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How to Use Social Media Marketing for Your Small Business

As of 2019, roughly three out of four adults use at least one of the many social media platforms available today. With that level of popularity and widespread use, it only makes sense to incorporate social media into your small business marketing strategy. It is an effective way to reach a variety of new markets, increase sales and brand awareness, engage with existing customers, and find new customers.

To get started, research what kind of social media marketing similar companies are using in their marketing strategy. Decide who your audience is, and what your realistic goals are. You can research which social media platforms are the best choice for your needs and industry and initially start with one. Remember that in terms of users, Facebook has around 2.5 billion users, which is far more than its biggest competitors including Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, Snapchat, and Pinterest. So pick one, get set up, and get started. You should also create a social media calendar and use it to stay on track.

Try to build relationships with your audience

Engagement is the key to building your audience, relationships, brand awareness, trust, and eventually sales. You want to be authentic and share what you find interesting. In other words, be yourself. Write as you speak in a natural tone. Keep your content relevant, and do not post just to have something out there. Make sure the content you share is something that you find interesting, sometimes humorous, and always relevant in some way.

One of the biggest parts of engaging is responding and being part of the conversation. When people comment on your post, respond and create engagement. You can even go to their pages or communities and engage there. This is all part of creating a community, which is what you want to grow your audience.

How often should I post?

Sometimes business owners or marketing strategists struggle with how often to post. If you post too infrequently, viewers will stop visiting your social media content. And if you post too often, they might just skip over it out of annoyance. There are several schools of thought on how often to post on different sites, but here is a common range of the suggested frequencies for posting on the top social media platforms:

  • Facebook – 1x minimum (recommended) per day, maximum of 2x per day, at least 3x per week
  • Twitter – 1x minimum per day, recommended 15x per day, no more than 30x per day
  • Pinterest – 3x minimum per day, recommended 3x per day, no more than 30x per day
  • Instagram – 1x minimum per day, recommended 1-2x per day, no more than 3x per day
  • LinkedIn – 1x minimum per day, recommended 2x per week

Be Consistent with your posting

It is important to engage and be a part of the conversation consistently. This will build relationships, and you will gain your audience’s trust. Try to pay attention to the times that your posts get the most engagement, so you can post at the most strategic time of the day.

Quality Is Better Than Quantity

What you post is better than how often you post. A few good quality posts will outweigh 20 insignificant junk posts on any day. Readers are not interested in content that is poorly written or irrelevant to your site. So be sure to post only content that you believe is high-quality and interesting.

Include Visuals with your Posts

As human beings, our most significant sense is our sight. People love visuals! A short video will grab someone’s attention more than anything. A surprising or sweet photo will get a lot of attention. If you can put your product in some visuals, visuals are an effective way to showcase your product. There are many royalty-free photo websites available for quality photos to use in your social media marketing, with a good one being Pixabay.

Other Social Media Tips for Businesses

Be yourself, don’t dominate the conversation or try to sell your product in every engagement. Try to be helpful offering advice and suggestions when you think it is appropriate. Engage with others and ask questions, and they’ll respond by asking you questions. This will make them feel more comfortable and likely to engage. You can also ask your audience to refer you to others.

Use a Social Media Dashboard

A social media dashboard will help you manage and enhance your social media by having tools to plan, create, and schedule your social media content to be posted. You can plan out a whole week and a small amount of time and be assured that the posts will happen on time. You’ll still have to monitor your posts and engage, but you won’t have to remember to post something at a specific time four days from now. HootSuite is a wildly popular and effective media dashboard that has a free option and is easy to use.