29 Mar LTFF Blog: 7 Social Media Tips for your Business
By Cori Ernst, Communications & Digital Media Coordinator
If you’re an entrepreneur, you’ve heard the mantra of the importance of social media for your business – probably more than once. But let’s face it – your time and budget are already stretched thin, so it’s likely that social media falls to the lowest level on the totem pole of your priorities. The reality is that social media IS crucial for the success and growth of your business, but that doesn’t mean it’s an easy beast to tackle.
As the communications and digital media coordinator for the Lobeck Taylor Family Foundation, I work with entrepreneurs on social media strategy and best practices. And guess what? You’re not the only one who feels lost in the realm of social media – everyone has been there. To help, here are seven tips for the overburdened entrepreneur for maximizing your social media:
- Establish realistic goals
- Where do you want your social media to be in sixth months? 1 year? Make sure your goals are realistic and specific to your business. For example, a realistic goal for a startup’s social media would be “establish my business as the startup-to-watch in Tulsa.”
- Once you’ve established your goals, create objectives to reach your goals and measure benchmarks to know if you are on track. If your goal is to be the startup to watch in Tulsa, then a potential objective could be to have 600 Tulsa-area followers after six months. The benchmark would then be to gain 100 followers every month to reach that objective. Note: these can be based on engagement, impressions, followers, reach, or whatever you deem a priority for your social media.
- Create relevant content
- Be consistent: While it’s important to post 2-3 times a week, many entrepreneurs don’t realize that they don’t have to spend time every single day on their social media. In fact, I have found that social media can be placed on the backburner and still be effective. The key is creating a social media calendar. A social media calendar allows you to schedule out your posts beforehand, plan posting series, and gather content in advance so you aren’t worrying about it everyday. You can spend every Monday scheduling posts for the week or just the first monday of every month. It’s entirely up to you! Click here for an example.
- Be creative: It’s important to diversify your content, but remain consistent with your branding and motif. Take your followers ‘behind the scenes’ of your business with a video, Instagram Story, or Facebook Live to let them get to know you while providing content that will catch your audience’s attention.
- Be Authentic: Things don’t have to be put together all of the time – people want to see the authentic YOU! Tell them about your struggles of starting a business and show them how you have grown.
- Analyze your competitors –What are businesses similar to yours doing well? What are they not doing well?
- Follow the 80/20 rule –Make sure approximately 80% of your posts are content your audience wants to see and is interested in, not promotional content. Too many promotional posts will cause your audience to tune you out, so try to keep them to roughly 20% of your posts. Posting a taco recipe would be an example of fun, relevant content. A promotional post would be asking your audience to come purchase your tacos. While promotion may be the ultimate goal of your social media, make sure you have plenty of relevant content to balance the promotional posts.
- Use eye catching graphics/videos –Photos and videos perform far better on Facebook. As a general rule, always add a photo to your post or turn information into a graphic, as this is much easier on the scrolling eyes than a post of just text. Note: always post your videos directly to Facebook – don’t link to another website, including YouTube, as this will not receive much organic reach.
- Engage with your audience –Reply to comments, respond to messages quickly, and listen to what your audience is asking for, whether directly or by observing content that performs well.
- Track your insights –Analytics show you what areas need improvement and what strategies work well for you. This is how you will know if you are reaching your goals! Insights can include number of followers, likes, comments, shares, impressions, etc.