Social media is a vital part of digital marketing. But there are definitely right ways and wrong ways to harness social media for your small business. Here are some things I wish every client knew when they’re planning their brand’s social media strategies.
1.) Consistency Above All
You have to post consistently for social media to work. It’s not enough to have an account, or to create a profile page, or to have posted a bunch of photos when you did that big job back in 2019.
You have to post every week until your page is deactivated. Otherwise you’re just advertising your business’s own inactivity.
2.) Likes Aren’t Everything
It’s great to get likes on your business’s posts! It means people saw what you posted.
But…what did you post to get those likes? Did it actually have anything to do with your business?
Sometimes a good post won’t perform well. And sometimes you’ll get a lot of likes and you don’t know why. So don’t go chasing a single viral post. And especially don’t focus on what other people post on their personal social media accounts—the memes, baby videos and constantly re-shared content for the sake of content. That’s not relevant to how you do business.
3.) Brand Before Bloopers
See above. This isn’t just about scoring likes. You need to consider your brand and brand voice for every post.
When people see something your brand has posted on social media, it’s exactly the same as seeing an advertisement for your business.
So write your posts the way you want to carry your brand. If you wouldn’t hang it on the wall in your lobby, then don’t put it on your social media.
4.) Don’t Shoot Your Ads In the Foot
If you choose to do paid advertising on social media—and it’s definitely a great idea in certain situations—then make sure you coordinate your posts accordingly. That is, don’t contradict your information or undercut your paid posts with more appealing offers on the content you post for free.
5. ) Social Media Platform Matters
Different social media platforms have different formats and often invite different types of users for different types of content. When you’re creating content, you should have a clear idea in your head of what platform it’s going to be posted to—and who’s going to see it.
6.) Post Time Matters
Yes, you need to schedule your posts for times when your audience—that is, your customers and potential customers—will be online.
Market research and social media analytics can tell you about the best days and times to post.
Oh yeah, did you know that there’s market research and social media analytics that you should be following?
7.) Use Your Social Media Analytics
Just as we can with your website, we can track all kinds of metrics for your social media account—not just the ones that are public (like number of followers and likes on each post). By keeping track of your analytics on a regular basis (like new followers, engagement rate, and post reach) you can see what posts are doing well on a consistent basis.
You can also see how your social media presence is improving (or isn’t) over a month-over-month and year-over-year period. And that kind of long-term success is what we want to see.
Which brings me to my last point.
8.) Patience is Required
So you got 300 likes on your post this morning. Guess what: By tonight no one will care.
Social media is a long game. It’s never about any one post. It’s about consistent posting, at least several times a week, every single week.
Read that again: Every. Single. Week.
So when you create your business’s social media account and commit to posting consistent, brand-oriented content, then the hard part is over. Now we just have to stick with it.