10 Quick & Easy Ways To Grow Your Business Using Social Media
1. Decide what social media platforms to use for your business
- If you sell to other businesses, you will need to have a Company Profile on LinkedIn.
- If you sell to the public (consumers) you will almost certainly want to be on Facebook.
- Whether you are business-to-business (B2B) or business-to-consumer (B2C) you will also need to have a Google+ Page and a corporate Twitter account.
- If your business lends itself to video having a corporate YouTube account could also be very valuable.
2. Decide on what you want to achieve from social media.
- Set objectives that will help the business. Otherwise, you can end up doing social media for no discernable benefit.
- An example is to ‘increase the number of visitors to your website by 30% in the next 6 months’ or ‘drive sales via social media by £x p.a. by displaying y number of products p.m.
3. Decide on how you want your business to be seen on social media i.e. what’s your social media brand – formal, corporate, fun, provocative, educational or other?
- Ensure that your posts reflect your desired social media brand.
4. Decide on who will take a lead and ‘do your social media’.
- Typically, that can be someone in-house (if they have the skills) or someone from outside such as a freelancer or social media consultant (which avoids the risks and costs of employing someone specifically to do this work).
5. Commit to posting regularly.
- Results won’t necessarily come instantly and social media requires that ‘you give before you get’.
- Start with 2 to 3 posts per week and work up to 1 per day
6. Add links in your posts to certain pages of your website in order to drive traffic to your website to increase the likelihood of enquiries and/or sales.
7. Ask the people that follow you on social media questions in order to try to start a conversation with them, rather than just ‘broadcast’ or ‘sell’ to them in every post.
- People want interesting and valuable content rather than just being sold to.
8. Understand social media etiquette:
- be respectful to all, be polite, be solution-focused, be nice, act in a helpful manner, don’t slag off your competition and try to ‘talk’ to your followers rather than just ‘sell’ to them.
9. Brainstorm ideas for content with as many people in your business as possible.
- Encourage them to make ideas on an ongoing basis. They will probably come up with the best ideas!
10. Join relevant groups and answer questions in order to showcase your expertise. This will eventually generate enquiries and sales leads.
Why Is Social Media Important To Your Business?
Social media provides unlimited opportunities for businesses, of all sizes, to promote their products and services to new and existing customers.
Basically, thousands of people in your local area are using four main social media platforms, which means that these people could become customers of yours – if you know how to attract and convert them!
However, many businesses, particularly small and medium-sized businesses, have not yet grasped these opportunities due to a lack of knowledge or skills to harness these sites as new ways to market themselves.
But social media is happening AND it’s a phenomenon.
It is now becoming so universal that you and your business may be affected – even if you chose not to be involved!
You are likely to be referred to on social media – positively or not – even if you are not on social media.
The new adage is: ‘you’re on social media whether you like it or not’.
If you ARE on social media, you can at least try to control how the world sees you or your business. If you are not on social media and your customers or other parties criticise your business, you can’t easily defend yourself.
Here are some basic facts about these four social networking platforms: Google+, Twitter, LinkedIn and Facebook:
- More than 12.6million registered users in the UK
- 1.15 billion users worldwide!
- Now the #2 social media platform in the world after Facebook
- 70% of brands have a presence on Google+
- Almost 800,000 people sign up to Google+ every month!
- Higher Google+1s = higher search engine rankings
- More than 24 million active DAILY users in the UK
- More than 1,350 million (i.e. 1.35 billion) active monthly users worldwide!
- 50% of users log on in any given day – for at least 21 minutes
- Anyone can get up a Fan page and slag you off e.g. ‘McDonald’s sucks’ etc., Reputation management now the biggest worry for major companies
- More than 42 million Pages on Facebook
- Average user becomes a Fan of 4 Pages each month
- Facebook Pages helps with SEO of your website
- More than 15 million users in the UK
- 20% of all tweets contained reference to a product or brand
- 50 million tweets sent a day worldwide
- Can be used to promote news, events, new appointments, new website, success, and defend criticism or complaints!
- More than 230 million users worldwide
- 15 million users in the UK
- 347 million users worldwide
- Free advertising of your services and expertise
- Ability to identify prospects
- Free to post jobs on site if you are hiring
- Is becoming part of the ‘sifting’ or selection process of companies wanting new suppliers
- Status Updates = free advertising
- Q & As = show and ‘advertise’ your expertise
Social media is now used by millions of people (including many of your customers) both here in the UK and across the world.
People use it to connect with other people but also to find products and services that they may need.
Social media provides all businesses with a free, relatively easy way to promote their business to existing and potential new customers.
Those that are embracing social media and investing some time and effort into learning how to get the most from social media are really helping to grow their businesses.
For those businesses that haven’t yet considered social media (for whatever reason) or are not taking full advantage of the benefits of social media, they are definitely missing an opportunity to grow their business and are ‘leaving money on the table’.
We believe it is, therefore, becoming imperative that virtually all businesses participate, to some degree, in social media.