First the good news: more and more small businesses are betting on social media like never before to increase customer engagement and sales. The bad news: Not all businesses are acquainted with the right social media tactics to make the most of it. Posting content randomly on any platform, and at any of the day, won’t give you the desired results. You need to chart out a real, rock-solid plan if you are really looking to cash in on social media strategies this year.
Here I walk you through 7 top social media best practices for your small business to follow this year.
#1. Focus on One Platform at a time
When you are just starting out on social media, you might be tempted to go all-in. That is, reach every new platform and reach out to followers of every kind. But this is a sure-fire recipe for failure.
According to social media experts, you need to adopt a more conservative approach to social media especially if you are just a beginner. It’s because it has been observed that several businesses, without weighing the pros and cons, are simply diving into different social media platforms and then fail to maintain their presence over a longer period of time.
Sure enough, you need to study new social media launches. But then, before leveraging it for your business, you need to assess their potential benefits before your marshal your mind, money and other resources.
#2. See your Posts from Audiences’ Lens
There’s no one-size-fits-all strategy when it comes to social media postings for small businesses. But then, it helps to post things from the audiences’ perspective. Simply put, the posts should be interesting and helpful for your target audience. So, before posting new content, see through the eyes of your audience and only post what they’d like to see.
#3. Use Social Shopping Technologies
Social commerce is growing really fast. Almost 70% of China’s Gen Z is into buying directly from social platforms. However, social buying is slow in North America. However, with evolving technologies young buyers are being drawn toward social commerce more and more.
Instagram’s shoppable posts feature being the case in point. This unique feature helps you shop without leaving the app. Not to mention, the platform has added a Shopping tab to its Explore Page.
Further, Facebook Marketplace is popular in 70 countries with more than 800 million users.
Even video marketing is drawing eyeballs on social media. Both in-stream buying plugins for Instagram and live-streaming shopping on WeChat have further entrenched social media into the customer journey. If you intend to improvise on your social media commerce, you can connect with some top social media companies, globally.
#4. Social Media Stories
Disappearing videos are growing 15 times faster than feed-based sharing. And why not? They are real, real-time and highly personal, which makes it users’ favorite feature.
Apparently, the trend is rubbing off on Facebook as well with stories overtaking feeds as the primary way to share incidents with family and friends. And, in fact, almost a billion users are using stories across various social media platforms – be it Whatsapp, Instagram, Facebook, Snapchat and more.
Simply put, social media is taking a quantum leap from being just a text-based platform, primarily designed for desktop, to a mobile-only network that captures real-time experiences.
Social media stories are thoroughly visual and can be consumed on the fly. And given that they disappear in 24-hours, you are free to experiment with it. So brands need to focus on this story trend more than anything else. The best part? Raw, realistic videos perform better than heavily edited videos.
#5. Lend a human touch with behind-the-scene images
Social media is all about relationships and building a deeper connection with your customers. One way of making your posts personal is to show behind-the-scenes images. For this, you could sometimes post a selfie image or use Facebook live to connect with customers on a one-to-one basis. If you are planning to attend a seminar or something, you could go live with Instagram or Facebook Stories.
#6. Boost your Top Performing Content as Paid Ads
As you know, social media is all about pay-to-play these days. So, it comes as no surprise that marketers are increasing their social media ad budgets and are rolling out more and more ads. In fact, Facebook eats up 23% of the U.S. total online ad spending.
The dark side of increasing ad cost and fleeting attention span of customers is that ROI is going downhill for advertisers.
This is where you can recycle top performing content as paid ads. Given that creating high- quality ads is a tedious and time-consuming job, you could repurpose your top performing organic content as paid ads.
This strategy might reap better results because you are taking advantage of content that has already been tested.
#7. Keep a Constant Eye on Customer Messages
If anything, social media is not a one-way street. As a company, you are not just meant to broadcast messages; you also need to respond to customer messages. Customers are using social media more and more to get in touch with brands. So you need to be there for them like clockwork and respond to all their questions. What’s more, you can even check out GoodFirms’ research report on Social Media Usage and Trends, 2019.
Can you think of any other social media best practices that could come in handy for small businesses? Go on and add them to the comment box below.
Author bio: This is Jennifer Warren, a Content Consultant with GoodFirms, a review and research platform for eCommerce development companies, digital marketing companies among many others. I enjoy humanizing technology through inspirational content, devouring best sellers, watching war movies, and running behind my sunshine sons.