Here at Tigerlily, one of the questions we get asked from our small business clients is, "Do I really need social media?" The real question is less about whether you need it (trust us, you do), but more about how are you using it?
In our increasingly digital world, you'd be hard-pressed to compete without having a digital voice. This means not only having a website, but helping drive traffic back to that website -- often enhanced through the use of your socials.
Consumers have shown that they are far more interested in getting to know a brand through their content than they are through traditional ads. Social media accounts provide a way for them to interact with you minus the hard sales push. This is your opportunity to speak directly to your customer base in a way that allows them to understand your brand and what you're offering.
With that in mind, here are a few dos and don'ts to help get you started building your own audience.
Do: Focus on a few choice social accounts to begin.
Too many people make the mistake of trying to manage every social outlet available to them. They often get overwhelmed, stretching their resources too thin, and subsequently become discouraged and abandon them as a failure. It's better to pick a few and focus your efforts on growing an engaged audience with them.
Don't: Depend on socials for all traffic.
Social media accounts are there to enhance your traffic sources and consumer experience. They should not be relied on as the sole method for interacting with your customers. Remember, social media accounts are a third party and can change the rules at any given time. So, use them but don't forget to also point back to something you own. Your website. Your blog posts. And continue the conversation there.
Do: Update your accounts regularly.
Social is based on conversations. For that to happen, you have to interact with your followers. That means posting new (and interesting) content with frequency, responding to comments and questions, thanking people for their interest in your business and other related visibility. Too long between posts and people may lose interest.
Don't: Post too often.
If you post too frequently, you may dilute your message and overwhelm your followers. The trick is to find a happy medium between the two, and each company is different. To help gauge, think like your audience, how often do you want to hear from one person?
Do: Remember to look at your metrics.
Many social platforms offer their own set of tools to see how your content is performing. It's worth looking at to see what's working and what isn't. You should also set up Google Analytics on your website to get additional insight into which posts are leading to traffic on your site and sales.
Don't: Get discouraged.
Growing your numbers and building an engaged following TAKES TIME. Though there are services out there to grow an audience quickly, they often only help with appearances. Fake accounts, bots and "quid pro quo" followers aren't likely to interact with your content. And if they aren't sharing your stuff, then they aren't of much help to your bottom line. So, relax. Know in advance not every post is going to be a raging success, and that's okay. You can learn from it all.
For more social and content marketing tips, make sure to continue to follow our blog. Stay up-to-date on our social channels by joining us on Twitter: @TLilyLA, Facebook: www.facebook.com/tigerlilyconsultants and Instagram: www.instagram.com/tigerlilyconsultants.com