Simple Social Media for Small Business

November 26, 2012

Social Media can seem overwhelming if you have thousands of other things to do – even more so if you are not well-versed in the etiquette of social media.

Thankfully, there are only a few tips you really need to get you started:

 1. Be Social

Social media is as it sounds – social. People do not like to be ‘marketed’ to on Facebook, Twitter and other networks – especially when you are a newcomer to the platform.

Your mothers old adage ‘to gain a friend, you must be a friend’ rings true here (who knew mum was so forward thinking?). Post humorous (yet tasteful) jokes, news items about the area where you are located, charity events, photos of your items, store or location, request your users to post their own pictures, and respond to all their comments.

You may post the occasional promotional item, but items that will be more readily received will be specials, tips or value-adding information. Remember, by being your ‘friend’ on Facebook or Twitter, your customer or client is inviting you into their social home, do not abuse the privilege.

In time your page will be alive with action and you will have gained the trust of your fans!


2. Value Add

People what to feel that by adding you to their ‘likes’ they are receiving some value. Ensure you offer some Facebook or Twitter only specials, news tidbits or competitions – let them know you appreciate their support and patronage and that they are receiving a benefit that they would not have otherwise have received.

Remember whatever you post on your Facebook wall, if your likers comment on it or ‘like’ it, their friends in turn will see your post on their wall – thereby potentially increasing your businesses visibility exponentially. You want to ensure that your posts are appealing to all they may come in contact with. Remind yourself to review and confirm they are ‘value-adding’ every time you post and this will show up in your response and likers.

Value adding does not always need to be a discount or other promotion. It can be a particularly amusing joke or photo (everyone loves to laugh), or it could be a great tip or ‘how-to’ pertinent to your business. Building a strong business can initially mean helping your potential clients do the work you can do, for themselves.They will always remember you when a bigger job comes about, when a colleague asks for a recommendation, or when they feel they have grown to a point that they would rather pay for the service than spend their own time doing it.

Do not discount this kind of value-adding option!


3. Photos, Photos, Photos!

Photos inspire 94% more interaction than text posts on Facebook. This is huge news for business on Facebook and you should post accordingly.

If you have a restaurant, post food photos (they don’t just have to be of your food!) If you have a store, post photos of what you are selling or other similar items. Do ensure the photos are well captured (not blurry or far in the distance) make them clean and bright, and ensure they stand out from the page and are aesthetically pleasing.

If you are part of a service industry, you can create photos from quotes, or tutorials at sites like SomeECards and other similar sites – just do a google search and see what you come up with.

Also linking to photos on your own sites or your Pinterest account is gold. This way you are referring traffic to yourself and building your online links at the same time! We’ve said it once and will say it again, Pinterest is the new marketing avenue for business and we are just seeing the tip of what it can do!


4. Make it Personal

Let’s be clear here, we’re not asking you to announce your home address to your clients. (please don’t do this!) However, statistics show that people respond best to people. Upload a few pictures of you or your staff working in your store or office (with a nice grin or a funny caption), offer staff profiles to give your fans a little personal connection to your business or have your staff post photos of their animals and ask your fans to do the same! There are many creative options here that will inspire relationships with your clients.

Connection is key, and inviting your fans to connect with you – rather than just listen and watch you – will inspire an incredible amount of loyalty and long-term relationship and referrals for your business.

All in all, there are not a lot of ways you can go wrong with social media, especially if you can remember SPVP:


Keep it clean (one rule is to never post something you wouldn’t be happy for your grandmother to see, but this one leaves us a little dubious, given some of the grandmothers we’ve come across of late). Keep it simple and keep it upbeat. Don’t bad-mouth competitors, it doesn’t reflect well on you, don’t criticize or judge.

You’ll have a loyal following in no time, but remember social media does take time – give it at least 6 months (preferably 12) of consistent posting and interaction, to see the true value of what social media can do for your business.

Unsure of just where to start and what Social Media Platforms would be best utilized by your business?

Contact us for a free evaluation or a quote for us to take over the reigns for you – even if its just to guide you and get you started. We can integrate training along with management for the first few months, saving you money and getting your started on the path to managing your own account!