As a small business owner, keeping on top of social media trends can feel like an impossible task. With everything else taking priority and demanding your attention, it’s hard to find the time to create meaningful conversations with people invested in your brand.
But, what are the tips and tricks you can utilise to deliver great social media posts? And, more importantly, will they benefit your business? We’ve created a list of 10 killer social media tactics for small businesses that are easy to implement and fun to do. Plus, we can stand by all of these tips as we’ve tried them ourselves.
Try them and let us know what you think @jnragency (see what we did there?)
1. Network offline to reap the benefits online
This tip is one we live by – whenever you network IRL, make sure you translate that relationship to online. Whether you’re at an event and you follow the speaker, or you’re given a business card with a social handle on it, be sure to translate your interaction to social media.
Here are just some of the ways you can do this yourself:
- Quote someone at a conference and @ them in the message.
- Mention you met up with someone in real life on Twitter and @ them.
- Take a group shot and tag everyone in the photo – many birds, one stone.
- Say you’re looking forward to hosting a client and tag them in a message. This helps to build buzz around your meetup with little effort.
Here I am, @ruthhartnoll, doing just that:
SUCH a great evening of food @SKAUSliverpool. Oysters followed by the most divine steak I’ve ever eaten. Top marks lads. Everyone go and try their food and #supportlocalBusiness doggies welcome too! 👊💥🐶🐶 pic.twitter.com/81gUGT6Nny
— Ruth Hartnoll ✏ (@RuthHartnoll) May 12, 2018
2. Set aside time each week just to engage with your followers
This is a great piece of advice we’ve actually stolen from @easyasvat. After recording a podcast episode with her recently, she said the best way she kept on top of her social media engagement was to put her out of office on and have two hours a week where she engaged with followers on her social channels. From commenting on bloggers she followed to responding to questions fans had asked her, Easy as VAT swears by making the time for a portion of your week so you don’t feel overwhelmed ALL of the time. Bite-size engagement for the win.
Here’s an example from the pro herself:
Mine has been retail > ecomms advisor > HR admin > accountant + project manager > financial coach 😅 and writing chugging alongside every one of them in some way 📝 https://t.co/S2wZklf7Qg
— Julia Day (@easyasvat) May 14, 2018
3. Use Canva to create quick, free media assets
We’ve long been fans of Canva, but it really comes into its own when you’re making a lot of social media content. There are templates for each social channel as well as the chance for you to upload your own assets and customise your posts however you want. We’ve recently upgraded to the business version of the tool (Roughly £80) and we use it every single day. Once you set your brand colours and fonts it can take seconds to create professional looking social content.
Take a look:
4. Find your ideal customers and then engage with their social content
Got a brand you’d love to work with but you don’t want to approach them cold? Social media is a great way to break the ice and begin a conversation that can move offline. But only do this if your interaction is meaningful – try to sound human and speak to people as you would IRL.
— Ruth Hartnoll ✏ (@RuthHartnoll) May 8, 2018
5. Make sure you’re using business profiles
Sometimes it feels like the major platforms (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn) make updates and changes every week, but one update you should keep on top of is changing your profile so it’s set to a business page. This looks different for each platform, but the two with the most noticeable differences are Facebook and Instagram. When changed to the correct business profile, handy calls to action appear to encourage emails or sales enquiries:
6. Make your bio work as hard as possible
As we’re on the subject of profile optimisation, make sure your company bio is working as hard as it can be. Not only is this a great area to target keywords and relevant hashtags, it gives you chance to make it clear to followers who you are and what you’re about. Plus, it’s a good space to have fun.
Here’s an example from our own Twitter page:
This profile bio gets across lots of key information, including who our target customers are, where we are and what services we deliver. It’s jam-packed with info so we find the right followers and serve them the content most useful to them.
7. Cross promote your channels with an incentive
You may find that one of your channels is outperforming another. If you want to capitalise on one channel’s success, try cross promoting and offering an incentive to follow on the other channels.
Example incentives could include:
- Exclusive content “Follow us on Instagram to see behind the scenes content”
- Tweet that for every new Facebook page ‘like’ you receive you’ll send your new followers a small gift (great if you’re a product-based business)
- A return follow for any new page fans “Follow us and we’ll follow you back!”
8. Make it easy for followers to find key members of staff
Sometimes people are more willing to follow other people than a brand. To encourage follows across your networks, make sure your staff profiles are optimised to help find your brand page. By mentioning your brand in your profile you can tap into new followers who may not have found you otherwise. Do this for key members of staff with high profiles and you’re more likely to gain new, relevant followers naturally.
Here’s my Twitter profile as an example –
9. Share content from micro-influencers
Want to see real results to match your budget? Target micro influencers over influencers with huge followings. By catching brands early and building a meaningful relationship with their followers you’re more likely to get a higher engagement on the content you share with them. Equally, if you share their content, they’re more likely to engage with your brand and look upon any future engagement favourably.
10. Be vocal about any events you’re attending
One of the best places to get people to engage is at conferences and live events. Everyone is predisposed to boast about their time at an event and you’re in a room full of people taking part in the same conversation. Get online and shout about your attendance pre, during and after the event. It’s a chance for lots of quick, easy content.
Like this event we’re sponsoring this week: