These days, social media can play an incredibly vital role in the make or break of your small business. Both small and large enterprises can benefit from the use of social media, as it can connect companies to potential customers and further business opportunities. Social media has become such an important part of many people’s day-to-day lives, and we are constantly connected to others through our mobile phones.
In this modern-day and age, if your business is not optimising on the use of social media, then you are likely missing out on a large number of potential customers/clients. So, we spoke to the team over at Audience, our social media specialists, to get their thoughts on how you can increase your company’s reach by setting up social media and using the five following steps.
If you’re looking to improve your online presence by setting up a new company website, then please take a look at our guide on taking your business online.
The number of different social media channels is ever-growing, and it is important to stay up to date with the latest trends and pick the most suitable options for your business.
It is not necessary to maintain a presence on every social media platform, and at first it may well be worth only developing your presence on one platform. However, it is highly recommended to eventually be present on at least four different platforms, to reach a sufficient number of clients/customers.
In general, we would most recommend using the four following social media platforms:
- Facebook – This is the largest platform and has over 2 billion monthly users. Due to the huge number of users, small businesses should definitely consider maintaining a presence on this platform. Facebook also has a fantastic ads management service, where businesses can specifically target certain groups with paid ads. If you’re looking for more information on how to run Facebook ads, then check out our guide here.
- Instagram – This is a growing platform, which is continuing to increase in popularity with the younger generations. Instagram has around 800 million monthly users and is particularly effective for businesses with a more visual appeal. Due to this, however, it may not be suitable for every business, as it is entirely photo-based.
- Twitter – This platform has around 328 million monthly users and is the perfect place to answer customer queries and questions. It is also a great platform to follow others in your industry and keep an eye on what they are up to.
- LinkedIn – This site has a considerable number of members, standing at around 467 million users, and is a fantastic place to network and connect with other people in your industry. It can also be a brilliant place to find new members of staff to hire.
2. Setting Up Your Social Media
After deciding which social media platforms to use, there are a few further steps to follow. First of all, it would be ideal to set up all the different social media accounts with the same email address, to try and avoid any confusion with setting up accounts and forgetting passwords. Using your company logo for the profile picture, is also a great idea, as it means customers will easily be able to find and identify your social media accounts.
On the same note, keeping usernames the same across the different social media channels will keep all your social media accounts in line with the business, and again means your business will be easier to find.
The final step is creating a short description for the bio section of your business profile. This is your opportunity to attract customers and describe what the business has to offer. Adding hashtags to this short description could be a great way to drive traffic to your social media channels, whilst adding the website URL will give customers direct access to your site.
3. Promoting Your Social Media
Once you have completed the initial setup phase, it is then time to start promoting your accounts and gain some new followers. Initially, asking friends and family for their support on your business accounts is a great way to start out. If your business is already up and running, then make sure to let your customers know about your new social media accounts and encourage them to like and share your posts. Adding social media widgets to the bottom of your company website and promoting accounts on business cards and flyers are great ways to attract new followers. Finally, you could also ask your customers what type of content they would like to see, which will help you to create relevant and engaging content for your audience.
4. Investing Time
Although posting on social media does not require a large budget, you will need to invest a substantial amount of time into growing your company’s social media presence. Producing quality and engaging content for your audience is very important.
As your social media is a representation of your brand, your content must reflect that. The aim should be to produce engaging social media content, which your audience can easily communicate with. It’s also a great idea to reply to any comments left on posts.
There are a few different ways in which businesses can try and reduce the workload involved with the management of social media accounts. Using websites, like Hootsuite, can be a great way to create, upload and schedule content all in one place.
You could also consider getting some help, by offering internships and getting students on board with the process. Interns can be a fantastic addition to a company, as they are usually young people, who have a great working knowledge of social media and tend to be cheaper than hiring a full-time employee.
If you’re interested in other low-cost ways to market your small business, then take a look at a guide we wrote on this topic.
5. Continue Persevering
Growing your social media presence can take time and you will need to develop an engaging content strategy to really make the most out of your platforms. To see results, you will need to invest time and energy. More and more businesses are beginning to recognise the huge potential for growth that social media offers.
Every day millions and millions of people use social media as it has become so ingrained in our daily lives. Businesses need to start tapping into this and optimising on the huge opportunity that social media provides. For more information on online marketing, check our beginners’ guide on this topic.
So, that’s our guide on how to manage social media for a small business. We hope you’ve found it helpful! Need some help building your social presence? Reach out to Audience at email@example.com for some help and advice.
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