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Why Should Freelancers Use Social Media?

Why Should Freelancers Use Social Media?

Marketing is important for anyone looking to promote their services and this is applicable to absolutely anyone; from those just starting a business, to freelancers, entrepreneurs to small or large organisations.

Many larger companies will have a marketing team where they can hire a social media manager to do the job however it’s not as easy for freelancers who are trying to make a name for their business, with just themselves to do the work.

As a freelancer you know your business better than anyone else and therefore can push your marketing in the direction that you know it will hit your audience but how do you do that well and effectively when time management can be a factor as well as understanding all the social channels in order to do a good job?

Embrace social media

Don’t think that just because you are a small fish in a big pond that social media is not important – it most certainly is. And for some freelancers it can be the main stream of marketing that brings in new clients and reaches out to even more people.

Whether you personally love or hate social media, as a freelancer you need to be using it to promote your services.

Embrace the social networks as if they were your best friends and find a channel that works well for you, and stick to it.

Here's why we think Freelancers should be using social media in their business

Which social network do you use?

This will totally depend on your type of business and who you are looking to attract. Before you do anything, you need to establish the basics.

  • Who is your ideal client?
  • Are you working B2C or B2B?
  • What do you want to achieve from social media?
  • Who is your competition and what are they doing?

By working on these basic questions, you can give yourself a basis to build your social media content around.

If you’re a B2B freelancer you will probably find that LinkedIn is a great place to discover clients. Check out our recent post on why LinkedIn is good for your business.

LinkedIn is a great place to network and build on your relationships, showcase your knowledge and expertise as well as getting your name known within the industry circles.

Facebook is good for brand awareness and building a community. Facebook is still the largest social network and one that is great for building a following. By creating a Facebook group and providing value through this to an audience that is interested in your services, you’ll build trust, reputation and loyal customers. If you’re not ready to create your own group, there are plenty that you can join and add your value to. Be sure to jump into conversations and give solutions to people’s problems. This way you become recognised as an expert and people will come to you when they need assistance. The way you manage this will determine if these people turn into paying clients.

Twitter is a place for opinions and news so this is a place to find your audience’s conversations and to offer solutions. You can search for #hashtags relating to your industry and follow trends that will lead back to your audience. Building a following on Twitter can be relatively easy if you’re prepared to put in the time to keep up the pace – but sharing your knowledge will definitely get you noticed.

Are you using social media for your freelance business?

If you’re love images and can showcase your portfolio or service through imagery, then Instagram or Pinterest will be the place for you. Instagram is rapidly growing and with 75 million people a day scrolling through their feeds, you have good reason to want to use this platform.

Instagram allows you to get creative so whatever you are doing, wherever you are, you can capture the moment and create content that will grab the attention of your audience. Motivate and inspire people, give them a reason to want to follow you and if they like and appreciate your creativity enough, they may even get in touch to work with you!

The same can be said for Pinterest, which has become an extremely effective search engine facility where people are searching for inspiration every day. Your images do not have to be perfect, and with Pinterest you can add text to tell your audience what you are offering. Just be super clear on what you’re offering and who your attracting and if you get the content right, people will discover you.

Should freelancers use social media to promote their services?

Pulling it all together

With all your social media efforts, there are few things that need to happen throughout all of it: engagement. The key ingredient to social media marketing is engagement. Without engagement, all your efforts, time and hard work will fall flat and will be for nothing. No one wants to think they are working for nothing, right!

With this in mind, all of your content needs to have a reason or a way for people to engage with you – on every single post or tweet. There should always be a call to action or a next step they can take. Even if you’re just asking for a ‘comment below’, the audience knows what to do next.

With so much content out there, it is so easy for a user to read and scroll past without a second look. But if you catch the eye of the audience and ask them to take action, they are inclined to do so.

In this way you build reputation, trust and expertise. People will recognise your name and your identity becomes your brand, you are building a name for your business which can grow and develop.

And when people engage with your content, be sure to engage back! Show that you are human, you have an opinion and you value theirs. Create relationships with your audience and provide value to them in every way possible.

Social media is a key part of a freelancers success and the more you do it and start to love one or two particular platforms, the more you will get to know your audience and love them too.

Don’t spread yourself too thin

This is one of the hardest things to stick to, there are many great social channels out there and sticking to one or two can be a hard discipline to get into the habit of but it’s much better to do a few extremely well than to be on all networks but do them all not-so-well. Your reputation is at stake with every post that you create. With every piece of content that you produce, it needs to be clear, to the point and be focused on your ideal audience. You can set up personal channels if you want to talk about things irrelevant to your freelancing business. Your business is your focus and yes you want to be ‘you’ but you also need to come across as professional and approachable. First impressions count when it comes to potential clients. Make that first impression good wherever they find your services.

Do you have a website?

Social media is great for promoting your services and shouting about what you can do, but do you have a landing page on where they can go to find you? This landing page or website is as important as your social media profiles. If someone finds you on Facebook and clicks a post to get in touch with you but is hit with an out of date, old website, they will move on to the next freelancer. Spend some quality time updating your website (or landing page) and ensure that it’s always up to date. If you change your prices or a service that you provide, update your website. Simple.

download your free copy of our 2019 social media planner

Time management

All the above should be workable if you manage your time well. As a freelancer, your time is most valuable as you only have one set of hands! (Unless you outsource your social media marketing of course!) But the fact is that you can only do what you physically have time to do. Planning and organising your time is important for any business owner, so the need to factor in your social media marketing is something that should be a part of that plan.

Social media should be fun and never a chore – planning ahead and being in front of your time is the best piece of advice we can offer and always know what’s coming up so there are no big surprises.

If you’d like help, we’d love to chat with you about how to go about putting a strategy and plan in place for your social media marketing and to get the most out of it for your business. Get in touch today!

 

How To Know What To Post On Social Media For Your Business

How To Know What To Post On Social Media For Your Business

What do you find is the hardest part of using social media for your business? 

Most business owners will find that the hardest part of social media marketing is coming up with new content on a regular basis.

This could come down to not having the time to post, not knowing what to post or how to attract your audience with posts.

Lingering on these points alone will procrastinate your social media marketing and will slow you down. It could have an impact on other parts of your business too, if you spend too much time concentrating on this one aspect, or even if you get too stressed trying to figure it out, you run out of steam to carry on with anything else!

Creating content is not easy and it does come with practice. It’s a never ending cycle machine that needs to be monitored and fed, and also it needs some love. Finding the passion in your social media goes a long way to making it successful. It’s the same as anything, when you enjoy something, it works.

Not sure what to post on your social media? What do you enjoy talking about - what makes you happy?

Should I just post ‘something’ to get content out there?

Many business owners fall into the trap of just posting ‘something’ so it looks like they’re on top of their social media. Anything is better than nothing, right?

Not necessarily. If you’re churning out content with no engagement or reactions, no new followers, no comments or shares – it’s not working. You are simply spending time creating content that has absolutely no impact on your business at all, wasting your precious time and causing you stress when you can’t get ‘something’ posted.

How do you know what to post on social media?

This is the part that you need to figure out – and this should only be a handful of things, preferably not the same content posted on every social platform out there. Once you’ve worked out what it is that works well, the rest will fall into place. It’s much better to do one or two things well and to see results from those actions, than to try and do lots of things not very well. One of the reasons we lose followers or people unsubscribe from our mailing list is that they are either bored with the content, or they feel that it’s not relevant or adding value to them. The key is in providing the value so the people are going to want to continue to listen and ask for more.

Therefore, to be able to post something well and make it relevant and with value, you must enjoy what you are posting about. When you don’t enjoy it, neither does your audience. The positive energy and the vibes that you give out from your content is an important factor in your social media marketing. You need to make your brand stand out from the crowd, make your content unique and by adding in your personality and spice you’ll give it an edge – the whole reason people choose to follow you rather than another business. what should you posting about on your social media?

What should I be posting about on social media?

When you’ve discovered what you’re enjoying and what makes you smile when you’re creating it (along with more and more people engaging with the content), that’s when you’ll know that you’ve found your sweet spot. Now it’s time to focus in on this and to make it the best it could be.

You’ve tried Facebook and managed to get a little engagement. Perhaps your friends and family still support your business page and like your posts, but the community isn’t growing. You post two or three times a day, spend ages creating beautiful images with captions. Share all the latest articles that you come across and even add in some of your blog posts… but still no engagement.

You jump over to Twitter and again share all the best news stories and retweet a few posts that you like the look of. Perhaps even follow a few more people in the hope that you get some love back. Tumbleweed… nothing.

So you head over to LinkedIn in a last attempt to get a little attention, perhaps you might get one like on a post and feel like you are still appreciated.

After all of this you are absolutely exhausted, completely overworked and have not achieved very much – sound right? So what have you done wrong? 

What do you post on social media when you haven't got a clue?

Niche down and specialise

You’ve not done anything wrong per-se but you’re not giving your business the chance it needs to dig deep and find its perfect clients. After all your posting and content creation, you need to work out which is the right platform and what type of content fills you with joy; you’ll know when both are right when the content you create gives you a buzz every time you create it and you just love to talk about it and share.

This may mean that you’ve got to niche right down, you may even think that this will cut out half your audience and you’ll lose people, but that’s ok. As when you do specialise in a particular area and have a focus on your ideal clients, not a general overhaul of everyone you can imagine in a ‘just in case’ mindset, then you’ll start speaking directly to the people you want to reach.

Being too general can have a negative result even though it can seem the best thing to do to reach as many people as possible. As a young business, a startup trying to build a business, you need all the positivity you can get – and nailing down to a smaller specific audience will be beneficial and help with the success. When those ideal people start to see that you are sharing a solution to their specific problem or scratching their itch, they’ll start to follow you and engage in what you have to say. When this shift happens, you’ll discover the people that want and need your services and they’ll begin to share your content and recommend you to their communities too.

When you dig deep down, you may only find one social platform that suits your audience. For example if you are a B2B, LinkedIn might be a great place to connect with other business owners and to build relationships and to show your expertise. This will build trust and a familiarity of your brand. And when they realise that your services will give them value, they’ll come to you. No more hard-selling, no more pushing and knocking on doors. When you build a reputation for being an expert and offering value to those who need it, your business will grow organically.

What about the other social platforms?

We’re not saying that you have to dump every other social network that you’ve ever used and totally disappear from these sites. Customers are still searching for you on their favourite platform and having a presence is still a good idea. But why not spend 90% of your time focused on the platform that works for your business and 10% keeping up appearances on the rest? Join the KJP Community and learn how to grow your brand awareness and business online using social media marketing

Using a scheduling or management tool for your social platforms will help with time management and give you a freedom to spend more time on the platform that you enjoy being on and communicating with the people that are more likely to become clients. If you realise that Pinterest or Instagram are your platforms of choice, we recommend Tailwind – you can try for free too!

Where do you go from here?

It’s all about using a working marketing strategy that you can work alongside and adapt as time goes on. Setting goals and targets, understanding your business objectives and knowing what you want to achieve. When you can answer these questions, finding the platform and creating the content will be a lot easier.

Don’t forget that we’re not all good at everything – we all have our own creativity inside but not everyone knows how to express that into social media marketing. If you’re looking for guidance and a creative spirit to come alongside your business and help you tighten the reins, we’d love to chat with you. Get in touch to start the conversation.

Why not start off with our social media checklist, giving you an idea of what you can achieve on a daily, weekly and monthly basis before you get started? Organisation is a good habit to get into! Best thing is, it’s free! Download nowsocial media checklist - don't forget the basics - from KJP Creative, social media management

 

10 Top Benefits Of Social Media For Business

10 Top Benefits Of Social Media For Business

What are the benefits of using social media for business? What impact can it have on your brand and is it worth the effort long term?

These may be questions that you ask yourself over and over again, but consider this – there are 2.77 billion social media users around the globe, that’s not something to take lightly. The people on social media are engaging with brands and businesses, they are following celebrities or influencers and they are making their purchase decisions right from the social platforms.

If your business is not on social media, you could be missing out on huge potential and the chance to engage and build relationships with many customers in an extremely cost-efficient way.

Let’s take a look at the benefits to using social media for business.

1) Brand Awareness

We all want to see our brand grow and become established. As a business owner you need to reach your customers where they are and to be where they hang out. With the large global number of people on social media, your audience is going to be on there somewhere. The more you post, the more active you are, the more times you push your business out into the social media world – the more chance there is of people seeing and hearing about you. When someone discovers and likes your brand, they will tell others about you, and the awareness and journey of your business begins.

Are you using social media for business? Here are our top 10 benefits why you should be

2) Become a Thought Leader

Whatever niche you are in, there are people searching the web for answers. The more you assert yourself and provide valuable content, the more content there will be available to be found by people looking for solutions. Social media allows your brand to grow and become established within an industry niche. It’s a way to build trust and relationships, it’s a way to engage with consumers and for them to know that you’re a ‘go to’ place for information.

If you’re looking to establish your brand in this way, LinkedIn is a great place to start. Network with people relevant to your industry. Provide answers in comments that can solve issues or problems. Give people a reason to trust and like you and you’ll soon become recognised as a thought leader if you are consistent and reliable in your approach.

3) Increase website traffic

When you create killer content, you want it to be seen by as many people as possible, otherwise what’s the point, right? Once you’ve created your content, you can use your social channels to promote it. Blog post, article, press release, offer, new team member – whatever it is that you want to shout about on your website, you can use social media to do it more effectively.

Not only do you need to create the killer content on your website, you need to write just as well on your social channels in order for people to want to click through to your site. And once they’re there, you want people to stay there for a little while. Although the incoming links and shares from your social accounts aren’t as great as authentic links from high-quality sites, they are still important for SEO purposes and help to rank your site on the search engines. And you want to rank high to be found!

The best way to think about using the two platforms together is by using both your website and your social media accounts to direct traffic from one to the other. Great content on website, promote it on social media. Great post on social media will drive a consumer to your website.

4) Generate and increase leads

What’s the point of getting a consumer to click from social media through to your website? The ultimate goal is usually to gain sales. The more leads (people) you have that discover your site, the more chance of them being interested in what you have to say along with liking your brand. If they like your brand, there is a higher chance of them purchasing from you.

Not only thinking about the sales aspect of your business though, the exercise of generating leads is extremely important. It creates a database of people that are interested in your brand. It’s a resource that you can tap into when you need to. Most of the social media networks provide paid advertising ways of providing lead generation – and always worth a try if you have the budget to do so.

5) Faster and easier communication

Communicating via social media is great for responding to customers in a quicker and more effective manner. People are after ‘instant’ and that applies to questions they may have about your brand, about your product, or anything… if they can’t get an answer, it’s just as easy for them to go to the next business on the list. Many businesses miss out on opportunities when they either do not have a social media presence, or they have it and are not using it effectively.

Now it’s even easier to contact a business, file a complaint or provide a positive feedback experience. As a business you have a responsibility to be where your audience is and communicating with them on a level which they feel comfortable on.

How do you grow your business online? Are you using social media for business? Here are our top 10 benefits why you should be

6) Great customer service experience

As with the above point, having a faster and easier communication line going, customers can have a better journey with your business. The user experience is an important factor to get right. Lose the customer on the first hurdle and it could be hard to get them back.

By using social media for business, you are providing a way for them to communicate with you at any step of their journey with you. When they first hear about you, when they want to ask about your services, or if they have something to discuss – providing great customer service goes a long way. And if a person is happy with your services, they are more likely to recommend you to a friend. Loyalty and trust are built on relationship, use your social media as your customer service help desk.

7) Create engagement

Social media allows you to engage directly with your customers or followers. It’s a safe place for them to interact with your brand and to provide a two-way street between you and them. Unlike offline communications where often it can be one-sided, social media provides a way to have a dialogue or to engagement with you as a business.

This allows them to get to know you, what your business is about and if you can provide them with value. If they engage and interact, if they share your posts or like and respond to comments, you’re creating people who respect your brand. The more engagement that happens, the more changes there are of building on that relationship and in turn, building your business.

Are you using social media for business? Here are our top 10 benefits why you should be

8) Learn about your customers

The more a person engages with you, the more information you can obtain about them. Social media generates a lot of information about a person, the longer they use the channels and the more they interact with posts and brands.

By utilising the analytics functions on all the platforms, you can create a picture of your audience and angle your content directly towards what they are looking for. If you tailor your content to what the audience wants, you’re providing them with value. When a customer sees value, they start to trust you.

Encourage your followers to engage in your posts, ask them questions to gain responses and insight, learn more and more about their needs – and then use the data to create a perfect environment for them to take a step forward if they want to.

9) Keep on top of competition

You’re not the only brand out there doing what you do! Even if you think you are, there’s probably more competition than you realise. Social media gives great opportunity to keep an eye on the competition and to see what they are doing. If you can see that what they are doing works, use their ideas. Note, we didn’t say ‘copy’ their ideas! But if something has been tried and tested and it works, there’s no reason to reinvent the wheel.

It’s also good to know what people are saying about your competition. If you find someone complaining about a service they have receive or a product they have bought, there is your opportunity to swoop in and let them know that you’re there to help.

Social listening is great for hearing about new product launches and offers and generally anything that relates to your brand. If you can stay up to date with the competition, you can stay ahead of the game.

Join the KJP Community and learn how to grow your brand awareness and business online using social media marketing

10) Tell your brand story

Using social media is perfect to tell about your brand’s story or journey. It’s a place where you can be completely open and honest, share the heart of your business and its core values and mission and be transparent to your audience.

Every business has a story. Every brand has a journey. Social media gives you a platform to share that story and to make your brand unique and stand out from the crowd above all the other competition that is out there.

You can use different social platforms to tell the story, you can use one form of medium to tell the lot, but be consistent in whatever you choose and allow you potential customers to get to know and love who you are and what you stand for.

You can also share the stories of people who buy your products or services, again building on brand awareness, customer service and engagement to create a fuller picture of what your business is about.

People love a story, what’s your story?

KJP Creative is an online marketing agency, specialising in social media management and there to help business of all sizes grow their online presence. If you’re looking for guidance in creating a social media strategy for your business or help managing your social media, we’d love to speak with you. Get in touch and let’s talk!

You can also download our social media checklist to ensure you don’t miss the basics when it comes to your social media marketing. A daily, weekly and monthly checklist to help you grow your business using social media.

social media checklist - don't forget the basics - from KJP Creative, social media management

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What Are The Differences Between The Big Social Media Platforms?

What Are The Differences Between The Big Social Media Platforms?

The world of social media is forever changing, and forever will be! It evolves as people find new ways of connecting and communicating with others and as technology develops.

There are new platforms popping up all the time, so where do you begin? Do you spread yourself thin and try to be active on all social platforms or do you choose just one? And how can you keep up with the social channels as a business looking to reach out to an audience and build brand awareness?

First off, if you’ve got a marketing strategy, and more specifically, a social media strategy to adhere to, you’ll know your end game and the targets you’re trying to reach. But if you’re a small business, or are just starting out you may not be that far along the line as yet. That’s ok (although we do suggest creating a marketing strategy), you need to first understand your audience and where they are most likely to ‘hang out’, then establish what you are looking to achieve when you’ve grabbed their attention, and then use the social media networks that are most relevant to them.

If you think about a group of people, say your friends or your colleagues, you would act or speak differently to your best friends than you would with the person you meet at the coffee machine. You’d also have a different rapport with your friends than your clients. The relationships are all different and need to be nurtured in a different way.

Many people think of all social networks being equal – but they’re not. They all have their own specific purposes and all have the job to do in the ways of networking. Understanding their purposes and what to use each channel for will give you a better understanding of how to use them for your businesses and which social network will work best to engage with your customers.

So let’s look at the different social media channels – what are they about and what are they mostly used for?

Facebook - what is the main difference in social media networks?

Facebook

Whether you like Facebook or not, your customers are most likely to be on there in some shape or form. It is the biggest social media network with Facebook had 2.32 billion monthly active users.

Not only do people use it for personal use, it is now becoming an advertising platform for businesses across all industries and sectors.

For business use, Facebook is a place to share company news, updates on offers or promotions along with interspersed industry news. People will come to your Facebook page to find out more about your business and your company culture and values.

With Facebook being the biggest social networks, it is important to have a presence on the platform. Many people looking for a service or product will search through to find a Facebook page as it’s a place that’s familiar, that feels safe and allows a person to take a peek with no pressure.

Always keep your audience in mind with all content that you post. Are the posts fitting with your business, do they match your culture, are they things that your audience will want to see or hear?

Once you’ve established a small audience, you’ll get to know what kind of content they prefer to see as engagement rates will go up and you’ll get more response to your posts. Use Facebook as a way to link your customers to your business and to show the reasons why they should trust your brand and buy from you.

Twitter - what is the main difference in social media networks?

Twitter

Twitter is extremely fast-paced and on the go but it is a great way to establish an audience. It’s an easy and simple platform to use and with 326 million active monthly users, it’s not one to miss! The microblogging platform provides a user to give a status or update in 240 characters and is a sea of information. The platform can be used for news updates, company updates, quotes or inspiration but with the limited number of characters allowed, it’s vital your copy is inviting, enticing and relevant to ensure that people click through to the place you want them to.

Twitter is great for polls, to gauge audience reactions or opinions and to raise brand awareness in bite size snippets. You can post using polls, images, gifs, videos or plain links and as long as you can get your information into the small tweet box, you’re ready to go!

Be sure to respond to comments or new followers, thanking new followers is a great way to build relationships, perhaps asking them a question in return to get to know them a little better. When you know your audience, you can service their needs and add value.

Join the KJP Community and learn how to grow your brand awareness and business online using social media marketing

Pinterest

Often Pinterest is a platform that is missed off the social media strategy but we have found that it is an extremely important network to utilise for business. It’s all about eye catching visuals that entice users to click through. The visuals need to show knowledge or expertise, they need to have something to offer and be offering something that another person is looking for.

Content is king, it’s the way that you get people to click through from Pinterest to your website. Therefore you need to ensure that your content is spot on target with what your audience is looking for. Provide the visuals and content that people are searching for and the people will find you.

A great take-away for Pinterest is to offer a freebie in order to get people to click through to your site. Once they’re on your site, they need to know that you can help with their problem but if your website doesn’t match your Pinterest content, you’ll lose the customer.

The pins on your Pinterest account can all be re-purposed from the content already on your website, if you have a blog, create a multiple number of different images to link back to the blog posts.

To make Pinterest work properly, you need to be posting on a very regular basis which is where scheduling tools come in handy. We recommend Tailwind which can be accessed for free to start with and can be free for forever if you want to keep it at the basic level. Definitely a tool that necessary to make Pinterest work properly.

Don’t forget to actually engage with followers as well on Pinterest, it can be easy to get overwhelmed with posting, but the engagement is also a big part of the marketing strategy in order to grow your business.

Instagram - what's the difference between the social media networks?

Instagram

Instagram is another visual platform and if you love photography, real life images or grabbing the moment, Instagram is for you.

These images should be to a high resolution and to a good standard, as Instagram is all about an account being beautiful and attractive. Although it does help, Instagram is more about telling the story behind your brand and letting followers know what you are about and what makes your business tick. You are able to engage with local people, relevant hashtags and people interested in your niche. There’s a whole range of ways to interact with brands on Instagram and now you can even shop directly from the platform!

In order to use the shopable feature on Instagram, you’ll need to have an active shop in Facebook and your account will need to be set up as a business account.

Individual posts do not allow links in the copy so it’s a good idea to make sure your website link or preferred link is in your bio, you can then ask your audience to connect with you via your bio link in each post. You can always change that link to different landing pages if you’re running a campaign or you’d like to direct your followers to somewhere different – this is changeable at all times.

What is the difference between the main social media platforms and how can you use them to grow your business?

LinkedIn

If you’re a B2B business, LinkedIn is a great place to be. It’s known as the professional social network and it’s a lot easier to build professional relationships and gain new B2B clients from this channel.

LinkedIn has 590 million users and 260 million monthly active users. It performs better when it comes to lead generation conversions at a rate of 277% which is 3 times higher than Twitter (.69%) and Facebook (.77%). 80% of B2B leads come through LinkedIn.

The type of content on LinkedIn is usually business or company related. If you want to share about what’s happening in your business, the new employees, the company culture, that you’re hiring, milestones and such like. All this is great for company pages.

To build the engagement on these company page posts, it’s a good idea for business owners and employees to share the updates on their personal profile. If you’re a business with many employees, encourage them to share and comment on company posts.

When it comes to using social media for your business, there are many choices and opportunities, so you need to find what works for your clients. Don’t waste time on platforms that don’t work – understand and know your audience and hang out where they are.

If you’d like help in putting together a social media strategy or you simply haven’t got the time to invest and would prefer to pass the task onto an expert, we’d love to help. Get in touch for a free consultation.

Don’t forget you can download our FREE social media planner 2019 to help plan out each month in one swift document!

Download your own social media marketing calendar for 2019. Get organised!

 

6 Tips To Help Grow Your Small Business Online

6 Tips To Help Grow Your Small Business Online

As a brand we hope that you are using social media in some form or another, for those that are still to discover a social media presence – we need to talk!

But for many brands, social media is the best form of marketing and advertising that their company can use in order to gain the attention of their audience.

Building a social media presence will not create a magical income stream straight away and as with anything it needs to be built upon and content carefully crafted and planned out. Businesses that hope for miracles when they post sporadically often give up at the first hurdle when they don’t see results straight away. However, building a marketing strategy that can be followed in order to achieve certain goals and increase sales, raise brand awareness and build a solid foundation for customers to get engaged with WILL get a business noticed.

As a business, you need structure and a plan – you need a marketing strategy.

6 tips to grow your small business online - using a marketing strategy and social media

Start with a SMART marketing goal

Decide what’s important to you, what goals you want to achieve and then how you’re going to achieve them.

An example of a good SMART goal for social media marketing would be something like “Increase our Pinterest response rate by 50% by the end of the first quarter.”

Specific: “We’ve specifically identified the social channel (Pinterest) and a metric (response rate).”
Measurable: “The response rate can be measured from Pinterest for Business analytics dashboard.”
Achievable: “It’s a realistic goal that with focus and creativity, can be achieved.”
Relevant: “Our goal will have an impact on our overall social media presence, making it very relevant.”
Time-bound: “The goal has to be met by the end of the first quarter.”

Now, Pinterest as an example is a very positive social channel that when used correctly can drive traffic to a website in the hundreds! We love Pinterest but choosing a platform that works in line with your business is essential for the strategy to work and be productive.

By making SMART goals for each step will give it purpose and a relevancy, aligning it with your overall core values. Does your goal fit with your business plan? Does it reach out to the audiences that you want to speak to?

recipes to grow your business

Grow your audience

Now you’ve got the strategy and plan on what you want to achieve, it’s time to put that into practice and grow your audience using social media.

We may have chosen Pinterest as our example, but many brands will start off in Facebook as their chosen platform of choice, so thinking about using Facebook, what can you do to see results? The main point if anything to take away today, is that you need to ‘show up’ every single day and you need to show your audience that you actually care about them. Use your business page, create a members groups, reach out to individuals through your personal profile – as long as it’s in line with your SMART goals, go for it!

By using great content, experience, expert knowledge and advice all coupled together, it will help to build your audience. And you want to be right in front of them, to be there when they need you and ready to answer and engage at the most crucial times.

6 tips to grow your small business online - brainstorm with visions and dreams

Strategy comes from vision

The idea behind putting a marketing strategy in place is so that you can achieve the goals that you set out to achieve when you started your business, these goals come from visions and dreams that you may have had for many years. Lay out all your visions, decipher your dreams into segments and create a brainstorm of everything that is important to you. You’ll be surprised at everything that comes out from a simple exercise like this! Start with one point, one idea and the rest will flow.

What lifestyle do you want to be living? Will the achievement of your dreams have an impact on your lifestyle? What financial goals do you want to achieve? Be clear on all that you dream of – it will make it so much easier to create a plan if you know what you want from it.

Ensure that all your plans align with your core values and your personal vision.

Pricing

Some people lack the confidence that they are worth what they want to charge in their business. They see the experts charging high ticket prices but when it comes to their own self-belief, can often hit barriers that do not allow them to charge their worth.

Remember that you are an expert in your niche – that’s why you’re doing what you’re doing.

From your goals you will already be aware of what you need to achieve financially throughout the year. This figure then needs to be broken down in segments of the services that you offer.

How many XX services do you need to sell to achieve £XX’s? You can have different levels of pricing / packages depending on who you work with and the level of service or support you offer but create a pricing structure that works with your goals.

You may not think that this will directly grow your business, but by knowing what you need to charge and sticking to those prices, you will gain confidence and assurance in what you are doing. When someone asks you “How much do you charge for XX?”, you will be able to answer straight back with a price, rather than lacking in confidence to quote the price you know it should be. Confidence shines through in all areas of your business and being clear on pricing is a great place to start.

6 tips to grow your small business online - speak to your audience

Speak directly to your audience

Do you know that what you’re offering is hitting the pain points of your audience? Is it actually going to serve a purpose and create solutions? That needs to be a deciding factor on how you market your business and which direction you take it.

Everyone needs something, and researching your product or services will determine the people that are looking for you – the people that you need to reach.

Using a simple keyword tool will help you determine what your audience is searching for. When you understand specifics, then you speak directly to them and relieve their pain.

Gain customer feedback – are you approaching your idea from the right angle? Are you dealing with a problem that is real?

Even tapping into your competitors social feeds can give you insight into what works and what people are seeking.

For example, someone may be searching the internet for ways to keep up to date with social media planning. Now for us here we could dive straight into connecting with the people who are looking for this, build a relationship with them and then offer our social media planner as a solution.

People won’t buy from the first introduction but by creating a relationship with them and giving them a reason to trust you and your brand, it becomes a whole different story. Recommendations and word of mouth advertising is valuable and still extremely powerful. Learn to love and nurture your audience and provide value in every conversation and people will learn to love you back, and in turn recommend your services.

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Positioning

One of the most important aspects of your marketing is the positioning of your brand in the market. It needs to be built into the marketing strategy not used as an add on at the end. So how do you position yourself in a busy and competitive online society?

Focus on one or two things – not multiples. It’s better to do one thing well and be successful than try to do everything and do them badly.

We’ve all heard this before but it’s true in marketing also. It’s true when it comes to your social media marketing, it’s true in your services, it’s true for everything that your business offers. Focus on what you can do well and then position yourself in the market as an expert in that niche.Domains from $0.88

Be more user friendly. A customer wants a good journey when they interact with your brand and for everything to be one click away. Searching for a button to be able to contact you, or not knowing how to find your social channels, or when they do, not gaining a response… it’s all comes down to a customer’s experience and how easy it is to do business with you. Make this a pleasant experience and one that’s easy to travel down and you’ll find more people will engage. Make everything clear and transparent, even if it looks over simplified to you. Not everyone knows the business as well as you and it’s better to spell everything out in plain sight and with clickable actions for each part of the journey.

At the end of the day, you have to love what you’re doing. You have to be able to inspire yourself to do well and to succeed. When you have a passion inside of you that just wants to see results, all the above will fall into place.

If you’re new to business and have not put a marketing strategy together before, we’re here to help and your success is our success! We want to see you grow your small business online, we want to help you implement strategies and tactics to see results.

Use our contact form to get in touch and let’s see your business booming this year!

You can also connect with us on our Facebook Page and get to know us a little better too – we hope that your customer experience with KJP Creative is a good one!

Look forward to hearing from you.

Grab your copy of our 2019 social media planner – and get organised with your social media marketing…

Download your own social media marketing calendar for 2019. Get organised!

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