9 ways to grow your small business with social media marketing

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Over the past decade, small businesses have increasingly relied on social media marketing to reach customers, build brand awareness and drive sales. Whether you’re just starting out or you’ve been in business for years, social media marketing can help your small business reach its full potential. You don’t need to invest thousands of dollars in marketing to grow your following and be successful with social media marketing – you need to use it strategically and effectively. To help you grow your small business through social media marketing, we’ve put together this list of nine tips you can use in your next campaign.

Related: 5 Components Your Content Marketing Strategy Needs

1. Decide which platform is best for your business

Social media is a great place to start if you’re considering branching out and exploring new avenues of marketing. Instagram is a great way for businesses with visual products (like clothing or jewelry) to showcase their work. Twitter can be a powerful tool for building relationships and customer service. Facebook is the most popular platform on the web, so it’s worth experimenting with. Not only can you create a Facebook page for your business and post updates, but you can also build a community around it by liking pages related to your work. This will attract new subscribers interested in your industry.

2. Develop a social media calendar

Start by researching your competitors on all major social media platforms. Find out what they do, how often they post, and what their posts look like. By looking at their work, you’ll be able to determine if you want to emulate them or start on your own. Once you find a strategy that works for you, create an editorial calendar with specific daily tasks and goals set. You should update your social media throughout the week rather than just once a week. Posting more often keeps people interested and brings them back to your site.

3. Recognize when it’s time to pivot

You may have used a certain method or strategy successfully in the past, but there may come a time when it no longer works or becomes ineffective. If this happens, don’t be afraid to switch gears and try something new that might work better for your business today.

Related: When to pivot your business — and when you should just stop

4. Stay on top of trends

One of the best things you can do for your business is stay in tune with what’s happening in the digital world. Read blogs, magazines, books, and publications about new technologies and innovations that will be relevant to your industry. Join groups, attend events, and network with others working in the field to stay up-to-date with consumers using new channels.

5. Enjoy live video

Live video is a great way to engage with customers, react quickly, and provide a behind-the-scenes look at what’s going on in your office. It’s also a great way to offer quick tutorials or insight into the day-to-day running of your business. If you’re struggling to come up with content ideas, try using live video to fill in the time while you think of something else to say.

Related: Why More Brands Are Uploading Their Videos (And Why You Should Too)

6. Host a contest or giveaway

Create a contest or giveaway centered around your product or service. Simplify and facilitate people’s participation by using a form on your website. You can run this contest or giveaway on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, etc. If you’re offering a physical prize like a t-shirt or mug, make sure shipping is included in the price of the item. Consider setting up a timeline with milestones so customers can see how they are progressing through the different tiers of competition. Let them know how many more entries they need to get before they reach their next milestone. For example, when a customer has five entries, tell them it takes ten more to win a shirt!

7. Collaborate with other businesses or influencers

Collaborating with other businesses or influencers can be a great way to leverage each other’s audience and increase exposure for both parties. The key is to find a pairing that makes sense and is relevant to the industry. For example, if you have a beauty salon, partnering with a hairstylist would make more sense than partnering with an accountant. Not only do they belong to different industries, but they also don’t target the exact demographics of people. Other businesses that may partner well with yours include those in similar fields, such as trade show vendors, suppliers, and manufacturers.

Related: 5 Steps to Creating a Content Marketing Strategy That Actually Works

8. Take advantage of paid advertising

Social media advertising is a cost-effective way to drive traffic and increase conversions to your website. Facebook Ads, Twitter Ads, and Instagram Ads are all great ways to reach audiences who might not otherwise come across your content. Targeting based on location, interests, demographics and more helps you reach the people most likely to be interested in your offer! If you use Facebook or Twitter ads, be sure to set up conversion tracking to see which campaigns work best for your goals. You can use tools like Google Analytics or Universal Analytics if you use Instagram ads to track how many users visit your site after clicking on an ad.

9. Be sure to include strong calls to action

One of the best things about social media marketing is that it allows us to create one call to action per post, as opposed to one call to action per page (as we would on our site) . It’s essential that you put yourself in the shoes of someone browsing their feed – what does this post look like from their perspective?

In conclusion, the most important thing to remember about any business is that it is a living, breathing entity. One of the best ways to keep your business alive is to use social media as a marketing tool. Posting on Facebook and Twitter can help you stay visible and fresh in the minds of potential customers. You should also use other platforms such as YouTube, LinkedIn or Google+ if they fit your business needs.

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