Social Media Marketing for Small Business
Here a few small tips for Small business owners wanting to improve on Digital Marketing efforts. For the sake of simplicity through such a broad topic, there are two categories in this article, Organic (Free) and PPC (Paid). The aim of this article is to have you thinking briefly about Social Media Marketing for Small Business in a systematic way with focused outcomes.
Organic Social Media
Social Media Marketing Plan
Where to start? What channels are of best use? These are tricky questions, Most Marketers and SEO Experts will say that you should have presence across all channels. Realistically, We know that isn’t possible or productive when your time is valuable elsewhere in your business.
To figure out which Platforms are most useful to you, you need to define the Marketing goal based on your businesses current focus, there are hundreds of platforms out there and all with some amazing benefits. Your Marketing Goal can be to create an initial Digital Footprint, Build Social Proof, Develop Brand Awareness, Increase Sales, Increase Leads or All of the above.
With the exceptions of cross platform integrations, you will need to research the main platforms your customer spends the most time on. For example, A Fintech software startup focusing on Commercial Lending will have far less success on Pinterest or Instagram than on Linkedin. This seems ridiculously simple, however, its a mistake that we see many small businesses make when focusing on Social Media Marketing or Social Media Management and trying to to ambitiously focus on achieving various results across a spectrum of platforms.
Each goal requires a strategically developed plan.
Decide on your Outcome for the platform, Pick one goal that is achievable and realistic, then start systematically accomplishing the steps needed to achieve the goal. Careful Execution is equally important in your Social Media Marketing plan.
Social Media Marketing Example
Here’s a quick scenario…You have just created a new travel app and your start up has 3 social media accounts (Facebook, Instagram, Twitter), minimal followers/fans, engagement is low, no referrals or reviews, content isn’t structured or professional, among other issues.
The first realistic goal that will be required, develop Social Proof! Display value to your prospective customer across your social media platforms.
- Focus on getting reviews
- Creating engaging and professional content with accurate audience tone.
- Use professional imagery
- Display Authentic statements and posts.
You will want your customers and leads to arrive on your page/account and notice that the page is ‘alive’, it provides them with visual or content value, and the page displays other visitors engaging and endorsing the account or page.
How long will Social Media Marketing take?
This goal takes time! Dont rush it! Develop a thoroughly researched Marketing plan, Audience and Customer research, along with content plan for your blogs and posts.
Bonus tip-The reviews should be from customers or clients (if you don’t have any, free samples or free consultations can assist in gaining some nice testimonials).
Now that the Social Media is growing, is PPC the next step across the social media platforms?
…It definitely is an option that you should look into and develop an understanding.
The same analysis must be done with your PPC Marketing efforts, and most importantly, don’t neglect your Marketing budget!
One of the biggest misconceptions with PPC or any digital marketing is that if you pay for ad’s, customers and sales will come! Unfortunately, its not true. There are thousands of horror stories of small business owners throwing large amounts into Social Media ad’s, eventually losing large amounts of money or putting serious financial strain on the business.
There are two simple methods that can assist in preventing you from putting a dent into your marketing budget .
- Research the platforms advertising outcomes (matching them against your own) along with setting a Budget- Are you looking at Brand Awareness or sales? Do you need as many people as possible to see your Ads or do you need a customized audience to click on your ads. Once you have researched and decided, you can create your Budget, it can be then manually set as a daily or Monthly budget that will have the advertising on hold once the budget limit has been reached. Ensure the advertising platform has this budget input and set, along with your outcomes defined in the campaign. Note- Some platforms cannot guarantee your budget will be stopped once it has been reached, so you will need to monitor this
- Opportunity Cost- Is it easier and cheaper to have a professional create and manage these Social Media accounts? Social Media Marketing and Social Media Management can be time consuming and distracting for a small business owner and the staff. The hours and expertise taken from the business might be more costly to the business than paying for a professional to focus on the Marketing and management.
Social Media Marketing for Small Business is a complicated process that requires researching, planning, and implementation focus. Like any part of the business, it requires frequent and detailed attention to achieve success.
These tips above aren’t revolutionary by any means, although, they hopefully have provided some thought from a practical approach that you can implement into your small business growth strategies.
If you need any assistance or have any questions about the above article, feel free to reach out to the Wizard team or myself anytime.