year on year. It’s important to stay up to date and keep in line with what is happening online. What was working 2 or 3 years ago may not be the best plan of action for 2019. It’s even more important for small businesses to stay up to date so they can stay in line with larger businesses who have more resources. Small businesses can grow too! And 2019 is your year to grow. Make sure you research. Perform social listening. Set yourself up for Google alerts. Listen to podcasts. Watch the trends on Twitter. Read, read, read. There is so much you can do to learn and understand what’s going in the digital world around us. Tap into this and use it with your targets for the year. Adapt your marketing strategies as trends change, social channels appear and tactics shift.
What are you going to this year to make your business grow and stand out from the crowd? Are you going to make 2019 your year for success and business growth? You may have been holding back in years’ past, you may have been focusing on other things, on growing yourself and ensuring that your mindset is right, you may have other commitments that are surrounding you.
Whatever situation you find yourself in, it’s time work out what you want for your business, to set your goals for how to achieve them and to give 100% to your business plan. Only you have the power to make it happen. Only you have the motivation to make the shift and put in the effort. If you’re ready to see results, you’re ready to stand up and been seen.
If you’re looking for help in social media marketing for the new year, we’d love to chat with you. Feel free to get in touch and let’s start a conversation.
You can also download our FREE social media awareness days calendar – to get you organised throughout 2020. Enjoy!