10 tips for Small Business Social Media – LocalHere are 10 tips for Local Social Marketing in 2017 and beyond.
Is your business local, regional, national or international? In this segment we’re talking Local. Actually We’re always talking local. Here a some tips to help guide you down the path of Local Social.
1. Your business should have a presence on social media.
Your business should be active and established as a branded presence on social media. The reason? All of your competitors are there and active. If you’re not you’ll be left in the dust. So to be active you may need to determine where your customers are. Where they congregate, where they talk and ask questions. Your business needs to be there. There may mean becoming active on multiple platforms. Multiple platforms you might ask? Yes, multiple. Yikes. Who has time for all of that, I’ve got a business to run. That’s right you do.
Ok so let’s look at the elephant in the room. The first location is Facebook. Billions of people are here. Yes that’s right, with a capital B. Billions. Your business should be here too. Social media from the local perspective is huge. Let’s take 1 of my managed social groups Scituate Monthly. It was created to get people to talk about local happenings in and around Scituate. It started small with a handful of people. I was overjoyed when we hit 100 members. Now there’s more than Seven Thousand members and growing. Many many of them don’t ever post. But they all read it. I’ve met at least 100 members who’ve said straight out it’s the first source of info they read in the am. If i want to know what’s going on in town, I check Fbook. If I’m looking to buy a new product or need a service I check Facebook for recommendations. I listen to people’s recommendations. If there are enough, I’m probably swayed to make a purchase or at least to do a deeper dive on the item or service. So as you can see Facebook is a force to be reckoned with.
For you and your business, this platform requires time. It requires more than a Facebook page you and your teenager created over the weekend. Actually all social media requires time. Time to nurture, to ask questions, time to provide answers.
Facebook has a couple options for your business. You can develop a group or a page. If it’s for a business, it’s usually a page you need. To start you should have a cover photo. Wether it’s a photo of your face or your logo it needs to be sized proportional to your platform. Have your graphic designer if you have one or ask us to help you to create an impactful full image logo for you. This logo can be swapped out later if need be.
2. Is Your business is Local?
If so than Speak local. Establish your brand locally. Tell it’s story through images and conversations from a local level across pertinent social media platforms. Wether it’s Facebook, instagram, snap chat or any of the others we’re talking local. Provide local answers, discuss local events, sports, history. Think local.
There are so many platforms out there and your business needs to be on a few. A few, not all. No one has time for that and you shouldn’t try to either.
Let’s go back to my group. Remember it’s a group around a niche not a business page. Although I have built a website too, more about the why a website too in an upcoming post. Back to the group, and this same concept holds true for all. Speak about things locally. You’re audience will appreciate you for it. You become the authoritative figure around your group or page. When events are happening people will reach out to you. Now remember this, people will reach out to you. They may call you or email. Or personal message you, this personal messenger is facebooks new projects. You need to set this up and be active here too. Sounds like a lot of work, right? Well yes it is. I’ve been contacted on a number of occasions to lend a hand on projects or help companies get set up on Fbook. I even manage a number of clients Social Media accounts. We can talk about this later too.
3. Social Media isn’t like traditional media of say 10 or even 5 years ago.
For that matter it’s not the same as even a couple years ago. Social is now. It changes everyday. It’s not where you can set it up and forget it. It’s active, conversations are happening right now. Local people are talking about your brand right now. Social media requires on-going interaction when your prospects and customers are active, not just during business hours. You’re online during the evening, so are your customers. The same for weekends. Listen to your customers. You engage with them on their terms, not yours.
4. Social media is multi-directional.
So you must be prepared for customer responses. Do you actively listen online for your brands name? Do you respond to questions or inquires in a timely fashion? Set up some Google listening to actively seek and respond to folks talking about your business. Become active. Set up and listen to your competitors chatter. This is the tricky part because this is where the time constrains come in. Depending on what type of business you have will determine how much time you can afford in the Social Media marketing area. Remember you have a business to run too, Right?
5. Get started on Instagram
Have you started an Instagram account for your business? The younger generation has flocked to this social media platform with over 300 million monthly active users. It’s important to keep tabs on the younger crowd. Stay relevent to them. This group will soon be your new clientele. Instagram is a great tool to post images on your product or service. Here you can tag people, phrases, locations or make up your own. Set a tag up for your business and tag it for all exclusive or exciting events. Tag it on Facebook, people will find you and follow there. Because Instagram is such a hot topic, we’re going to talk more about it in a future post. Stay tuned.
6. Paid promotion on Facebook
Have you looked at boosting/ paying for your posts? Adding just $5.00 in promotional spend to selected Facebook posts could increase your interaction. Facebook is becoming the location, to play. Now it’s more of pay to play. You may notice a spike in communication, once you start paying. Most large companies all handle promotions on Facebook. Large companies equals large budgets. Not every post should be boosted. Only important items. You should determine your posts demographics and cater your post to them. You should focus on posts that can yield the best results. Most important, set a budget and stick to it.
7. Start Blogging
Do you blog? Current content gets you noticed by Google. Increase your SEO by blogging frequently. Share your blog posts across all of your social platforms. Additionally, a blog can serve as content for a Facebook and Twitter post as well as a teaser for an email marketing campaign. By creating better blog content in 2017, your web traffic will increase and your content will become more compelling.
8. Email marketing
If you are a business that only sends out one email blast per month, start doubling this number and send out at least two per month. Nordstrom sends out multiple email blasts EACH DAY! If you have compelling content that would be informative to the subscribers on your email list, tell them about it via email communications. One suggestion is to send out a large newsletter with lots of content at the beginning of the month and then divide the content by the remaining number of weeks and send an email out each week. (but never on a Monday-lowest open rate day!) Email is not dead. Email addresses rarely ever get changed. More on email in a later post.
9. Twitter outreach
There has been a lot of frustration amongst marketers over all of the advertising that various social media channels are forcing businesses to partake in. Luckily, Twitter is still a great platform where you can grow your following organically. Start searching for hashtags within your industry. Reach out to users in this fashion. Start reaching your target audience via tweets through the perfect Twitter outreach strategy in 2017. Personally I’m not a big twitter fan. Most of my content creation revolves around Facebook, instagram, email and blogging. But hey that’s just me. Your business may be different.
10. Last but not least LinkedIn
Make your employees shine on LinkedIn. Provide professional photographs and videos to support your employees, especially your sales team. Help craft their profiles. Every now and again post an image that seems a bit more suited for Facebook or Instagram- This will provide your connections with something fresh to look at. Ex. A happy Monday photo or #TGIF. Take some time to like and comment on your connections posts. Go through your connections and endorse them and be sure to say congrats on their new promotion. Gain a reputation on LinkedIn. Re bet to sprinkle in about your business. But do not sell.
If you have questions or would like to reach me on any of the above sections, drop me a line here in the comments section or forward over an email to: firstname.lastname@example.org. Consider Scituate Monthly for business listings and other social media requirements and objectives.
Thanks for reading.
Bill Blake is the founder and administrator of the FB Group Scituate Monthly. Bill has also developed and maintains the website Scituate Monthly. Com which showcases the local Scituate area, business owners and highlights the small entrepreneurs of the area. The site also maintains a number of tabs such as an ever increasing listing of local businesses with links, phone numbers and other pertainent information. A growing number of the businesses are Scituate Monthly Business Members. These businesses are broadcast and disucssed on his FB group. Many of these businesses are listed and mentioned frequently due to their local charitable contributions in Scituate and the surrounding area. Bill is passionate for Social Media along with his background in business management/marketing/printing to guide him to the creation of Scituate Monthly. Bill is in the process now of initiating a new venture. An enewsletter aptly named the Sciutate Spark. Its a members only goup. The enewsletter highlights local businesses who also deliver discounted coupons from spotlighted businesses. Presently the group is closed to new members. The group may open to new members in January 2018. Question for Bill? Drop him a note.