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.
There’s no denying that the current climate has encouraged business owners to use online marketing more and jump on the social media channels in order to stay up to date with customers. And if you’ve been one for holding back and not wanting to be online, are you able to keep up with the other businesses who are online?
The way forward is digital. The way for brands to reach out is through digital and online marketing. Social media has been and is going to continue to play a big part in business growth, providing stability to consumers and giving value at every opportunity. How can you embrace online marketing as a business owner?
Why is it important to have an online presence now?
What’s the first thing you do when you need to buy something, seek advice, research a product? You go online. You jump onto Google (or your favourite search engine) and type in the relevant words you’re looking for and results appear. Bingo!
Your customers and potential customers are doing the exact same thing when it comes to looking for your product or service. They are looking for “xxx near me” or “xyz in my area”. If you’re not online, you do not even stand a chance of being in line for that customer.
You need to be in it to win it!
Your competition is online, even if you are not.
This is the same for anything, for something to happen, you need to put yourself in the right place to start with. Give your business a head start and place it somewhere where it can be seen.
Build reputation and trust online
A key reason for being online, is to build trust, loyalty and showcase expertise where it’s needed. You can be there to help solve problems, give insight or advice, sharing your knowledge with people around you and in return building a great reputation for being a business that cares about others.
Being able to offer an outstanding customer service is also part of the package. How much quicker can you respond to a query or concern online. Giving people a place to find you, contact you and speak to you at the touch of a button.
Word of mouth marketing
We’ve spoken to a few business owners recently who still do not have an online presence (hence the reason for this post!), or they have ‘something’ out there but are not sure on how to use it effectively. Word of mouth is great and we’re not denying the power that it can have as a marketing tool but there is so much more potential out there when you make your business available. How big if your word of mouth circle? There are limits to word of mouth. How much more impact could be gained from your word of mouth customers to give you a review online and to recommend you via social media channels that can be seen by hundreds, if not thousands of other potential customers!
Where to start with online marketing
This can be a good question and very valid for anyone not used to being exposed to the open doors of all things digital.
For small business owners, you may have an email contact for your current clients. Why not ask them if they mind being put onto a mailing list? Your first point of call could be to send out a regular newsletter of either things that have been happening / recent projects etc, or to provide offers and latest information. You email list is extremely valuable. The bigger list you can build, the more people you can potentially speak to. It’s far quicker to send out a weekly or monthly newsletter, than to ring round a whole client base asking if they need anything. (be sure to follow GDPR protocols and get the permission of the email holder first)
Google My Business
For the people who are searching for local businesses or services, Google My Business is a great free resource that any business owner can utilise very easily. Simply search Google My Business in your search engine and follow the steps to get set up.
When you search for a business online, you will often be presented with a right hand column of information about that business. It will include website and contact details, opening hours, business information and much more. This can include client reviews or photos too. A perfect opportunity to give an insight into a business, and it’s free!
Facebook Business Page
Depending on what type of business you have, the next step could be setting up a Facebook Business page. This is also very simple to do, just make sure you have a personal profile set up first in order to get started.
Again, depending on your business, how many people are surfing Facebook and could potentially come across your business or service? How many of your current customers are on Facebook and would give you a recommendation or review? Facebook is still the most used social media platform worldwide and gives massive potential to reaching out to a wider audience. If you do not have a website, a Facebook Page could be the first impression a person gets of your business. Creating content around recent projects, live or up to date information, posting behind the scenes images and telling the story behind the brand… all these things make up positive influences towards building a business and growing your audience.
Facebook might not be the place for you, other social media channels might be relevant to your audience – how do you know which channel to choose? Research your audience, find out where they are spending their time, where they are most likely to be interested in seeing your presence and engage with you, and build a presence on that platform. Check out our post on What’s the difference between the social media platforms for more information.
Brand awareness is important however you decide create it, in order to keep a business alive, relevant and up to date.
Having an online presence in this digital age offers cheap and affordable marketing, an easy way to stay in tune and in touch with customers and raise a brand profile in the process.
With careful planning, goal setting and strategy, online marketing is a necessity to keep up with the competition and to create a growing and thriving business.
If you’re just starting out online or with social media marketing, always create a plan of action and know what you’re looking to achieve through being online. If you’d like to talk through strategy and marketing plans, we’d love to chat with you. Get in touch today and let’s start a conversation.
In the meantime, if you’d like to go it alone and would like a check list to ensure that you don’t miss the basics, why not download our FREE social media checklist to get started. Embrace social media, embrace the digital space and allow your business to have an impact!
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.
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.
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.
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.
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!
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.
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?
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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 2020 social media awareness days calendar – and get organised with your social media marketing…
If you’re a small business, you probably have a small marketing department, (if it’s not just you on your own trying to fill all the roles yourself) and it can be rather confusing or overwhelming at times. Not only does it require time and effort, but it can be frustrating if you’re not seeing results or growing your online presence.
Even though it can be a frustrating, it is a necessity in today’s digital world and the need for your business to be out there and seen is ever more important.
Many businesses are seeing a shift away from the conventional way of marketing and offline material and heading towards a variety of online marketing means. This gives way to much competition and the need to promote your brand as best as you can. Social media is the main marketing tool for most businesses and brands are seeing great results from well-managed marketing strategies and plans.
If you’re a small business trying to catch up with the larger organisations, you’re not alone and there are many things you can do to give your online marketing the best outcome possible, if you follow the best tips of how to get going on social media.
Build a commendable reputation
This isn’t as difficult as it sounds. Learning to connect with the RIGHT people will help your business get noticed in a better light, rather than just connecting with anyone for the sake of it. This starts with brand awareness. And this is best done by creating an online presence that represents your whole brand and who you are both online and offline. This powers down from every little thing you use to market your business, from your logo and tagline to your visuals, social media posts, blog posts and website. The design and feel must match your persona and core values.
If you’re not good at the design side for your business, don’t be afraid to outsource this to someone that it. Having a logo designed professionally or your social media profile started with professionalism will set the standard of what your brand stands for and that you mean business.
Be where your audience is
When we mention that you need to connect with the RIGHT people, that means to be where your audience is, and to focus on their needs and not a generalised version. Who are your ideal clients? Which social platform can they be found mostly on and can you reach out to them? What solutions are they looking for?
If you generalise in your marketing, you’ll find things very wishy-washy and hard to build a solid business. If you focus down and discover your niche and the audience within that, even though the amount of people you are reaching is probably a smaller percentage, they will be more dedicated to your cause and open to what you have to say.
Don’t spread too thin
The worst thing you can do when running a small business (or big one, in fact!) is to spread yourself too thin. Everything has its place and everything has its priority. Marketing should be high in those priorities but there are other things too that have a place in the to-do list. Therefore working out the best place to spend your time on social media or online that will benefit your business, is where you need to market. It can come with some trial and error and yes that can take a bit of time, but establishing the best place for social media marketing rather than splashing posts all over the place that have no relevance will be better in the long run.
You could put the same post up across all your social channels and fill a slot for that day, but does that speak to your audience or does it show laziness and not much thought process? Of course if it’s something that is relevant for all channels then that is fine, but be sure to tweak your posts to engage with the audience on that platform, along with creating images that fit correctly. It looks unprofessional for the same text and image size to be slapped on all platforms.
We suggest thinking about brand awareness, relationship building / networking, value, sales. Which social platform gives you better opportunity to reach your target audience in these categories? This may be Facebook, it may be Instagram, it may be LinkedIn – or it could be a combination of a couple of social channels. But if you’re managing this yourself, try not to spread yourself too thin by doing all of them at once. Not only will you burnout, your marketing efforts will be less effective and you’ll miss out on potential opportunities trying to keep up with it all. Establish a solid presence on one platform, then move up to two if you feel you need to, and gradually build from there. If you’re listening to your audience correctly, you’ll know where they are and where you need to be focusing your marketing.
Follow your plan
As with anything, it’s good to start with a plan – and to stick to it! When you started your business, (hopefully) you put together a business strategy/plan to build your targets and objectives into. This is the same for your marketing. You need a social media marketing strategy to keep focused and on track to ensure that you’re meeting goals and heading in the right direction. When you fall away from plans, you lose sight of what you’re actually doing. It can be very easy to digress or go off on a tangent, but if you have a marketing plan to bring you back in line, you’ll be ok!
Another reason for following a plan is that you are able to physically see when something does not work. This is a good thing! It can help you be more productive and efficient by allowing you to tailor your social strategy to what does work! All your ideas and thought can go into the brainstorming part of the plan and be incorporated as the plan progresses. Always be open to trying something new, if you don’t take risks, you’ll find yourself in the same place years down the line.
Be engaging – get social
Social media is all about being social and engaging with your audience. You need to really relate and get to the heart of what your followers are looking for and speak their language! Understand them with as much research as possible and start engaging with them in the places that they love and in the way that they communicate. This is where your ideal social platform comes into play – you need to be engaging where your audience is.
Facebook’s algorithm likes engagement. If you create a post and no one engages, it will not push it onto other people news feeds. However, if you create something that is really engaging and people start to comment or interact, Facebook will see this as a ‘good’ post and will show it to more people’s news feeds. Facebook favours friends over pages and businesses, so it can be worth asking your friends to like your posts to get some interaction started.
The key is to ask questions or create a post that engages the user and for them to want to comment or share. An eye-catching image with a question in the status above can grab the attention of your audience and boost your marketing efforts.
Many large businesses can get carried away with the sales that they actually forget to thank people and be personable. This is your chance to stand out from the crows and appreciate everyone that engages. Even if you just like their comments or give a quick reply, they are aware that you’ve taken the time to read what they have written and it makes them feel appreciated.
Social media is not all about selling. In fact selling should only be about 20% of your content, the rest should be made up of other types of content to add value to your audience.
If people see ‘sell, sell, sell’, they are going to get bored very quickly. They will know that you’re not really interested in what they want, just about what you want to get. Therefore use your social channels to give value, as we mentioned before, and build relationships with the followers you have. They will notice!
Have a clear goal
The most important aspect to your online marketing as a small business owner, is to ensure you have a clear goal in mind. Having a goal gives you direction. Direction gives you a path. And following that path allows you to reach success.
However you manage your business is down to personal preference but always have your goals in mind in everything that you do.
Here at KJP Creative we work with small and medium sized businesses to provide online marketing services in the form of ‘virtual assistance’. You don’t need to hire a marketing assistant to be in the office with you throughout the week – just pay for the service you need. By working with specialists in social media, you can have peace of mind that you’re in good hands and keeping up with latest trends and requirements. Give your business a boost and get serious about your social media marketing – it’s not an add-on to your business, it is the future of your business.
If you’d like to talk about your marketing strategy or need advice on how to manage as a small business, please get in touch, we’d love to chat with you.