A good digital marketing strategy includes a presence for your business on social media. Social media is the networking event that never ends, and it has immense benefits for your business.
For the social media newbie, it can seem like a daunting task to get started, even though you know that your internet marketing strategy needs it to be successful. We’ve asked several social media pros for their best newbie social media tip, and we have some great advice for you.
But there is one tip that is most important for you to remember even before you sign up for your first business profile on a social media platform – social media is about your audience.
You need to know who they are and where they are if you want to be successful on social media. Do research ahead of time in order to find the right social media channels for your message and business goals.
When it comes to the nitty-gritty, these social media pros have some great tips on general social media management, and advice for particular platforms on everything from Twitter to Instagram.
Social Media Tips for Business Newbies:
Pay Attention to Detail
As the buzz around social media continues to roar, it’s easy to get caught up in the hype. But marketers need to ensure that the communication channels they choose (either online or off) are channels that will reach their desired target audiences at a place and time when they’re most amenable to the messages that are being sent. Everyone is *not* actively engaged in social media as Pew’s latest Social Media Update illustrates; further, some channels are not frequently regularly by certain segments of the population. In short, it pays to pay attention.
It pays to pay attention to the results of any marketing communication you’re undertaking as well. This is very easy, and relatively inexpensive, to do in the online environment. You can quickly tell what’s working, and what’s not, and make adjustments accordingly.
Linda Pophal is CEO of Strategic Communications. Linda is a marketing and communication strategist with expertise in strategic planning, B2B content marketing, PR/media relations, social media and SEO. Her background as a freelance business journalist, advertising copywriter and corporate communication professional provides the foundation for understanding how to produce and use high-quality, personalized content to inform, motivate and engage audiences.
This, coupled with expertise in online marketing, SEO and social media, serves as a foundation for working with clients to find the most cost effective combination of traditional and digital communication tactics to get the results they’re looking for. Linda is accredited through the American Marketing Association and is a member of the Association of Health Care Executives, the Society for Human Resource Management and the Association of Health Care Journalists.
It’s all about automation and staying relevant when it comes to successful social media for a business newbie. Save time by creating your social media ahead of time and having a system automatically deliver content. This will help keep you on track and focused. Knowing what is relevant is also key. Know your customers and target audience and give them something they are interested in.
Ben Cohen is an entrepreneur, small business owner and startup pro. BobCar Experiential Media is a marketing company that utilizes their patented, eco-friendly, interactive, mobile demonstration showrooms to feature client products on the streets and sidewalks of any targeted market.
BobCar started in 2006 as a mobile billboard designed for use in high-traffic areas, such as urban centers, where using a very large truck for brand promotion is often not practical or possible. The idea grew from mobile billboard to mobile kiosk and the BobCar Mobile Showroom came to life.
Use High Quality Visuals
Engage your audience with high quality visuals. Do you have an intern with excellent photography skills? Can you elevate your existing photos by using amateur-friendly tools/apps like Pixlr, Canva, or Word Swag? Can you identify a brand advocate (blogger, photographer, etc.) to take photos of your product out in the world and create lifestyle content? All of these approaches elevate and diversify your visual content, and keep it moving in an exciting, dynamic way for your audience.
Pay attention to trending news and novelty holidays like #NationalHighFiveDay so you can create a visual that taps into what people are excited about in the moment. Staying abreast of those trends can allow you the opportunity to post the perfect piece of visual content at the right time, which is often the simplest way to see your content soar. And if you have a particularly stellar piece of visual content, pin it to the top of your Facebook timeline or Twitter page. Pinning increases the performance of your post simply by increasing number of eyeballs on it, and serves as a nice introduction to first-time page visitors.
Vanessa Labi is a Digital Engagement Specialist for Creative California. Vanessa graduated from UCLA with a bachelor’s degree in English. She developed a career in online content curation by diving into copywriting, content management and column writing. She has found social media marketing to be the sweet spot of storytelling for its powerful pairing of the written word and compelling imagery.
She enjoys working with teams and managing her own blog, babe-sicle.com, and contributing to local magazines; all assist in her development of exciting ideas and concepts for clients. When she’s not buried in the virtual world of social media, Vanessa is dancing in her record room, out seeing live music, or seeking that next elusive vintage clothing find.
When it comes to sharing and promoting your content, use Reddit. Most business owners are quick to put blog posts and infographics on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn, but they completely neglect this incredible resource. Reddit, known as “The Front Page of The Internet”, has thousands of different verticals (called “subreddits”). Find the one that’s best suited for your industry, and post your content there. Posting on Reddit can drive traffic to your site and provide honest, unfiltered feedback about your content.
Kat Haselkorn is a content strategist and new media manager with Go Fish Digital.
Go Fish Digital is an award-winning, full-service digital agency located just outside of Washington, DC.
A lifelong DC resident, you can find her tweeting about millennial life and brand strategy as @KatGoFish.
Content is King
Brands must publish in today’s message-heavy, media-centric society. And the saying, “content is king” is more true today than it was five years ago. For B2B companies to leverage social media to drive business, they need act as a media entity. They need to create content that’s strategic and produces a dialogue with their audiences.
To stay on top of this effort, one of the easiest things to do is to leverage tools like Feedly or Flipboard to create content streams that become fodder for social media content. These platforms allow content creators to cut through the clutter. Finding, creating and sharing content can be overwhelming and time consuming, but having good, reliable resources will make the job easier in distributing content that matters and is business-relevant.
Don Martelli is VP of Digital Integration at Schneider Associates. As Vice President and Director of Digital Integration, Don is responsible for crafting multi-faceted communications and digital strategies that increase a client’s brand awareness and audience engagement.
Working closely with the core agency practice areas of Consumer, Corporate and Public Affairs, Don leads a team that integrates brand insights across all communication mediums, bringing strategies to life in an interactive world.
The key to updating social media is to do it regularly – a “dead”profile can be even worse than a nonexistent one. You always want to make sure your profiles have content relevant to your line of work and your customers. While puppy pics may be cute, they’re not why people follow your pizza shop or accounting firm. A content curation tool can help with both problems – you’ll find lots of content to keep your profiles fresh, and you’ll know that what you’re sharing is relevant to what you do.
Jasmine Davis is the Client Engagement Manager at Community Elf.
Community Elf is a content marketing firm in Pittsburgh.
Her clients include major healthcare brands, consumer products, and
Don’t Flood Your Follower’s Feed
Part of a good social media strategy is consistently showing up. That can be difficult for a small business owner managing social media in pockets of found time. What you DON’T want to do is flood your timelines with a bunch of posts at once. It’s annoying. Buffer can help you with that. Buffer is a free to cheap tool that will automatically post your updates on a predetermined schedule. This allows you post regularly at times when your customers and clients are online rather than just when you have time to manage it. Don’t forget to monitor your accounts for interactions. That’s why it’s called “social” media.
Laura Nunemaker has 13+ years experience in email marketing, social media and content development.
Former retail bakery owner.
Loves cycling & scuba diving. Vegan. Cat magnet.
Have A Complete Profile
The top social hack is filling out all the information in your social media profiles. By filling out your address, hours of operation, a short bio and link to your website, you are clearly communicating your business purpose and where they can find more information. It’s simple but often overlooked. Before you start sharing content or creating your own, make sure you’ve laid out all the basic information of your business to your audience. By filling out the basic information, you optimize your social media profiles for the search engines on Google and on the platform itself.
Ashley Cisneros Mejia is a co-founder of Chatter Buzz Media.
She is a former newspaper reporter, magazine editor, technical writer, marketing and PR practitioner.
Ashley’s work has appeared in *USA Today, the Chicago Tribune,* and the *Los Angeles Times,* among other publications.
*UNITY Journalists* awarded Ashley a $10,000 business grant as a winner of its New U start-up competition.
Don’t Publish the Same Content Everywhere
One of the most common mistakes made by companies which start using social media for business is publishing the same content in all trier channels. They seem to forget that a funny video of – let’s say -a dog playing piano, will have different response on Facebook and on LinkedIn, which is primarily used to establish business contacts. Type of content should be adjusted individually for each channel, because each of them is governed by somewhat different rules. Yes, it requires more effort but it is worth the struggle because you can reach many different target groups.
Agnieszka Idzik is PR and Communications Manager of SALESmanago Marketing Automation,
She is CEO of Go Public PR agency
Also an ex-journalist.
She specializes in personal branding and social media campaigns.
Hashtag Research is Necessary
To help grow your social media following on Instagram, locate the most popular relevant hashtags for your business’ vertical. Type in one relevant hashtag (i.e. #tech) into the Search field, and see what the next 10 popular related hashtags are (i.e. #techstartup). Then, type these out in your smartphone’s Notepad so you can easily copy/paste them into the caption. Bonus: Copy/Paste them into the Comment field of old posts to bring them “back to life” that day. People searching that particular hashtag will stumble upon your older–but still relevant–content.
Meagan Nordmann, 27, is the Digital Marketing lead for @Pay.
@Pay is an email payments technology.
Her personally branded Twitter page, @MegNordmann, has 18K Followers.
They are interested in social media marketing news.
If It’s Not Working, Drop it
Jumping onto every social media platform is not the right way to approach social media. Too often, this is the approach that many business owners take. The problem is that creating more social profiles could possibly help you reach a larger audience – but it will not help you reach the right audience.
If you find yourself spending time nurturing a social media profile, trying to grow an audience, and leveraging the content you worked hard to create for a social platform that’s not getting you any traction, drop it. Spending your time or budget on a social channel that isn’t providing you with a quality audience is not worth it in the end. Not every social media platform fits every business.
Megan Morreale is a digital marketing expert based in the greater New York City Area. She specializes in technology, and has worked on social media, content marketing and public relations campaigns for businesses of all size.
Currently, Megan works as an Associate Account Executive for Springboard PR.
She does freelance work in her spare time, and can often be found under a tree on a sunny day with a glass of iced tea and a good book.
Beware the Direct Message
Most social media platforms allow you some sort of option to direct message a contact – meaning you can message them without the general public seeing your interaction. If you’re using social media as a personality, this can be a great tactic for making connections with new people.
As a brand, you should beware the direct message. This is for a few reasons; you can always tell when direct message are automated, you have just alerted your potential new audience member to the fact that you are only using social media for sales purposes (which no one likes), and it is very rare that users respond to these messages, making them – more often than not – not worth your time.
Amanda Erdmann is a Digital Project Manager for Creative Click Media, a leading digital marketing and internet marketing agency in New Jersey. Amanda specializes in social media, web content management and design, and video marketing.
She is an expert in the building and nurturing of large internet audiences. When she’s not working, you can find her running somewhere on the Jersey Shore.
A few select social media experts provided us with tips on a specific social media platform. Check out some of their advice below for running your own Twitter, LinkedIn or Facebook profiles to help grow your business online.
Follow People Strategically on Twitter
My top social media hack works great for building relevant followers on Twitter. People often follow back relevant profiles so simply use Follower Wonk to search profiles keywords that relate to your market and follow the listed profiles. These can be geographically constrained if your business operates locally. You can even stalk prospective customers by searching for “cto” or “marketing manager” and using Twitter lists, jump in on any relevant conversations or just have a chum up talking about the latest football news to get your brand on their radar.
Mark Rushworth is Head of Digital Marketing at Blue Logic Digital.
He is a professional with over 15 years’ experience working both in house and agency side.
He has successfully designed and deployed social media campaigns for brands.
Those include Morrisons Supermarkets and Boost Juice Bars.
Take advantage of LinkedIn Recommendations
Word of Mouth recommendations exist EVEN online. Second in line to experience, is the recommendations section of your Linkedin Profile. This builds credibility amongst all who may come and visit your profile. But it’s usually not given unless asked for, so you must be proactive in getting it from those who could recommend your services in the future. Also, remember it’s not the quantity it’s the quality, it is much better to receive a well-crafted recommendation from your peer, than a few words from a higher lever director/C-Suite executive.
Natalie is the Founder and President of the Digital Marketing Agency, Social Splash Guru. She also is a Hootsuite™ Ambassador and Google Partner and remains an active participant as a Subject Matter Expert in Digital Marketing. She was also featured in Zazzle Media’s Article, “Expert Tips for Impactful Content Distribution.”
She holds both a Bachelor of Arts (BA) in Humanities (Spanish Studies) and a Master of Business Administration (MBA) in Global Marketing from Georgian Court University.
She is also MILSPRAY’s Digital Marketing Manager. Adis began her career at MILSPRAY as a Social Media Strategist and worked her way to a Digital Marketing Manager role.
Use Facebook Business Manager
This is one for Facebook, and critical for any business newbie who’s looking for a leg up on the competition. Most people, when approaching Facebook for the first time, manage their business pages and business advertising from their personal accounts. Intuitively, this makes sense – Facebook really doesn’t make it clear that another option exists. Enter Facebook Business Manager.
Facebook Business Manager is a platform that separates out your personal Facebook account from the work you do for a business. You still access this platform through your personal Facebook account, but the work you do on Facebook will no longer be attributed to your personal account – rather, it’s attributed to the business itself. It also integrates Facebook Ads Manager, and allows you to separate out the billing of that service from your personal account. It’s also a great way to provide internal team members with Facebook page access without requiring they provide any personal account information to people within the business. This is one of the ultimate Facebook power-user tools.
Alex DeLeon has spent nearly eight years in communications and digital strategy, and is currently the Social Media Account Manager for Portent, a digital agency in Seattle.
His clients have included everything from Fortune 500 companies like Microsoft and HP, all the way down to local startups looking for advice on how to best reach their customers. He has a particular fondness for technology brands, and has worked extensively with them in both public relations and social media management.
What do you think? Do you use any of these social media marketing tips? What’s working well for your business? Please share your comments below!
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