3 Social Media Tips to Get You Started
Hashtags, emojis, tweets and Facebook pages. What is all this stuff and where do I even start?
Social Media can certainly be confusing. Especially with all the constant changes and new networks that keep coming out. Getting your content seen can be downright frustrating.
Luckily there are some easy to follow basic steps you can take to make things run a whole lot smoother.
Choose Your Social Media Network(s)
Start by researching where your customers are on social media. Are they more likely to be on the business-oriented LinkedIn or are you looking to target the younger demographics on Snapchat or Instagram?
To find out, simply ask your existing customers what channels they are using. You can do this with a survey which you can create with Survey Monkey or Google Forms. Both are helpful online tools.
If you are just starting and don’t have clients yet, take a look at your competition. See what networks they are using.
Once you know which platform your customers use, set up an account on that network. If your customers are spread out over multiple networks, pick the single best network and start there. Starting multiple accounts on the many social media platforms out there can be overwhelming and can spread you too thin as you try to create content for them all.
What to Talk About
This is a common problem I hear often: “I have no idea what to post on social media.”
Put yourself in your customer’s shoes. Think about the problems they are having. What solutions can you provide? For example a jeweller could share articles about how to store necklaces and bracelets; how to pack jewellery in a suitcase when travelling; or how to properly clean gold and silver.
Posting a video or photo works really well. If you are in need of stock photos there are many paid and free sites for photos. Check out my article about where to get free photos.
If you just post advertisements you will likely find yourself tuned out by many. People use social media to be social. Offer them valuable information as it relates to them, not you.
Identify and follow key people, groups and organizations in your region and in your industry. When they post on their social media channels be sure to like, comment and share their content. Sharing and commenting is a great way to put your name out there and get noticed. But be sure to share content that is relevant to your audience (customers) and to leave comments that add to the conversation. Generic comments like ‘great job’, ‘congratulations’ and ‘I agree’ have their place at times but won’t add much to the conversation or help get you remembered as someone who provides insight into a topic.
Like the old saying goes: “The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second best time is now.” Start by getting started. Do some research, set up one social media account (for now), think about what you want to say and reach out to others. If you are still unsure how to go about social media, there are benefits to working with a consultant or agency for social media help. Whatever road you choose to go down keep these two things in mind: patience and consistency. It can take time to create content, build a following and accomplish your goals. Keep at it. After a while all that hashtag, emoji and tweet talk will make sense.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Scott Trites is a Social Media Consultant and Owner of Knockout Social Media