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In today’s world, a business is practically non-existent if it isn’t represented on social media. It is understandable that not every business owner is social media savvy. However, without engaging with an online audience, your business is a lot more likely to get looked over in favour of its competition.
What are some ways you can effectively use social media to your company’s advantage?
Engage with your audience.
Remember that using social media isn’t all about what you post. What other people post is important too. To maximize your engagement, be sure to find some time to like and comment on other posts. Keep in mind that each time you leave a comment, you strategically place a link to your account. As Christina Newberry of Hootsuite points out, the unique benefit of social media marketing for small business is that it allows you to talk directly to customers and followers.
“You can build relationships over time, rather than asking for a sale upfront,” she writes, “That said, you certainly can use social to get a sale upfront…More than 44% of internet users use social networks to research brands. Part of that discovery is getting to know who you are as a brand and what you stand for.”
Don’t get too promo-heavy.
In order to utilize social media to your company’s advantage, it’s vital that you don’t over promote. It turns off the majority of social media users. Remember the “social” part of social media. It’s important to be engaging. Your posts should include a mix of helpful tips, funny stories, interesting facts and other pieces of information that intrigues the average person. Ideally, your posts should be conversation starters.
“Promoting yourself is okay every once in a while,” says Lexie Lu of the U.K.’s BusinessWest, “Some marketers go by the one-in-seven rule, which says that for every one directly promotional post, six others should be content-based. In these other six posts, you could share articles, comment on current events or ask a question. You don’t have to entirely avoid mentioning your brand in these posts; just be careful not to sell too hard.”
Shout out your friends and followers.
There is probably no better way to endear yourself to your audience members than to publicly declare your appreciation of them. Don’t be shy to tag certain friends and followers in your posts. This can be especially beneficial if they are business owners. By shouting them out, you effectively offer some free word of mouth promotion. Don’t assume that the favour won’t be returned!
“Sharing your followers’ content on your social channels (and tagging them, of course), helps you establish relationships with some of your biggest fans,” reveals Newberry, “If a fan tags you in an Instagram Story, you’ll get a notification in your direct messages. Be sure to reshare—it’s an easy win-win.”
Do you need some help ramping up your social media marketing efforts?
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