Social media marketing can seem like a daunting and time-consuming task, especially for small business owners. At this point, most business owners understand that being active on social media is essential for increasing brand awareness and driving sales. At BCI media, we know that the time it takes to build a social media strategy can be hard for any small business owner to find. But, it’s important to remember, according to today’s statistics, there are now 4.2 billion active social media users, and each of them spends an average of 2 hours and 25 minutes on social channels every single day. That’s 2.5 hours a day that your business can use to build brand awareness, develop customer relations and even make sales within social platforms. If you’re wondering how to simplify social media for your small businesses, here are six essential tips to get started.
1. Plan and Research
One of the best things about social media is that all of the platforms are free to use. It doesn’t cost anything to create a business Facebook Page, post on Instagram or create a presence on Twitter. The tools may be free, but the time and effort involved still represent an investment in your business. As the old adage goes, “time is money.” Before you dive in, you need to make a plan. Create goals that follow the SMART framework and base them on metrics that will have an impact on your business.
2. Conduct a Social Media Audit
If you’re already using social media for your business, take the time to evaluate your existing efforts. Determine what’s working, and what’s not. Are there outdated profiles that need refreshing? Look for new opportunities to grow and engage your audience. To help you with this, we’ve got an easy-to-use social media audit template right here. (LINK TO PREVIOUS POST)
3. Get to Know Your Audience
Because of its ability to micro-target your audience, social media has become a powerful tool for business. But before you can micro-target them, you’ll need to first understand who your audience is. Once you’ve defined your audience, you can move forward to determine which platforms your audience is most active on.
3. Determine Which Platforms Are Right for Your Business
There’s no shortage of platforms to choose from out there, so you’ll need to narrow it down to one or two key places to focus your efforts. You can read all about the top platforms here, but generally speaking, Facebook has a slightly older user base with the average user being 40 years old. The data also shows that nearly a quarter of all Facebook users are aged 18 to 24 so don’t discount the platform just because you are targeting GenZ. Instagram can be a good fit for businesses with visually appealing products or services like art galleries, or restaurants. Pinterest is perfect for craft businesses and home and garden companies, while Twitter is best suited to the news and entertainment industries. Along with the top players, you can also choose from TikTok, the place for all the younger generations. LinkedIn and the newly started Clubhouse are both great choices in the B2B world. Choosing the platforms you want to be on doesn’t have to be an all-or-nothing deal. The average user has 8.4 social media accounts so connecting with them in multiple places is easy.
4. Create a Social Media Calendar
A social media calendar helps you keep you on track to post the right content to the right platform at the right time. It also helps to eliminate the dreaded “what should I post today?” dilemma. When planning content, you should always follow the 80-20 rule. This means that 80% of your content should be marketing used to inform, educate or entertain your audience. The other 20% should be advertising used to promote your brand or sell your products. To help you, check out this article about the difference between marketing and advertising and why you need both.
5. Utilize the Right Tools
If the thought of keeping track of what to post where and when is going to keep you up at night, don’t worry. There’s an app for that! Social media schedulers such as Later and Hootsuite can be a lifesaver with automated posting to multiple social channels. Social schedulers range from free versions to paid versions, and each has its own pros and cons, so you’ll need to spend the time to determine which platform is best for you. If you need help creating graphics, free platforms like PicMonkey can help you become a photo editing wizard in no time. And, be sure to utilize Google’s free analytics tool to help keep track of your efforts.
6. Hire an Agency
After all these tips for simplifying social media, the easiest way hands down to simplify the task of social media management is to hire an agency like BCI Media. With us, you get a dedicated team to manage all of your marketing needs. From web design and SEO to social media management and video, BCI Media does it all. If you’re ready to save time and grow your small business, contact us today!