As a young person, you have the benefit of years of social media use under your belt, but there’s still a lot you can learn when it comes to using those social sites for your business. Branding your business and drawing in customers is a very different task than telling your friends on Facebook that you’re going to the movies. To get some traction for your business and grow it into something huge, use these tips for your social media strategy.
Clean up personal accounts
This is something you would do if you were getting a traditional job, and it’s just as important to do if you’re trying to be self-employed. You are part of your company’s brand, so unless you want to make your personal accounts totally private, it’s time to do some cleaning. Get rid of any drunken party pictures. Delete controversial or immature statuses. Highlight your business experience. Your personal profiles can be as useful to your business as your company accounts, so make sure they speak to the mission of your company.
Copy other businesses
Copying homework: not OK. Copying designs: bad idea. Copying social media strategies: go for it! Find companies that you admire and companies that have proven that their social media works, and look at what they’re doing. Gather some ideas of practices that have worked for them and even those that have failed, and see how you can apply them to your own business.
Dedicate a staff member to social media
If you’re just starting out (working out of your garage in a company where you are president, CEO, COO, and most everything else, for example), you probably can’t have a staff member dedicated to social media. But once you’ve got several people working for you, it’s time to take social media seriously and find an expert who can really use social media to your advantage. Even if they do a combination of social media, communications, and marketing tasks, but it’s important that you have someone trained in the area. It’s an investment that will pay off.
A social media strategy doesn’t mean anything if you don’t know how to see if it’s working; and a working, sustainable strategy involves measurable goals. Consider setting goals for your actions, such as five tweets, two Facebook posts, and 20 interactions a day, and also for the reaction you get. The reactions can be measured through tools like Google Analytics and Klout, for starters.
A big mistake many entrepreneurs make when they first step into the world of social media is to have a lot of one-sided conversations about their company. They use social media just to talk about their product and wonder why they aren’t seeing results. The key to social media is interaction. Join conversations about your industry to start building your reputation as an expert or as a reliable company. Respond to customers’ questions and ideas. Thank those who promote your material and respond in kind. A little interaction goes a long way in the social media world.
Don’t go overboard
Using a lot and variety of social media sites is ultimately a good idea, but only if you have the resources and expertise to use each effectively. When starting out and trying to get your feet in the social media business world, only use a few social media sites, maybe Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest. Figure out how to draw customers in through these mediums first before branching out to other sites. You won’t feel overwhelmed, will be able to keep up with interactions, and won’t spread yourself too thin.
Use social media regularly
Social media is worthless if you don’t use it regularly. Building a presence in the social media world requires being consistent in your updates and interactions. Set goals for daily updates, and don’t neglect them. If you continue to make posts or tweets, modify your strategy, and provide a good product or service, social media can make a big difference in your new business.
This is a guest post by Online Business Degree, a website committed to helping you get the most up-to-date and accurate information about getting an online degree in business.