Back in the Stone Age ( a.k.a. before we had the internet), businesses had to network and promote their product the hard way. With good old fashioned advertising. Cheesy infomercials, billboards, and thousands of hand-sealed mail ads that just ended up in the trash. Can you imagine? Fast forward to today, and we have the possibility of building a world-wide, ever-expanding following. All at the convenience of our portable devices.
What makes this possible? Social media. If you’re a new business owner or your social media following is looking a bit sad, this article is for you. There’s an art to collecting a quality audience. Certain steps and strategies should be taken to reach full potential for your business.
First things first-
- Prioritize your platforms
Promoting your business on social media is not a one-size-fits-all situation. Without a sound strategy, you could end up wasting energy and resources on disappointing results. That’s not to say having a presence on multiple platforms isn’t a smart move. But knowing how to use these platforms to your advantage will get you further in building a large following.
To maximize your success, find out where your target audience most likely is and where to share certain types of content. The Pew Research Center did a study on demographics and statistics of social media. Check out their results, plus dig deeper for your industry and find what works.
- Showcase your brand
Show your audience who you are, loud and proud! Take social media as an opportunity to really develop your brand identity. Use your written and visual content to express your businesses values and mission.
Start by having a logo attached to all of your content and social media pages. If you still need a logo, there’s a free tool called LogoCreator.io which offers templates and design tools to get you going. Additionally, you can personalize your content style with the use of graphic design. Canva offers easy to use and free software for creating some gorgeous graphics for your content.
- Get in with the big guys
Social media is a way to connect with not only your audience, but also the inspirational leaders in your line of business. Chances are, there are social media influencers that your target audience already follows. Do your research and find out who they are.
Build your network full of businesses and people that align with your brand. Not only can you learn from them, but you can also broaden your reach and boost your following this way. Pay attention to the hottest topics being discussed and join the conversation.
A great tool for social media management is called Hootsuite. This software makes it easy to plan, create, and manage all of your social media engagements in one place. It’s conversation monitoring tool tells you what’s being discussed in your line of business over social media. Plus, Hootsuite directs you towards the top influencers in your industry, so you can start building your network.
- Make it easy to connect
Another easy way to grow your social media following is to subtly suggest it- whenever possible. Sounds simple enough, but opportunity for this tends to get overlooked. For example, in each Email newsletter make sure to add links back to your social media account. Mailchimp makes this easy with the option to connect a social follow block to all of your Emails.
Make social media links easy to find throughout your website and blog as well. Create content that’s easily shareable with links to all of your social media pages. Focus on building likability. Always provide high-quality content for your audience. This way they’re happy to share your content and follow you on multiple platforms.