6 tips for using social media for
your small business

Using Social MediaSocial media platforms are used by almost everyone. It’s estimated that 77% of Americans have a social media profile. That’s a pretty significant reach. The right marketing plan can help you harness these platforms, so you can grow your small business.
 
Don’t be thrown off by the word ‘social.’ These platforms have all the making of a cost-effective marketing tool. Use these tips to help make the most of your business’s social media presence. 

  1. Create engaging content – In social media, it is all about the content. Create original, engaging content so that more people will want to read/view and share your posts. The more shares you get, the larger your reach will be. Pay attention to the format of each platform. A long blog post won’t have the same impact on Instagram and Twitter but may be perfect for LinkedIn.
  1. Know your market – Make sure you understand your potential customer so that you can create appropriately attractive content. While a slew of followers may be great, if they have no use for your product you aren’t really building the business. You are better off with a core following of viable targets.

Pro hint: The algorithms on these sites make the type of follower you have more important than the quantity. Facebook’s algorithm analyzes the users who like your page and targets your posts to users with similar traits. This means that correctly targeting your clientele will be more valuable than chasing the numbers above all else.
 
  1. Try multiple platforms – Don’t limit yourself to just one or two platforms. Make sure to target all the major social media sites to get the widest reach. Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and Instagram all have different benefits and users. If you aren’t comfortable with any of these sites it might be time to do some research. Poke around a bit to see how other companies are making the most of each platform.
  1. Encourage a dialogue – One of the best aspects of social media is that it can humanize your brand for potential customers. Cultivating a personality online can help people relate to your company on a personal level. Don’t be afraid to engage with customers as long as you maintain a professional voice throughout the conversation. Build a following by communicating with users and encouraging active dialog.
  1. Stay on brand – Create posts that are relevant to your business. Sometimes these posts will be popular, but at other times they may not. That’s ok. You aren’t looking for friends, you are trying to establish yourself as a subject matter expert and reputable business. Avoid creating content with the express purpose of increasing likes. That means staying on brand, even when it means forgoing the popular post.
  1. Keep it up! – The term ‘cultivate’ is frequently used to describe social media marketing. It’s an apt description. It’s important to maintain your social media presence to keep building your following. Once you establish a pace, it’s important to maintain it if you want to keep reaping the benefits for your business.

It doesn’t matter if you are a social media novice or pro, with just a bit of practice you can be on your way to tapping this powerful marketing network. 
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