Five Small Business Tips for Social Media

Five Small Business Tips for Social Media

Look Beyond The Obvious

My power word for my business this year is BUILD.

Of course, my word means the obvious definition of build – building my business and strengthening my focus of helping small business owners. But it actually means more to me than just that easy answer.

This year I’m taking my word beyond the obvious. I’m using my word BUILD to help my community build their businesses. It’s my hope that the programs and products I create will help build your social presences and build your online networks.

This year, I have plans to do things differently. We’re going to try out some new things and see what works to help you build your business. I want to go beyond the obvious expert’s advice. We’ll see how we can take these ideas a step further to grow your social media marketing.

Let’s kick this thing off by looking at these five social media tips for small businesses that you may not have seen before:

1. A/B Testing

If you find yourself struggling with your social media content, try doing an A/B testing program.

A/B testing is one of those marketing buzz words that consultants like throw around. If you don’t know what it means, here’s the best definition that I found:

You have two versions of an element (A and B) and a metric that defines success. To determine which version is better, you subject both versions to experimentation simultaneously. In the end, you measure which version was more successful and select that version for real-world use. (Smashing Magazine)

To run an A/B test for your social content, think about all the pieces and parts that go into your marketing message. Think about how you can change out any of the following elements to see if you get a different response from your fans:

  • The main image you’re using in the post
  • The headline of your post
  • Text copy in your post
  • Your call-to-action
  • The fonts you’re using in the image (some are harder to read)

The idea is to compare your options and test which elements in your message connect with your fans. One big thing to keep in mind if you do plan to run an A/B testing for your content – make sure that you set up clear measurable metrics like monitoring your site traffic, click-thrus and Facebook fan page Insights (track your reach and clicks).

2. Be Yourself

How many times are we going to read about how to be yourself in your social posts? Which is almost always followed by this phrase: show your personality and your voice in your social messages.

Yeah, yeah, yeah … I think we get that by now.

I want to you to think of ways to go beyond the ‘be yourself’ advice that most experts will write about in their posts. Let me share with you something I did when I was creating my Social Media Images that Convert online class’ content.

When I was working through how to produce the weekly learning videos for the ecourse, I went round and round about how to create the tutorial videos.

I thought about getting a professional company to videotape the training tips. And then I thought about doing that thing where a person just stands there and talks to you about the weekly lesson …but neither one of those video options felt like me.

One of my favorite things to do is personal 1:1 coaching with small business owners. I love the idea of just cutting out the fluff and getting right into the meat of what you’re here to learn.

So I produced the videos my way. I produced these videos like you’re having your own personal coaching session with me. Imagine us sitting next to each other and you’re watching what I’m doing on my laptop.

I love how the videos turned out! It was my opportunity to be myself and to show my true personality.

3. Use Images That Tell Your Company’s Story

It really comes to down to this: the majority of people are visual learners. When given a choice between reading a 10 page product guidebook or looking at a how-to-do-this picture, most people will take the graphic and then spend an hour trying to figure out which one is Part A and where is Slot C. That’s just how our minds work.

I want you to start thinking about the images you use to promote your business. Is there a way to creatively show someone using your service? Let them imagine themselves see how cool it is to use your stuff. Create images to help them envision how your products can solve their problems.

And here’s a little marketing secret about images: They help with the SEO of your website. When you include your keywords, company name and product or service in the alt tag of your images, your images will come up when someone searches for that topic.

Don’t forget to add your keywords as the name of your image when you post them on your Facebook fan page or pin them on Pinterest. Both of these sites have a graphic search function and your images will pop up with a link to your website.

4. Have a Content Strategy

This is one of those topics that I can write about for days. Having a plan for your weekly content postings will be one of those things that your small business just can’t do without.

Seriously, if you only have one free hour to do anything with your social media this week, use that time to work out your content strategy. Spend that time brainstorming and planning your post ideas.

For now, let’s just start with the basics. Think about the following questions to get you started on your content strategy:

  • What questions do you get all the time from your customers that you can answer in your social posts?
  • Do you know what your target market’s goals and interests are?
  • Are there other posts or pages in your site that you can link to in site? I’m a big believer in something called Internal Linking – linking to other posts or pages in your blog help you share more of your content with your readers.
  • Do you know where your audience hangs out and where you should be sharing your content?
  • Last but not the least – did you include a call-to-action in your posts?
5. Sales Promotions Does Not Equal More Followers

Running a sales promotion on your social sites may bring you a quick bump in traffic but it won’t turn them into loyal fans. There are many days when we have to wear our sales person hat to keep our business running but don’t let that spill over into your Facebook updates and tweets.

Ask yourself, why did my followers click on the Like button? I’m going to make a guess that it’s because they like your products or were happy with something you did for them with one of your services.

If they clicked on that follow button to get that deal, there’s probably a good chance that you won’t see their profile pic pop up in a conversation when you post a question. Those people will certainly get your numbers up but will they become an active fan who shares your content with their social world?

While I believe that as small business owners that you can and should promote your products and services in your social sites, sales shouldn’t be your top focus. Instead think about what attracts your connections to your company. What turns your fans into customers?

When you think about creating your social media messages, ask yourself this one question, “Why do my fans want to follow my company?”

Asking the right questions

While it’s good to ask ourselves questions to help work through our social media marketing plans, let’s make sure they’re right ones to get us the answers we need to create your social marketing messages.

Take your time to work through your answers to the questions I posted above. Most of your marketing messages have the same basic elements which you will tell and re-tell again.

Think about how you can turn your answers into your marketing message by writing out many versions. Eventually the words will speak to you and your voice of your business will eventually surface. And then use your marketing message as the foundation of your social posts.

PS What if you could find a way to grow your presence in your social sites? And what if it didn’t add hours to your already crazy day? What if it took just 30 minutes a few times a week?
Click here to download my 30 Minute Social Sessions workbook and I’ll give you steps you can do once or twice a week for 30 minutes to help you get your message heard by the people who want to buy your stuff.