When your business has an online presence, social media management is a full-time around-the-clock job. For a small business, social media can be a double-edged sword. It can be enjoyable to interact with your customers on a daily basis online, but it can also be incredibly daunting to keep up with social media while you’re running your own business.
If you’re creating a website and want to grow stronger customer loyalty, social media is a great avenue in which to do so. With social media, you can foster brand awareness, expand your audience/client base, and also build your online presence into having a personality.
Which Social Media Platform Should You Use?
There are many social media platforms today that are available, and which ones you should use all depends on what your business is about and how you want to connect to your customers.
If you could only put your business on one social media platform, Facebook should be it. It is one of the easiest ways to get in touch with your customers and it is one of the quickest ways to share news, sales, and photos. When someone likes your business page, they become a follower to your page and your posts will appear on their news feed. With Facebook, your follower can choose to “like” your post or even “share” it with their followers. One of the great things with Facebook is that it will show you how many people have viewed your post, and you can easily promote your posts with Facebook’s advertising system.
Do you have to promote with Facebook’s advertising? Not at all. With good-looking graphics or a particularly valuable text post, you can reach a lot of people without spending advertising money. Here is a post I made for Tri Outer Banks Sports for their Memorial Day sale. Although Tri OBX Sports currently has 261 likes (thus 261 followers), this particular post was viewed by 519 people—nearly twice the number of followers!
Tweet tweet, the little blue bird lets you post a message (up to 140 characters), a link, or a photo to your Twitter feed. Followers can reply or retweet, which posts the tweet on their Twitter feed. It’s also possible for people to send your tweet to someone via e-mail, and anyone can embed your tweet onto their website (with included links to your Twitter account). This is great for sharing particularly witty banter or to spread valuable info about your company, but it’s very important to “groom” what you say on Twitter. Tweets that are offensive or in bad taste could land you on the bad side of Twitter users (or on the local news!), so having someone manage your business’s online personality carefully is a great business choice.
If you have a business that benefits from photography, such as a restaurant, bakery, boutique, or even homemade crafts, then Pinterest is the perfect way to engage your customers visually. You can post images of your products (with price tags even) and include a link to your website or product page with every pin that you post on the site. If you find something on the site that you think would interest your customers, you can repin it to one of your Pinterest boards.
On Pinterest, it’s a good idea to post a variety of content and not all of it has to be yours. People won’t follow you if all your pins are of your products; you should pin/repin infographics, tips, and photos that you think would interest your audience. If you don’t have a camera but you still want to be on Pinterest, all is not lost! A great graphic designer (like me!) can help you create infographics and photos that will get your followers repinning.
There is also Tumblr, Vine, Google+ (which is great for SEO), and many more social media platforms that you can use to reach your customers, but these 3 are the biggest ones that offer the most value in reaching your customers directly. Interested in having me take care of your social media management? Please contact me!