Social media for business is a highly effective way of reaching people interested in your goods and services both locally and nationally.
That said, social media for business needs a clear strategy, a supply of quality content and someone with the time to manage it all.
This is where many smaller businesses like yours might struggle - finding the time to “do” social media.
So, here are our five top tips to help you make the most of your social media, with each tip taking just five minutes to complete.
Fill up that coffee mug, grab a cookie, and let’s make this happen!
1. Build up a post bank
One of the biggest issues around social media is knowing what to post. You know you need to do something, but your mind has gone blank. You’re pushed for time, so you either don’t post or put up a copy of something you did last week.
The 5 minute solution = create posts in advance
- For the first five minutes, simply write a list of five kinds of posts you’d like to do - news, special offers, fun quotes, product images, team profiles, etc.
- In the next five minutes you have, write a very short post on each topic.
- And in the next spare five minutes, find five photos to go with those posts. You now have a week’s worth of posts ready to roll.
2. No more ’sausage’ posting
You’ve seen it happen. A business shares loads of stuff or makes lots of posts - all on the same day. Then nothing for a week until someone remembers to do it again. We call that “sausage posting” - a string of meaty chunks but with precious little in between!
The 5 minute solution = schedule your posts
When you find the first item you want to Share in Facebook, for example, do it straight away. When you find the next, schedule it for tomorrow. Get one of the short posts you’ve written already (see above), add a photo, and schedule that for two days ahead. And so on. Within five minutes, you should be able to schedule three posts, covering three days ahead. Job done.
3. No more than two channels
This might sound restrictive, but it’s way better to be comfortably active on two social media channels, than struggle to manage several at a time. The two obvious candidates are Facebook and Twitter, but it does depend on where your customers hang out. In general, we’d say:
- A local business that’s got lots of products or things to photograph should be on Facebook and Instagram.
- A business selling paper or internet based services (i.e. anything that you can’t easy take a photo of, like accountancy services) might be better off with Facebook and Twitter.
The 5 minute solution = ‘pause’ your surplus accounts
Create a post that says something like “We’re signing off (social media channel name) for a while, but you can find all our latest news at (name of main social media channel here).” DO NOT DELETE THE ACCOUNT! You might want to revive it again, and it at least show your business is still active, rather than disappearing without trace. Once a month, allocate 5 minutes to put a new picture post on these paused accounts just to make sure they don’t get Unpublished automatically.
4. Respond to your followers
As your social media followers grow, they are going to add comments or send messages to your business via your social media accounts. Whatever else you do, make time to respond to them! Remember, they are prospective customers, and they’re looking to start a conversation.
The 5 minute solution = set up alerts
You can set your mobile phone or desktop PC to receive alerts from social media channels when someone makes a comment. The important part is NOT to leap and respond every time one of these pings up on your screen. Instead, put aside five minutes after lunch (always a good time) to respond systematically to comments and enquiries, and to say thank you for reviews.
5. Carpe diem
Almost anything that happens in your business that isn’t confidential or detrimental can be used in social media. The key is to take a picture or Share a story, and post it in the moment, (assuming you have authority to do so, of course). Otherwise, you’ll end up with a smart phone full of images and no posts because you got caught up in something else.
The 5 minute solution = do it now!
- Someone celebrating with a birthday cake in the office? Snap a picture on a mobile phone and post it.
- A new product being unboxed and pout on your shelves? Take a quick video and post that.
- Unusual wildlife outside your window, or a rainbow over your car park? Share just for the fun of it.
- Breaking news story on CNC that’s really pertinent to your business or your location? Share it pronto.
- Special shipment leaving the factory? Post and tag the recipient to let them know it’s on its way.
- You get the idea.
If that all seems like hard work, Akira Studio offer a cost-effective a baseline social media service that does most of the work for you. We write informative articles, post news stories, create images for posts if required, and seek out items of interest in your marketplace.
However, we still require your business to respond to enquiries and do the ‘now’ posts, for that personal touch and level of contact that ultimately converts followers into customers.