Here at Square Media we try our very best to engage with our clients on social media but we often get asked “What’s it all about?” or “Should I bother?”….
Well… Social Media provides you with the ability to communicate and share ideas directly with your customers. But, like all forms of communication there are etiquettes to be followed, expectations from your customers and things that you always (or never) do. Here are some of our Do’s & Don’ts that we would advise you consider:
Firstly, DO use Social Media
Right, this doesn’t mean going ‘gun-ho’ into creating more accounts than you can shake a stick at. If you do that you will soon run out of steam and feel the weight of managing all of those accounts stacking up against you. Sure, this might be manageable for larger corporations (even if they do have their own bad habit’s) but for small business owners this just isn’t going to work.
Actively seek out the Social Media platforms that work for your business and your market. Make a decision on two or three that you are committed to using – Now breathe, and create your new account – With care!
DO make a schedule
This might sound tedious and pointless, and in some ways you are right.. but for those of you out there that haven’t had Social Media already engrained into your minds, it is very easy to wander off and forget your Social Media “flag poles” are still there. After all, put yourself in the customers point of view, who stumbles across your profile only to find you haven’t updated it since the dawn of time; What does that say about your business?
DONT stick to the schedule
Now this might sound very counter-intuitive, but now you have started using the schedule and have got used to the regularity of posting content at precisely 4 minutes past 12, every other working day (except bank holidays), throw it away. This is just not how social media works.
It’s reactive and responsive to everything from the weather, politics, sport, society, and the media. Sure, your schedule was helpful in the early days, but now you are used to it, try posting content regularly, but at different times of the day and at different frequencies throughout the week.
DO make content relevant.
Leading on my previous point.. One of the major reasons for avoiding a schedule is this often (in fact in almost all cases I’ve seen) results in dull, boring and repetitive content – most of which is sales orientated. It’s great that you have a promotion going on at the moment, but daily reminders that have been copied and pasted are just going to annoy your customers.
Have a think about my previous point regarding Social Media being reactive. Take in what’s going on around you, in the office, on the news, and in articles, posts, blogs etc. Don’t you think some of that stuff might be relevant to your customers? Share your knowledge, news and points of view – Don’t make it too personal though.. This is about your business, not your “rather stressful commute to the office this morning.”
DO keep a look out for your customers trying to engage with you.
Across Social Media there are various methods such as tagging, direct posts, messages etc. that will allow your customers to communicate with you. Have a process in place for dealing with these. Some will be requests for quotes, some will be questions about your business and some might even be complaints. Embrace them and ensure you monitor your accounts for such activity. Always reply to your customers and deal with them as if they have just sent you a letter, email or given you a call.
DON’T expect it to “happen overnight”.
It just won’t. Building a presence on Social Media doesn’t always prove profitable for every business, nor does having a presence guarantee any new business. The trouble is, your competitors are probably doing it and your customers are able to engage with them very easily. Your customers are also on there, talking about your business, sharing feedback and discussing your business… Don’t you want to hear what they have to say?
Social Media is here to stay and although it is constantly evolving, it is imperative that every new or established business embraces technology and the benefits that do come with it.
DO try to enjoy it.
Social Media is exciting. It’s a tool that allows instant communication between brands and customers that’s never been possible before. See it as an open doorway to more business with your customers clambering outside to get your attention. Post relevant content, keep your profiles up to date, and don’t be afraid to share your businesses opinions, news and ideas.
Thanks for taking the time to read our thoughts, views and opinions on Social Media for small businesses. If you would like to speak with us to discuss your Social Media presence, please do not hesitate to get in touch.
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