The Ultimate Social Media Guide to Grow your Small Business

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The Ultimate Social Media Guide to Grow your Small Business

If you have been living in Geelong(Australia) long enough, you’d know that it’s not just Waterfront and Eastern Beach that lures populations into this city. The latest count of Businesses in Geelong has crossed the 10,000 bar.

A Statista survey found an astonishing social media user count worldwide(data in millions).

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According to Sensis, almost 8 in 10 Australians are on social media. The same survey states that 24% of small business in Australia are not on social media.

Geelong is currently a hub for startups and small businesses.

But if the world is on social media then you need to go there to make yourself heard!

 

A culinary business that’s doing all things right on social media is Plated.

Their Facebook page is currently flooded with 267,058 likes.

Plated is an ingredient and recipe service, providing people assistance with these assets to prepare five-star quality meals.

If you land on their Facebook page, a glance is enough for letting you know what they are all about.

Twitter, Instagram, YouTube they have covered it all under their delicious umbrella.

If you scroll through their Facebook page, you’ll find pages that are filled with life. Pictures of their happy customers and staff as well as flaunting the brilliant work that they do.

Plated - Facebook Page

Plated on Facebook

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Plated on YouTube

All their social media presence is linked. So that you won’t have trouble locating them anywhere else on the digital world.

They are the epitome of small business going big on social media.

This testifies to the fact that a strategised social media presence can do wonders for a small business.

There are over 16,000 businesses currently operating in Geelong. 96% of these businesses fall under the category of a small business. Source

If you are one of these and are looking to try your hand at social media to expand your presence in the digital world, this is your place!

Social media world

Source

I understand that small businesses don’t have the luxury to invest huge finances into advertising and marketing.

Social Media has provided the much required ‘smart’ platform that small businesses need for an extra boost.

According to Hubspot,  “Nearly half of those who spend at least six hours per week on social media efforts saw a benefit of reduced marketing expenses.”

The post also stated that 92% of all marketers indicated that their social media efforts had generated more exposure for their businesses.

Out of the numerous benefits of social media marketing, I have picked out the best ones that’ll erase all your doubts.

  • People are always drawn to authenticity provided by social media. According to a survey, ‘84% of people trust online reviews as much as a personal recommendation.’
  • It is a two-way channel, where you can interact with your potential customers instead of just giving out bland advertising memos to them.
  • Two way interactionSince it’s such an open system of marketing, it has an organically much wider reach. People often search for local businesses where they can build trust with relatability.

Bright local stats

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  • Customers always appreciate transparency in the businesses that interact with them. This transparency helps establish a strong foothold on loyalty among your clients.
  • Despite being customer oriented and enabling dynamic response, social media marketing does not compromise with masses.

Social media market cuts down huge loads out of your pocket. At the same time, it demands time investment. You can turn your small business into a brand on social media. All you need is a right strategy.

So let’s get started!

 

Know Your Audience

Every social media platform is specialised to serve a particular fetish.

‘Find the fetish to find the fiend.’

Integrating social media into your market strategy requires a close connection and knowledge of your audience.

It’s important to adopt flexible strategies that can bend according to the social media platform’s needs.
Here are some platform specific hacks along with demographic data set from Sprout Social.

YouTube

It is a psychological fact that videos are retained in the memory much more efficiently and for a longer duration than texts.

YouTube has an active user count of over 1 billion. Instead of just advertising in a dull wave on YouTube, you can create a channel for your small business.

The best part you ask?

It is free of cost!

Create your YouTube account here.

If you have created a channel, people won’t magically land on it. Create trailer videos with a short intro and Call-to-Action for subscribing.

YouTube trailer videosSource

Below is a step-by-step snippet tutorial to create trailer videos.

 

Set a channel trailer

Before you start: To set up a channel trailer, you have to first turn on channel customisation for the channel.

  1. Upload the video you want to be your channel trailer.
  2. Go to the channel you want to manage.
  3. Click the For new visitors tab. If you don’t see the “For new visitors” tab, follow these instructions to turn on channel customization for the channel.
  4. Click on Channel trailer.
  5. Choose the video by selecting its thumbnail or entering its URL.

For more details click here.

To get good viewership on YouTube, you need to upload videos that have the potential of hitching the audience that you need for your business. Make videos adept with

  • Stats
  • Testimonials
  • Tutorials

and other relevant content.

This content could include Q&A videos, behind the scenes of your company, etc.

Go to “Channel Settings” and create in-video programming. Doing this will create clickable thumbnails within your channel.

Enable in-video programming, go to:

  • Video Manager
  • Channel Settings
  • Upload (transparent) Watermarks

You can use “YouTube Live Events” feature to create professional broadcasts.

  • Video manager
  • Feature
  • Channel Settings
  • Scroll
  • Click on Live Events

Utilise “Fan Finder” feature where you can create YouTube ads to promote your channel to YouTube users.

One thing that is a must-have quality for every single video is that it should build trust. Create good videos that solve problems and tell people about the reliability of your company.

 

Facebook

Any social media marketing is incomplete without Facebook.

Facebook has rather deliberately been turned into an intelligent social media marketing platform. With 1.86 billion active users, you can’t ignore this social media giant.

Despite having a maximum bent towards a younger demographic, Facebook has users from all age groups.

Facebook demographics

Source

With this kind of diversity you need to strategise which audience you need to attract and build data accordingly.

Create a page on Facebook to build a brand of your company.

Facebook allows you to target your audience. For instance, if your business mostly finds its playground at Geelong (Australia) go ahead and advertise your page accordingly.

The “Insight” feature is a hidden feature on YouTube that allows you to take many important actions. To enable, go to:

Facebook Insights Dashboard

  • Click on the Green Button (on image below)
  • Enter Domain (link it to other admins as well)
  • Copy Meta Tag to Clipboard

image28Source

  • Open your website in HTML/CSS
  • Find Header Tag and place Meta Tag just above closing tag

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  • On your Facebook Page Click Insights

Now you can analyse your likes, shares, views and optimise it to the highest content.

Within the “Insight” feature you can also keep a tap on other pages’ top posts. For this scroll within the Insights click:

  • Click Add Pages
  • Type the Page name
  • Done

“Add a Button” to the top right corner of your page to optimise. 

To measure the effectiveness of your ads i.e., conversion measurement use Facebook Pixel.

 

Instagram

Instagram is one of the latest social media platforms in the market that developed 1 million users just after 3 months of its release in the app store.

The fetish here is – pictures.

With features like Instagram live video, stories, location, etc. this could be the marketing stage that you need to create a brand for yourself.

Follow people and like random pictures that are related to your content for gaining followers.

Use Iconosquare to analyse, manage and gain followers on your Instagram account. It can be utilised for tracking information with comments followers and likes for each post.

It enables you to:

  • View content and track your activity

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  • View comments and likes to see which posts work the most

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You can also analyse your growth history for maximum optimisation.

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source

 

Twitter

 

With over 313 million users Twitter can add up to a strong marketing platform. This space serves short and witty feeds. As compared to other platforms Twitter is slightly hard. This difficulty pays off as this platform is also a potent marketing space.

Twitter demographicsSource

Just like Instagram, Twitter has a live video feature.

The key to twitter popularity is content, without a doubt.

With AgoraPulse you can keep track of all your twitter activity so that you don’t miss any update.

image17Source

It allows campaign tracking, making it an all-in-all marketing tool. You can assign follow-ups and updates to specific managers, and with its On-duty feature, you can assign tasks with divided timings.

 

Use Tags & Hashtags

Twitter can take the personal credit for popularising Hashtags. When a word or phrase is attached with a hash (#) symbol to identify specific topics, these are called Hashtags. Using Hashtags in your post will increase its search-ability to a higher ratio. Hashtags are an excellent method of gaining followers for branding and advertising. You can use Hashtags on LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram, Google+, etc.

An Example of Branding hashtag is Kit Kat that uses #HAVEABREAK to market their product.

#HAVEABREAKSource

The primary purpose of a Hashtag is that it will categorise your data into relevant groups so that it becomes easier for users to find topics.

So, these can be used as a tool for gaining organic and genuine followers. While using Hashtags, the chances of your post being shared and re-posted also increases.

Today in 2017, social media marketing occupies a huge part of what we call digital marketing. When you set out to create a digital presence for your small business, there is a possibility that you’ll find others like yourself as well. Follow similar brands and tag them in your posts. If you hover over an image on one of Instagram’s popular accounts, you’ll find many Tags. Here is a picture of a literary account from Instagram.

Books and BroodingSource

Tagging is another way for increasing your visibility in a relevant crowd. Similar businesses that have already established a massive presence regarding followers and active involvement can be your ladder to clamber your way through. You can Tag people with a simple ‘@’ sign. On Twitter, both Hashtags and Tags can be used in tweets, re-tweets and comments. Almost all social media platforms can efficiently incorporate Tags and Hashtags.

 

Tools

You have a business to take care of, and it may not always be possible for you to dedicate hours every single day. Social media automation is a great saviour in such cases. You can manage all your social media accounts by using tools that are easily available. These social media automation tools help you schedule your posts, monitor posts, shares and links.

Tools can be handy when you are heading out to the field for the purpose of marketing. Here, I will be briefing you on 3 of the essential social media tools.

Buffer

Sign up for a free account on Buffer and connect all your social media accounts by clicking on the + symbol on the left-top.

image1Source

Once all your accounts are linked, schedule your posts.

BufferSource

You’ll need to fill up settings regarding time-zones and other details. You can also link your URL shortener to your Buffer account. Post this task, start writing and post your content.

BufferSource

Finally, Share!

Buffer

 

Hootsuite

You can use Hootsuite to create custom views of all the accounts you connect here.

The first, step, as usual, is to create an account on Hootsuite.

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Then go ahead and connect your multiple accounts and social networking here by clicking on “Add Social Network” and “Add Stream” simultaneously.

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Gain advanced features by signing up for the enterprise feature of Hootsuite.

Now you can quickly post on all these linked accounts by just a single click.

 

BuzzSumo

BuzzSumo is a similar tool but with some additional benefits.

BuzzSumo allows you to find the most shared content and important topics with just a few clicks.

All you need to do is go to “most shared” in the “Content research feature” and type your keyword. Now you can find the most shared Facebook post, identify most shared domains, etc.

BuzzsumoSource

The back-link option allows you to view most shared links that direct to an article/domain.

Next to content research is the “Influencers” option. Search for a topic here and find influencers who commonly share, tweet, etc. Target your audience after viewing Page Authority and Page Ranks for the URL of these influencers.

You can run a content analysis on what’s trending option on BuzzSumo.

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Share to be Shared

When it comes to social media marketing content curation is as important as content creation.

It is a common myth among novice social media marketers that sharing content from other accounts and pages like yours will deviate the audience.

But in reality, it is essential to share other relevant content (at least in the initial days) to establish your credentials.

Sharing other people’s genuinely good content builds a circle of trust among your followers.

Harpercollins and Penguin, publishing houses that have their Instagram account frequently share other accounts and their posts.

Here is a screenshot from one of HarperCollinsin’s post sharing another account mybookjacket.

My book jacket

Elle Australia can be found doing the same on Facebook, sharing Gourmet Traveller’s post.

Elle Australia

Source

 

Regular Baits!

Active engagement with regular baits is necessary for keeping your audience hooked.

When you have all the Tools and Tricks of social media marketing in your bag, it’s time to pick-up the next big “T,” i.e., Treats.

Deals & Discounts
One of the reasons why people follow social media accounts of brands and companies is to get good deals and discounts. Many Popular businesses do this to attract the audience.

Ginger and Smart, a women’s clothing brand based in Australia is using this bait right on its cover picture.

Ginger & smart

Domino’s Australia seems to be on the right track as well.

Dominos

 

Hot Topics
Keep an eye on what’s trending and the current public interest so that you can build your data accordingly. People like to be notified about the trends that are building up in the market. So, keep up with trends!

Contests and Giveaways
Another way to hook your audience to your social media account is to conduct regular Contests and Giveaways.
One of Australia’s leading natural health magazine, Wellbeing Magazine has a contest currently running on its Facebook page.

Wellbeing Magazine

A little hard work coupled with a little smart work can make the great change from ‘small’ to ‘big’ for your business.

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