Millions of people are perusing Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat, Pinterest, YouTube and the like every minute of every day. So, why wouldn’t you want your business to have a presence on these sites? The only question is, how do you do it the right way and where do you find the time?
Here 5 quick tips for easy and effective social media marketing for the entrepreneur on a budget:
- Time. In order to do anything correctly, you have to be able to invest the time it takes to learn the medium, the process, and how it best applies to you. Take a few hours to explore the various social media platforms and depending on what your business is, choose the one that best fits your needs. For example, if you’re a filmmaker, you would want to feature YouTube as your go-to social media platform. However, if you’re a model, then Instagram is probably for you. While stores might choose SnapChat to promote time-sensitive discounts. Once you understand the different perks of each network, it will be much easier to determine how to best apply it to your immediate and long-term goals.
- Listen. Social media is form of communicating with your customers, but in order to do that effectively, you have to be prepared to listen to what they are saying. When you’re first getting started, you might not have a lot of interaction, but that’s expected. Visit social networks that are run by your competitors or that have a similar business, and see what people are saying there. Chances are, you might even find a void that isn’t being filled, giving you an opportunity to launch your business to open and waiting arms.
- Automation. One of the key components of a successful social media marketing platform is consistency. However, since you are not a machine, it’s always advisable to use a tool that allows for easy automation. Apps like Buffer and Hootsuite let users schedule posts in advance, so if while fighting a bout with insomnia at 2am, you come up with a great idea for a post, you can put it into Buffer and schedule it to post later in the morning, when most people will actually be awake to see it.
- Engagement. Remember how I said that social media marketing is a form of communication? Well, that means that it has to be a two way street. So, when you post, that’s the equivalent of you saying something, which means that eventually, someone is going to answer back. However, there might be times when you see someone else’s post and instead of just reading and moving on, go ahead and write a comment or question. This will start up a conversation, and whether it leads to casual chatter, or a problem being solved, you will have gained more presence on social media, which is exactly what you need.
- Limits. Everyone has limits, and so do social media sites. It would be impossible and ineffective to be consistently present on every single social media site out there. That would be like trying to have a close relationship with all 500 of your Facebook friends. It’s neither practical nor possible. The best way to determine your limits is to either know who your target audience is and go to the social media platform they are most likely to use, or choose the social media site that best showcases your business or line of work, and use that one as an anchor for all the rest.
For many entrepreneurs, starting their own business is an exciting and busy time in their life. With so much to do, social media marketing either gets brushed aside or put on a to-do list somewhere near the bottom. In reality, social media marketing is one the most important things a business needs in order to succeed.