Social Media Tips for Shoestring Entrepreneurs

shutterstock_185848994.jpgSocial media marketing is definitely a catchy phrase right now. With so many brands doing awesome things on social media, sometimes we forget about the little people.  I have written about the best practices of social media content marketingFacebook marketingsocial media customer service, and starting your New Year social media with a bang! But what about those young entrepreneurs that are just getting started on a shoestring budget? You don’t have time to waste and here are some things to keep in mind.

Choosing the right platform is crucial

You have a limited budget and time. You don’t want to waste all of your time and resources on Facebook if your target audience is on Twitter and LinkedIn. Having a Facebook page is great, but having 10,000 “likes” doesn’t necessarily translate into sales. Visual networks such as Instagram, Pinterest, and Facebook are best for consumer-facing businesses, but if you are trying to reach key executives, I suggest you focus on  Twitter and LinkedIn.  Forbes states that LinkedIn is the top social network for CEO’s.

Engage, engage, engage

Content, audience building, and conversation are the highlights of any strong social media plan. It is very important to deliver value before selling. Great ways to do this is to have content that educates, inspires and answers questions. For example, I usually recommend that 70% of your updates on Twitter be industry related third-party content. It is best practices to promote your own content just 30% of the time. Be sure to make lists of key industry leaders to easily retweet and tweet to them. Your followers will see this engagement and join in the conversation.

Use social sharing to maximise exposure

Having social sharing buttons on your company website or blog can really highlight your brand and get you a lot more exposure for free. We use WordPress and there are lots of social sharing plugins you can use on that platform. Most website developers know how to implement them on any platform. Add This to make a nice social sharing solution in free and pro packages, depending on your requirements. If you don’t have social sharing on your blog then the free version should be great to get you started.

Content planning is crucial  

It is getting clearer and clearer every day that social media marketing and content marketing are synonymous. Content marketing can obviously exist without social media, but your content marketing campaign is no longer complete unless you include social media. It is very important to stay on top of the key content marketing tips for the top social media sites.

Produce budgeted social media campaign’s

Low-budget marketing campaigns are most successful for ‘warm leads.’ With just 20 people on your email list, you can run a Facebook Custom Audience campaign. Select ‘Look Alike’ targeting to find more people who profile like your customers. Twitter Cards can be great to capture leads. Your users can click on your card to get your information, and you get contact info from their Twitter profile. The great thing about them is you only pay when you receive contact information for a potential lead.

Listen to get results

When your resources are limited, the need to know what’s working and not working for your social media strategy becomes more crucial than ever. Gaining insight into where and how your competitors are succeeding and struggling on social media, as well as conducting an audit of your own, is the best way to understand both your position in the market and your target audience. Social listening toolsare available for free to help you to carry out this analysis.

Shoot for quality and quantity

In every successful social media marketing strategy, it is smart to map your customer’s journey from a complete stranger to a devoted fan. Start by defining your ideal customers. Make the first move to engage them by following them on social media.  Work to earn their trust and deliver value via content and conversations, then your followers and fans will start to trust you and what you are selling. If you can devote time and effort to this strategy, you can sit back and watch the sales roll in!

I originally posted this article on Near Me. 

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