Social media is free to use. Today every business owner has access to an unprecedented amount of free digital marketing tools. Other than the fact that social media management and branding can be time consuming, there are very few reasons why not to have a business presence on every social media outlet.
Take advantage of social media to build your company brand, community, advertise special offers, connect with potential business partners and create sales leads. Not to mention social media platforms are unreal for researching your competition and keeping up to date on industry trends, news, and technology advancements. Creating and maintaining an engaging social media presence is (almost) mandatory and certainly expected for small business owners in every part of the world.
Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, linkedIn and Google+ are the primary social media accounts that are simple to set up and should be created as soon as possible for your business. Create a new email such as “YourBusinessMarketing@YourBusiness.com” and use that email only for creating and managing all the social media accounts. This will keep your primary and personal inboxes from being overloaded with notifications and messages.
Be creative. There are thousands of social media posts, pictures, memes, jokes and advertisements bombarding users every day. Stay true to your company image and brand. Remember, your services are unique and now you have a platform to show the world why.
Encourage your employees to tag and engage with the company social media accounts. Start a company contest to see who can take (or create) the most hilarious office Instagram photo. Give your followers incentives to keep liking and engaging with your feeds such as free company swag giveaways and participating in Live Twitter Chats and Follow Friday campaigns. If you do not know the social media lingo, just Google it! Social media will explain social media for you!
Respond to direct messages and spend time following, liking, reposting and engaging with your online community. You never know who is at the other end of a social media message. It could be your next big investor or your biggest sale yet. The online community is a real community and reflects the physical society we live in. Retweet the local news headline every so often and exciting events happening in your business community. Follow, like and repost from other local businesses, even if they are your direct competition. This will garner respect and expose your business brand to all the people who currently do business with your competitors.
Do not over post! Once a day, or every two days can be plenty to start. Every hour is overkill. If you are going to be managing the social media accounts yourself, dedicate an hour a day and do not get caught up thinking you have to sit there hitting ‘Like’ all night. It can be overwhelming to maintain multiple social media accounts, let alone one. Hiring a social media manager is beneficial when you are ready. Always have your business contact information and website viewable, including your virtual office address and phone number. Social media can be a chaotic space to maneuver, but once you get into the groove, your business will thank you.