Wouldn't it be nice if you had unlimited access to an entire video department that could make super engaging and beautiful videos that you could share across all your social channels? Or a graphics department that could take any idea you have floating around in your mind and make it into a beautiful design to perfectly fit on all your social feeds? Not to mention a word-wizard copywriter who can take your half-baked ideas and make them sound like a Robert Frost poem?
Unfortunately, not everyone is lucky enough to have an entire team of specialized individuals in-house. So how can you and your small business still make a splash in the giant ocean that is social media?
Here are five starter tips for social media to give your small business a more lasting impression.
Just because you may not be Spielberg behind the camera doesn't mean that you should avoid video like the plague. (It's the most-engaged-with type of social content, after all—you can't afford to skip it over.) When people see videos on their social feeds they want to see media that is put together well, employs some nice editing and features breath-taking visuals.
But an entry-level small business tactic can include live video. It requires almost no upfront budget outside of basic recording equipment (perhaps even just a smartphone), so a small company can take full advantage.
Just remember that there's more to going live than hitting record on your phone—check out this blog for tips on going live as a business owner.
Absolutely nothing can replace an amazing designer working on your marketing—it's worth the investment to put an effort into your graphical representation. But as a small or emerging business, creating graphics and visuals for your social posts can be daunting—particularly if you have no prior design background.
Until you're able to afford that sought-after professional eye, there are some ways to tide you over.
There are multiple online platforms out there that can accomplish the same task—but as far as features and flexibility go (and making graphics that at least can pass the newsfeed sniff test) Canva is typically the best and most effective. Not only does it template social graphic specs, but with simple, drag-and-drop features, it can make the process more painless.
Over the years, social channels have moved more and more toward paid content. And if you're under the impression you'll grow your page to millions of followers by only posting organically, you are in for a bitter surprise.
It may seem scary to set up a social ad manager, but once it's up and running, it can be quite simple to get entry-level results. (Fair warning, though—you will fail. That’s just the name of the game. Some things are much easier to promote and share than others, so brush yourself off an try again.)
After a few attempts, you will get the hang of targeting your ads smartly. Just make sure to rotate in some content regularly—and once you have a more boast-worthy budget, hiring a professional to run your paid social media can be a huge boon to your bottom line. Hire someone who's geeky enough to know every in and out of each channel's system!
Looking at getting your business's Instagram account up and running? (Again, this isn’t going to happen overnight and will take a little time and effort—but it can be done!)
Start searching any and all relevant hashtags that have to do with your product or business, and start liking some posts. If it is really worth your while, a quick comment can be the difference between a follow and someone just overlooking your page. The trick here is to be on the lookout for a brand advocate, someone that is just crazy about your brand or product who wants to share with all their friends.
Once you have him or her on your radar, think about sending a product to do a T&E (test & evaluate) on and ask the advocate to promote your page for you—social media has a lot to do with back-scratching.
Besides connecting your website with your respective business pages on social media, you also need to add social media buttons to your website so that readers can easily share your content. This should be a no-brainer! This needs to be a bidirectional relationship—social followers should be able to easily locate your website and web visitors should be able to easily track down your social profiles.
Food for thought—try and keep those social buttons above the fold on your home page for maximum exposure. Plus, the bigger the button, the better the click quotient—particularly if social media is a big part of your business's marketing strategy.