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Social Media Tips for Small Business Owners

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You’ve set up a Facebook page and started a Twitter feed. You write a post every now and then, and occasionally share someone else’s relevant content. You monitor your sites and respond to any activity, when you’re aware of it. That's enough social media engagement for most small businesses... right?

As it turns out, not so much. Social media is rapidly becoming the center of the marketing focus for the 28 million small businesses around the country. A recent study shows that 81 percent of North American small businesses utilize social media to drive business. Here are some helpful tips for using social media to help your small business.

Tip #1: Small and Selective

When you start using social media to promote your business, the options can seem overwhelming. With so many platforms to choose from, many small business owners feel like they must have a presence on all of them. Unfortunately, this approach often spreads your impact too thin, resulting in spotty, inconsistent content spread out across too many platforms.

Instead, start small and be selective: consider your target audience demographics. What platforms does this audience use? For instance, if you’re a B2B (business-to-business) company, you might want to start with LinkedIn. If you’re a B2C (business-to-customer) company, you may want to start on Facebook. No matter which platforms you choose, start small and focus on your target audience.

Tip #2: Always Provide Value

What would you rather see on your own social media feed: Lots of posts that you’re not really interested in, or just a few posts that really catch your eye, pique your interest and allow you to learn something new? If you’re like most of us, the latter option likely appeals more. Keep this in mind when creating your social media posts.

Always choose quality over quantity. When you provide value to your social media audience, they’ll appreciate your posts, thus building brand loyalty. When posting original and curated content, ask yourself what value it provides to your audience; as a rule of thumb, go light on selling and heavy on helpfulness.

Tip #3: Automate, Automate, Automate

Creating and maintaining a social media calendar may seem like a challenge. Luckily, there are many automation tools available to help you. Social media management platforms allow you to coordinate all your accounts, create a calendar, and schedule posts, all from one place. Building your content calendar well in advance — about a month in advance is optimal — frees you up to focus on day-to-day business without social media hanging over your head.

Tip #4: Don't Reinvent the Wheel

Don’t be afraid to re-purpose content. If you had a popular post, shared curated content that sparked engagement, or tweeted content that generated re-tweets, jump on that momentum and restart the conversation. After all, you already know that it works! You can add new content, reorganize and re-title your post, and use it as a starting point to generate more buzz.

By focusing on quality over quantity, targeting your audience and using automation tools, you can create a successful and effective social media marketing campaign for your small business.


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