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How to get the most out of social media for your small business

by Chloe Baird

Why do small businesses need social media marketing?

Social media for small business owners can be a powerful marketing tool. This isn’t news to anyone. But what most small business owners struggle with is utilising social media effectively.

You know that social media can help you connect with new and existing customers. You know it can help build your brand’s reputation. You know it can be used to generate leads and convert sales. You know all of this. So why isn’t social media working for you? How should your small business be using social media effectively?

Social media marketing is such an important part of any small business’s marketing strategy. If you’re struggling to understand how to use social media marketing, or if you’re unsure where to start, read on for our tips on getting the most out of social media for your small business.

What’s the best way to market your small business on social media?

Top 3 tips on how to maximise social media for your small business

1. Decide which social media platform is right for you

It’s a common enough query: What is the best social media platform for my business? The thing is, there might not be just one answer.

Deciding on the right platform (or platforms) might seem a little daunting – after all, there’s so many out there! But once you’ve done your research on your target audience (who are they, where do they live, what are their buying habits?), it will make it much easier to decide what the right social media channels are for you.

According to Civic Web Media, Facebook is the most popular social media platform for Aussies in 2020, with around 16 million unique monthly users. It’s followed by YouTube (15 million), Instagram (9 million), SnapChat (6.4 million), and LinkedIn (5.5 million).

But what apps are your customers using?

A survey from Roy Morgan in 2019 found that Facebook was universally popular across different generations, but that YouTube was proving to be more popular than Facebook for Gen Z. Whereas Instagram (maybe unsurprisingly) was more popular with Gen Z and Millennials than it was with Gen X.

With this knowledge in mind, what apps are your customers most likely to be using?

2. Create a social media marketing strategy for your business

Running your own small business is no small feat. It can be hugely fun and exciting, but it can also be exhausting and stressful. You might feel like you don’t have time to come up with a social media marketing strategy. Or you might think that if you just start posting something then you’ll naturally attract followers.

The truth is, if you don’t have time to make a serious social media marketing strategy, you’re going to need to make time. And the chances of you going viral with a random video are practically nil.

So, where do you start, and how do you market your small business on social media?

A social media marketing strategy is about achieving exposure with your target audience. It’s important to have one in place because you need to create a targeted, structured plan when it comes to connecting with your customers. Your posts will be much more successful if you understand why you’re posting, where you’re posting, who you’re trying to engage and what you’re selling. Backing all this up with research and data is also important to help your marketing strategy gain maximum exposure.

And if you’re not exactly sure what goes into a social media marketing strategy, that’s ok! Check out our blog: What is a social media marketing strategy?

A solid social media marketing plan can make all the difference.

3. Build your small business’ social media presence

Now that you’ve decided on the appropriate platforms to use and have developed a strong social media strategy, it’s time to start posting!

What are the key rules when posting content to try and engage your audience?

  1. Use engaging imagery/videos so people will stop to have a look, like and comment and maybe even share.
  2. Make sure its valuable to your audience – remember, your audience don’t want to feel like they’re being sold to! They want something that gives them something.
  3. Keep it relevant to your audience
  4. Stay true to your brand image and be authentic, because nothing will turn your audience off if they feel like you’re being disingenuous.
  5. Create a story your customers can follow and believe in so they remain engaged with your brand.
  6. Post content regularly and maintain a constant presence so you’re always at the front of your customers’ minds.
  7. DO engage with your audience directly and have fun with them! Your audience will enjoy being involved!
  8. DON’T get into heated arguments with people online ­and always make sure you deal with criticism in a positive way.

Ready to take your social media marketing to the next level?

Open Colleges recently partnered with Social Media College to bring you four unique short courses, all designed to help you master social media. Whether you’re a small business owner, an aspiring influencer, or a marketing professional, these short courses have been designed to teach you relevant, must-know skills and knowledge.

Are you ready to take the next step and up your social media game? Find out more about our exciting Social Media online courses by clicking on the above links.

18 Responses

  1. Daniel says:

    Very nice article to understand the importance of social media marketing and its advantages for small business like me.
    As you mentioned, I should start now to make a time for social media on regular basis.
    I will definitely plan social media marketing strategy for my cleaning business and will update regularly.
    Thank you once again.

  2. Mellisa Ben says:

    Social media has become the backbone for businesses especially during when we are facing the pandemic. Recently I have implemented some new social strategies for my online boutique and they are performing great for me. Facebook and Instagram are the best performing social platforms for my business. I am also planning to introduce digital business cards. Looking for your suggestions on this!

  3. RAJ says:

    Really informative, I like this kind of helpful post. Thanks for sharing!
    Keep up the good work.

  4. I believe there are many more pleasurable opportunities ahead for individuals that looked at your Social media marketing site.

  5. Earl Meyer says:

    Very nice article to understand the importance of social media marketing and its advantages
    for small business like me I will definitely plan social media marketing strategy for my
    cleaning business and will update regularly.
    Thank you once again.

  6. George Ford says:

    We believe by sharing our expertise and knowledge, we can reduce the number of unnecessary failures due to inappropriate model, unsuccessful marketing and lack of professional advice. Thank you for sharing.

  7. Aman says:

    Thanks for sharing these awesome social media tips.

    I am a big fan of social media even though most people spend their valuable time on social media.

  8. Earl Meyer says:

    Thank you for sharing this. I have been posting on social media put i have not really seen much traffic from social media. But after reading your post, i think i have learnt some things i didn’t know before. Thank you

  9. soikot says:

    Thanks for posting such a wonderful social media marketing.

  10. jewel rana says:

    This Social media marketing Site List really helping. Thanks For Providing Rich Social media marketing Site List.

  11. Josh says:

    Great article! I found it very informative and it was interesting learning the different strategies for social media marketing.

  12. Hey this article is very good. I understand how the importance of social media marketing in future, as you said in this article we have to active or post in social media marketing with consistency

  13. Claine Tony says:

    I was looking for this info for my mission. The article above really explains everything in detail, the article is very interesting and effective. Thank you so much and good luck for the upcoming articles.

  14. Phew That article is very insightful.I do understand that social media possess major challenges, but most of the people just think it is a scroll and fun job.What goes into making the posts successful is often overlooked.

  15. Dipanshu says:

    Small business those work in specific area SMM is very useful, exactly if going to maintain Social Media need time, strategy. To handle all the strategy we need to learn about all the aspects and if those don’t want to so they should hire a marketing expert. Nowadays most of the freelancers we can hire for our business. Thanks to share this article, valuable for beginners.

  16. Keep your videos short and to the point–according to Wistia, psychologists say that the average human attention span for an online video is about 60 seconds.
    Include humor–in the age of the golden meme; it’s hard to grab “the internet’s” attention without using a bit of humor (even if it’s self-deprecating).
    Use the art of storytelling to stand out from the white noise of commercial video. Tap into your audience’s emotions by creating a video that tells a thoughtful story.
    Approach your product from a different angle by focusing on a theme [or your story] rather than the sales-led reasons why for selling your product.
    Make the first three seconds irresistible! The opening of your video is what keeps your audience around for the next 45-60 seconds–make it count.
    Make sure your video is optimized for mobile, as that’s where most of your views will come from.
    Always include a call-to-action at the end of your video so that you have a measurable result of your views.

  17. Husna says:

    Social media is doubtlessly playing a major role in connecting small businesses with their target audience, and it is also pocket-friendly. The only hurdle is execution, and this article truly covers a big chunk of it. Thanks for such a wealth of information… 

  18. Thank you for sharing such valuable content, looks amazing. This article is really informative. I really like the concept that how a small business can market itself on social media effectively. Keep up the good work.

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