3 Steps to Maximize your Social Media PresenceBecause of the huge marketing potential of social media sites like Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn, they are a hit with entrepreneurs. The ability to reach billions of people across the world with your message is nothing short of tempting. If you can convert even a fraction of that, it is more than enough to increase your profit and build your brand effectively.

But the internet is not the field of dreams. It is not enough to create a social media account (or accounts) and sit back for the cash to come rolling in. In order to maximize social media, it takes a lot work and constant tweaking. So how do you effectively make use of social media sites to market your business? For the sake of this article, let us pretend that you are a business coach just hanging out your shingle.

Keep it updated – Whether you’re limited to Twitter’s 140 character limit or Facebook’s status content, you need to keep your social media updated with fresh content.

In this case you can post a link to an article about goal setting or your own article with a link to your website or business’ contact info. Your customers will appreciate the fact that you are updating your page and they can expect fresh content. This also gives them an idea that you can address their concerns through your social media accounts because of the frequency of your activity.

Post relevant content – In line with #1, update your page or account with relevant content. The Content Marketing Institute found the ideal length of an update suggests that shorter posts to social media are more likely to engage your audience. You can find their recommendations here.

So you don’t have to be a long-winded post about the perks of working with a business coach, but it can be a video or picture on topics relevant to your business. For example, I can post a video about setting goals. People are looking for information online, and one of the most effective ways to build brand is to develop your authority.

Offer incentives to frequent or share your content – Take advantage of the social media sites features which allow people to share other people’s content. If you want to build your brand effectively, offer incentives to people who’ll share your content. For example, you can create a contest on Facebook which will allow people to post their photos of themselves at work on your page and share it with their friends. The photos with the most number of LIKES will be the winner. This is just one of many promotional contests that you can do on social media sites. If you can get 100 people to participate in your contest, that’s 100 people who’ll share your social media page and their content. It’s a WIN-WIN situation for you and your customer.

Doing these three steps can take a lot of your time. Try to set aside 2 to 3 hours week of your time to manage your business’ social media accounts. If you can’t dedicate the time, consider outsourcing this task.

This article originally appeared on the HIT Virtual blog.