Looking to turn some heads using social media? In this era of YouTube superstars, Twitter storms, and Facebook events making headlines, it’s easy to feel left out from the social media revolution. Love it or hate it, social media represents an exciting marketing opportunity for cash-strapped businesses.
First, we’ll go over some of the most popular social networks where you can set up profiles for your business, often for free. After, we’ll touch on some of the activities that work well on these networks.
First of all, let’s start with LinkedIn, Canada’s most popular business network. Every small business should publish a LinkedIn company page, complete with a logo, profile, etc. This basic digital presence allows potential employees, recruiters, vendors, and others to find you.
Then, encourage your team to share news and updates, such as job opportunities, through their LinkedIn accounts. To build your reputation (and your networks), you and your team can publish original articles, tips, and reviews on subject matter pertinent to your audiences.
Popular social networks
Explore popular Canadian social media channels, especially if you need to reach consumers. You may already use Facebook, but have you checked out platforms like Pinterest, YouTube, Snapchat, Twitter, and Instagram? These social channels give businesses that create original visual assets—like photos, videos, and messages—powerful ways to share them.
When you use social media for business, focus on the social networks your customers and prospects seem to use the most.
Visual storytelling works wonders in social media. Great visuals help you get attention. So, show pride in your business! Take original photos designed to show off your product, design, concept, or service. You can use those assets to wow your audiences, earn likes, and attract followers.
Coordinate your efforts
Businesses increasingly hire social media coordinators or community managers to manage their social media efforts for them. With someone assigned to coordinate and execute your social networking efforts, you can get multiple channels going at once.
Of course, you can always pay to get noticed. As a business, you can buy digital ad space on pretty much all the social networks we mentioned. Those ads can help you generate leads and raise brand awareness, which ultimately translates into more sales.
Social listening (or monitoring) tools can help you measure and improve your networking efforts. They can give you a sense of what your customers and competitors are saying. Furthermore, they can help you stay on top of news, spot trends, and identify opportunities.
Keep it real
Don’t be afraid! Businesses that express themselves authentically and welcome criticism do well in social networks. It’s almost always OK to enter a conversation, even if it doesn’t initially involve you. Treat social media as an opportunity to represent yourself honestly, and to support and build relationships with people, especially customers.
Try to enjoy it
The more you view social meeting as “virtual networking,” the easier you may find it. If, at the end of the day, you can’t stand any of this social media stuff, try hiring a young professional to help you win friends and influence people online.
Of course, youth is no substitute for competence. Therefore, if you do hire a community manager, onboard them properly. Brief them on your corporate history, vision, and values. And give them specific protocols and direction to follow on your brand’s tone and manner.
Finally, let’s bring all of our thoughts and tips together:
- Social media provides a great advertising opportunity for small businesses
- Set up a company profile at LinkedIn then encourage your team to use the network
- Explore channels like Facebook, Pinterest, YouTube, Snapchat, Twitter & Instagram
- Try to tell your story visually, ideally with your own photos, videos, messages, etc.
- Amplify your efforts with paid digital advertising and/or community management
- Consider getting help from young professionals, for whom social media comes easy
- If you hire a community manager, brief them properly on your company, brand, etc.
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