Social. Media. These two
words have made you either jump for joy or curl up in a foetal position in your
pyjamas at the overwhelming nature of these platforms. Either of these
reactions are probably the reason you're here: either you love everything about
social media or the mere thought of it sends you into a panic-induced sweat.
Like it or not, it's here to stay, and in these social distancing times,
social media is more important than before for the success of your business.
Taking on the responsibility of managing your social media accounts can be both
an exciting venture and a terrifying process, especially if you're working from
home like many throughout the world. Have no fear, I'm here to tell you that
you've got this and to give you a few pro-tips. The good news is that you don't
have to be a celebrity or a household name-even if you're not a Kardashian, you
can build a great following and get more attention for your posts.
There are plenty of little-known
hacks that can upgrade your Social Media game and boost your business' following especially during a time when it is vital to stay connected to your
virtual community. Many platforms have acknowledged the hardships that small
businesses are facing during the COVID-19 crisis, and have developed features
to aid these users to expand their reach across social media. These features
can be a fantastic addition to your toolkit, but there are plenty of other ways
to reach new audiences that don't have to involve an expert understanding of
the algorithms or hours of your precious time. I've pulled together some of my favourite
essential hacks that can help you build your business' social media
presence from home.
1.Get on a schedule.
You may have heard the old age that "content is king." If that is
true then scheduling software can be considered the court jester that
makes living in the kingdom fun and also slightly easier. If you're like
me, you'd prefer to not be glued to your phone or posting content manually hour
after hour, during lunch, and in the middle of the night.
perfect solution? Social Media Management tools. There are a variety of
apps that give their users the ability to schedule content ahead of time and
free up your schedule while saving you from the hours that manual posting can
take. Depending on your specific needs, there's likely an app or tool that will
be the perfect fit for your management style, and most provide more tools-such
as analytics-that will give you the opportunity to monitor your social media
from one dashboard.
2.Don't underestimate the power of a
hashtag. Hate 'em or love 'em, hashtags can be an
excellent way to reach new audiences on social media. It's easy to get carried
away with them and tack on the maximum amount to every post, but don't get lost
by thinking too broadly. Using popular hashtags such as #love or #summer may
put you into the mix of other related posts, but there is another type of
hashtag to consider when targeting audiences who are already interested in your
industry: niche hashtags. For example, a wedding business in San Diego,
Calif., should consider using #sandiegowedding in addition to widely used
hashtags such as #wedding, to reach a more local audience. But hashtags don't
have to be restricted to just your posts; add them to your profile's bio, as
well. Instagram recently added the ability to add clickable hashtags to
your bio, making your page more searchable and leading followers towards
branded content on social media.
3.Boost blog traffic by promoting them
on social media. Blogs and online articles are an
excellent way to build your business' online community and keep followers
engaged. So, if you haven't considered starting one, go do that
now! Whether you've just started one, thanks to my advice or already had
one up and running, that's great, but don't stop at simply posting your content
to your own site. To increase traffic to your website, publish the post on your
social media accounts. Try to schedule a few posts about your blog and include
a clickable link to it, if possible (Facebook and Twitter have this feature,
Instagram requires a bit of extra finesse to give links to users). This will
help your users find your posts easily, and boost your blog views - a win-win!
4.Partner with micro-influencers.
Influencer marketing is a hot trend. It's a type of social media marketing
that involves product placement and advertising from social media users with a
large following in a specific industry (influencers). While that may sound
intimidating, don't worry; you won't need a Kylie Jenner-level influencer
(with her $1.2M per post price tag) promoting your product to do this. Think
smaller, a-la the micro-influencer. These are influencers who have
anywhere from 2,000 to 50,000 followers on social media and focus on a
specific topic or niche market. Partnering with micro-influencers gives small
businesses the opportunity to tap into influencer marketing without the costly
and often arduous task of promoting your products through top influencers. Try
searching hashtags related to your brand (remember Hack #2?) and look for
popular social media users that share a passion for your industry. Once you've
identified a few potential candidates, reach out to gauge their interest in
working with your brand-some will work for cash, some will barter, some might
accept product in exchange for posts. Find even one person who is passionate
about your product or brand and you'll be on your way to reaping the benefits
of influencer marketing in no time.
5.Understand the ideal times to post.
To post or not to post, that is the question we've all faced when deciding
whether or not to hit "publish" on our genius social media creation at 12 a.m.
Unless you're a celebrity with millions of global followers, it's best to
wait to figure out the best posting times for your specific audience. Each
platform has a general time they suggest when most users are scrolling
through-but beware of adhering to these guidelines-they're very broad and no
audience has the same habits. To determine the best posting times for your
audience, begin with making informed guesses as to time slots that could garner
traffic, such as the morning and afternoon commute or lunch break. Pay
attention to which times earn the most traffic, and tailor your strategy from
there. Build it into your plan as you set up the scheduling strategy you
learned about in Hack #1. However, this is not a one-time fix; holidays and
major events such as the COVID-19 crisis can change your followers' daily
schedules. Pay attention to these changes as they fluctuate and adjust
your social media scheduling strategy accordingly.
6.Focus less on vanity metrics; more on
engagement. Vanity metrics, by definition, are considered the
number of likes and followers you receive on social media. It's extremely easy
to buy into the idea that these are a true measure of your content's success,
but, in reality, engagement should be the number one focus. Hundreds of
likes on a social media post can show that your posts are performing well, but
engagement such as comments and conversation will demonstrate that audiences
are truly interested in your business' services or goods and the information
you share. Many social media platforms offer free analytics tools that can
provide insight into what types of content earn the most engagement on your
page. Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram all offer a free analytics tool that can help
you to figure out what your audiences are really responding to. Similar to when
determining posting times, experiment with content and constantly adjust to
posting what your followers engage with the most.