How to Start Social Media Marketing

Social Media Marketing
Marketing your business online goes beyond having a well-designed and developed website. A comprehensive digital marketing plan needs to account for all channels from website to email to social media. Now many businesses are skeptical about social media—it’s difficult to justify the value of spending time and money on social media marketing. But think about this, in the traditional print world, social media is like a press release or news story. For example, say you own an automobile repair shop and want to let people know that you are offering a special “$10 off an oil change with a state inspection”. In the traditional sense, you might pay for a classified ad to promote your special and get more customers.  In the digital space, you could post about your special on social media and potentially reach thousands of customers (all for free).

Getting started with social media marketing can be intimidating, but let’s looks at easy tips to set up for success. First, choose what networks you want to be active on versus those networks that you want to monitor. We recommend that every business have the following main social media accounts: Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Google +. Why these networks? The combination of the social “Big Four” captures the majority of the key markets. Depending on your industry, we might also encourage other networks. For Simply Be You, our client and jewelry designer, we established accounts on Pinterest and Instagram to support the female shopping audience.

Set up your social media accounts:

  • Profile name = Business name
  • Profile URL = .com/businessnameindustry (for example .com/fivegreywebsites)
  • Profile Picture = Logo
  • Profile Information = About Us, Contact Us etc directly from your website
  • Cover Photo = an eye-catching image that describes your business or direction. Consider changing this seasonally to stay current.

One the most common mistakes with business social media is setting up profiles under personal accounts or settings. Always use the business equivalent, such as Facebook Pages versus the Facebook profile (personal). Keep the email address and login information consistent—use your and a standard password.

Once you have created your social media accounts, plan for your updates and frequency. A good rule of thumb is to try and post at least 3x per week using different content like pictures, links, or videos. The more you post—the better the results! If one post gets exposure to 500 people, then 3 posts could reach 1,500 people (for free!).  Social media marketing is about creating connections and engaging with customers online…and it can be fun!

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