5 Great Small Business Social Media Marketing Tips for 5 Premier Platforms

social media tips

Social media has come a long way in a short time. Six Degrees, the very first (and very defunct) social media platform, emerged in 1997 and shut down a mere four years later, boasting only about 3.5 million users at its peak. In 2002, Friendster (also now nothing more than a memory) far surpassed those numbers, garnering 100 million users at its peak.

By the time MySpace came along in 2003, social media had become far more than a fad; in fact, in 2006, MySpace edged out Google as the world’s most visited website.

Today, 69% of American adults (88% in the 18-29 age group) use at least one social media platform, and the average person has 7.1 social media accounts. Facebook alone has nearly 2.4 billion active monthly users.

This brief history lesson shows that social media probably isn’t going away anytime soon. It’s a train you need to jump on immediately — but if you’re new to the game, it can be difficult to know where to start.

The internet is full of tips on how to successfully market on social media — some better than others. But as a small business owner, you don’t want to wade through the trash to find the treasure. If you only have time to implement one tip per social media platform, here’s where to focus.

Facebook: Aim for the Correct Target

Facebook may have well more than 2 billion users, but sadly, most of them aren’t going to buy what you’re selling. Why waste your precious advertising dollars aiming at impossible targets?

Although no one short of Mark Zuckerberg and a few other higher-ups know the exact algorithms Facebook uses to decide who sees what, the site makes it easy to tailor your ads to a very specific market. All you have to do is paint a picture of your ideal buyer.

Is she a 35-year-old professional making over $75,000? Is he a retired Marine with an affinity for good Scotch living in Scottsdale? Are they iguana owners who just sent their only child off to college and are interested in international travel?

Facebook allows you to select your target audience based on a variety of factors — location, demographics, behaviors and more! Use it to your advantage to get your ads in front of the people most likely to act on them.

Twitter: Make Friends With Advanced Search

With close to 6,000 tweets sent per second, it’s no secret that Twitter operates at a much faster pace than Facebook. It’s a “here and then gone” society — blink and you’ll miss it.

That’s why learning how to use advanced search is so important. Instead of waiting around for people to reach out to you, you can go looking for them.

Search for words and phrases related to your small business and see what people are saying. An “Ugh, my AC is broken and it’s hot in here!” tweet can be a goldmine for an HVAC business; someone tweeting about their favorite sports team can be a conversation-starter if you deal in memorabilia.

Once you connect with your new Twitter friends, make sure you have a deal to offer them to sweeten the pot!

LinkedIn: Join Relevant Groups

LinkedIn isn’t quite as big for marketers as some of the other social media platforms we’ve discussed. That’s odd, because LinkedIn users have a much higher average household income than other sites, with 44% of users making over $75,000 a year, and more than 75% pulling in at least $50,000. More disposable cash on hand equals more opportunities to make a sale!

A savvy small business owner like yourself will want to join and participate in as many relevant LinkedIn Groups as possible. There, users engage in discussions and ask questions, putting you, as an expert in your field, in a great position to prove you know your stuff and score some solid connections and customers along the way!

Instagram: Partner With Influencers

Influencers (people with a large following who promote your products and services in exchange for some form of compensation, be it social shares, swag or cash) are huge on Instagram. If you’re going to try your hand at this marketing tactic, this is the place to do it.

The site makes it simple to find someone to partner with by way of the Influencer Dashboard, a tool that shows you which VIPs are generating the most buzz about a certain product, interest or industry.

One caveat about influencer marketing: You absolutely must be sure you’ve partnered with the best influencer for your individual brand, not just the one with the most followers. Paying someone to endorse your product is a waste of money if none of the people who follow them are even remotely interested in buying what you have to sell!

YouTube: Run Your Channel Like a TV Network

Your small business needs a YouTube presence. But if all you ever post are thinly veiled infomercials, you won’t amass much of an engaged following.

Instead, focus on creating TV-worthy content and stick to a predictable schedule. This may mean filming several episodes ahead of time so you can push them out at set times, much like the way the network television stations do.

At heart, YouTube is about entertainment, so be entertaining! Convey your message through different types of videos: how-to, behind the scenes, a-day-in-the-life. When you figure out how to market to people without them realize they’re being marketed to, you can make YouTube work for you!

Marketing on social media can be tough, regardless of which platform you choose. Using tried-and-true tips and strategies helps ensure that the end result will be worth it!

Are you feeling a bit anti-social? Mischa Communications can help! We’ll work behind the scenes to make sure your social media game is on point. Let’s talk!