A goal for any small business owner is to reach as many potential customers as possible, while spending the smallest amount of money. Small businesses operate on a tight budget, and they typically can't afford to run expensive ad campaigns. They have to make sure they are getting their money's worth whenever they spend it, or they run the risk of the business failing.
Luckily, over the past decade or so, social media exploded. These online tools are an excellent resource for small businesses when used correctly. They provide some amazing benefits such as:
- They're free. Most social media sites allow you to sign up and use their services at entirely no cost. It isn't until you expand and grow your marketing efforts that you might choose to spend money on social media.
- They can reach millions of people. Practically everyone has either a Facebook or Twitter account these days. By creating a presence on these sites for your business, you are going right where your customers are, and giving yourself a wide pool to reach out to.
- They are easy to use. Social media sites are fairly easy to get started with, and you don't need any advanced computer training or marketing knowledge in order to make them effective.
With all these benefits, you can see why small businesses choose to turn to social media. However, if you are going to go this route, you want to make sure you are doing everything you can to make it effective. By using social media sites the right way, you get a leg up over your competition, and are more likely to bring in customers and then keep them.
First, when you sign up for any social media site - whether it be Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or something else - be sure to fill out your profile completely. This means adding pictures, a description of your business, and a link back to your website. This social media account will be part of the face your business presents to the world, so make it look good.
Next, social media is all about sharing information. When you create social media accounts, be sure you are using them to promote valuable information to the people who connect with you online. For example, if you run a bakery, you could write a blog post about how to make the perfect cupcake. You could then share this with your online following, and draw them into your website. You could also share information from other websites, as this will help to build up your credibility and show your social media account is not all about you.
Besides sharing information, you also want to interact on social media. Follow other accounts, respond to comments, and ask questions to your followers. People want to know there is a friendly person behind the business, and engaging with your audience is one way to do this.
Finally, make sure you integrate your website with your social media accounts. Just like you linked to your website on social media, you should also link to these accounts right on your website. This will make it easier for people to connect with you, and help you to increase your follower total.
Get Started With Social Media Today
The goal of social media is to attract as many people as you can towards your business. By providing people with valuable information and engaging with them, you give potential customers a great reason to follow your social media accounts. This in turn will lead to an increase in exposure for your company, and hopefully that results in more sales. Best of all, this entire process is free to do, so you're not spending a single dollar on advertising, only your time.
To learn more about the benefits of social media for your small business, or some tips on how to get started, please feel free to contact us at any time.