The Social Media Marketing 101 Guide for Business Owners

By now you know that social media isn’t going anywhere, in fact the number of marketers who say Facebook is “critical” or “important” to their business has increased 83% in just 2 years. So its important, but is it right for your business? If so how do you know where to start, what platforms to join, how often to post and if its working?

More and more business owners are hiring social media marketers after realizing its too much work to take on alone. Not every business can afford to hire someone and even those that do should know the basics, so we have created this simple guide to give you an understanding of how to (and how not to) use social media for your business.

There’s A Reason Everyones at This Party

So do you need to be involved in social media just because it seems like everyone else is doing it? Posting on Facebook, taking photos on instagram, tweeting out to the world and blogging away everyday? In a nutshell, the answer is yes. Social Media is a great outlet for reaching out to potential consumers, connecting with current customers and learning about your target market. It’s also a great way to spread brand awareness while boosting SEO and driving traffic to your website. Often where businesses lose sight of the value of social media marketing is not in seeing its potential, but rather in understanding how to pick their platforms and create a strategy that shows them the value of their investment.

Know the Value of Your Time and Your Voice

Its sometimes cringeworthy to hear the amount of time businesses spend on their social media marketing. Time however, does not equal money. In fact the truth in most cases is that your time is worth more than the return you get from social media marketing. Is that because social marketing doesn’t have potential for high ROI? No, simply put its because the amount of time you spend posting to every platform is a waste if your audience isn’t there listening. The goal is not to be everywhere, but rather to be where your customers are and where you will be active. If you don’t think you will keep up with more than Facebook, don’t create a Twitter account, Youtube and Blog. No presence is better than a fake one and consumers can tell when you don’t genuinely care and are just trying to speak at them instead of to them. Pick the networks that make sense for your business and for your own interests and you will be much more successful than spreading yourself too thin.

Whats the Point in Your Posts?

Before you start posting random pictures, jokes and quotes, think about the strategy behind your work. The point is not just to be seen but to be creating a community that helps spread word and funnel traffic back to your website and business. Decide what your goal is first. Are you trying to raise awareness or generate leads? Maybe you need more volunteers or donations for your non-profit. No matter the goal, knowing it before you start will allow you to create a strategy and content that has meaning in achieving an end result that can be measured.

The Definition of Insanity

The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result. Without a way to measure your results and understand the success of your efforts, thats exactly what you will be doing. Choose measurements that fit with your goal and the tactics you planned to use for your social media posts. If you’re raising awareness this could be the level of engagement on your Facebook page, for donations it might be the number of referrals to your website or a conversion set up in Google Analytics. Having defined measurable results allows you to continue to fine tune your strategy and further to grow your success.

 

If you focus on these core areas and create a strong social marketing strategy its possible for every business no matter their size to succeed in social media marketing. Of course we’re always here to help if you need us, just give us a call, email, Tweet, Facebook message, etc!