Social media and big business have a special kind of love affair. The problem is, when it comes to small businesses capitalizing on social resources, there’s often the all-to-daunting question of where, exactly, to start. This confusion often spawns a seemingly prototypical response: Social is not right for my business. It is easy to dismiss the potential of social media marketing when that first blog or tweet goes un-talked about. Read on for some tips for where to start when generating a social media marketing strategy for a small business.
Be your own bookie
Numbers are key to knowing where to focus your energy. While outsourcing is an efficient solution, it’s not completely necessary to launch by employing a third-party analytics or automation platform. Keeping track of your social activity might be, at first, as easy as logging your daily ratio of tweets to re-tweets. How many individuals “Liked” an update? What was the subject matter of that post? All of these are things to note.
Know the relationship between media and platform
The type of media you’re trying to publish has a close relationship with the platform you are using for distribution. For instance, Tweeting is ideal for hyperlinks, URL’s and quick bytes of information. Pinterest is great for images. Facebook is excellent for sharing, contesting, couponing and telling stories. Think about what you are putting out there and recognize the ideal platform to utilize.
Rebuild your brand
When you go social, you are telling the world that you are ready to interact. You have just showed up at the party of the year and it’s time to prove to everyone just how interesting you are. Maybe the sign outside your office is beige; your best customer is your eighty-year-old relative or you only have three employees— none of it matters anymore. Stepping into the world of social media marketing is a fresh start for your brand, your image, and the dialect through which you choose to translate. Why are you different from your competition? What do you want people to notice? Think of it as the first day of high school.
Invest in your community
Big things have small beginnings. Share your insights with the community and develop a group of references, mentors, partners, and affiliates with a presence on social networks. Address questions, concerns, events, and trends in your area and collaborate with local entities to maximize local impact on a global scene through couponing, special offers, sponsorship, and symbiotic promotions. Keep it close to home.