There’s an abundance of social media opportunities these days for small business owners who want to advertise their product or service.
The difficulty can sometimes arise when, after you’ve created your lovely new Facebook page (great job!) and started a Twitter account (woo hoo!) and even posted a few relevant photos on Pinterest or Instagram (very nice!) how do you manage and maintain the content?
Becoming a trusted and knowledgeable face, if you will, on social media requires some planning. Maybe you’ve heard of the 40/40/20 rule? Loosely translated you should be posting informative content 40% of the time, having a conversation with your potential clients 40% of the time and talking about your product 20% of the time.
Depending on how many social media vehicles you use, it’s important to remember that even if you have 10,000 “Likes” and 10,000 “Followers” (although, those are impressive numbers) these entities are intangible. Those “Likes” and “Followers” can be taken away tomorrow (if something happened to those platforms). Therefore, it is equally important that you create something that does belong to you. A website, a blog, an email list, whatever makes the most sense for you. (maybe all three?)
That way, if those “Likes” and “Followers” are gone tomorrow, you won’t need to freak out! You will own your blog, and your email list (and possibly your website if it’s self-hosted) and all those contacts remain the lifeblood of your business and your social media building blocks.
It is true that social media can take up a great deal of your time, and most likely feel overwhelming and lead to burnout because after-all, you are creating your empire in the meantime!
But, do not underestimate the power of the social media vehicle. There are many great companies (WestJet, GoDaddy, Amazon) that are driving that social media vehicle like it’s a Formula 1 car. And for good reason. The return on investment (ROI) can be huge.
Now, maybe you’re not looking to be a social media wizard, but you like the idea of utilizing what can be essentially free marketing. This is a smart decision as a business owner, kind of a no-brainer really.
However, you need to have a vision. A plan. Yep, just like all the other steps it’s taken to get you this far, you need to decide what content you want your customers to read, decide what you’re going to post that will allow people to get a little glimpse into your personality and decide how and when that’s all going to take place. This is your social media vision.
Without a plan, without vision, it will be difficult to gain that return on investment, and justify the time that you put into social media (remember, you’re rocking out your empire here!) But, with the right plan, and the right vision, you’ll see your business grow, you’ll become more in tune with your customers and their needs and you’ll find your voice to share some of your wisdom and maybe even a little humor to the masses! (Or at least your target audience).
Aaannnd…here’s a little infographic (because I love infographics) on just how social media drives traffic to your website (remember, that thing that you actually own).