Social media is now a part of our daily lives, which means that if you are a smart marketer you are leveraging it for business. However, all too many businesses make mistakes once they enter the social media space. This is mostly a result of not really understanding the medium and not knowing what to do once they get there. It’s easy to sign up for an account but once that’s completed there’s often a “Now what?” kind of fear. Many businesses look to see what other businesses are doing in social media and then develop their own campaign to match. What they don’t realize is that trying to do what the other guys are doing is one of the worst mistakes that they can make.
The right way to use social media for business depends on many factors including target audience and business size. Perhaps the most important factor to consider is the nature of the business. Social media efforts should be in line with the brand image and reputation and all other marketing efforts, both online and offline. There are plenty of social media tactics and tools that can be used for brand pages, but that doesn’t mean that you need to use them all. It’s very likely that not every function of social media is applicable to the needs of your business. Doing it all or doing too much can lead to confusion, distraction, and possibly even frustration of followers.
Some of the popular social media strategies for businesses are to hold contests, promote special deals and coupons, and encourage fan and follower check-ins. For local businesses and B2C businesses, these strategies are great for raising awareness and encouraging social participation and engagement. However, these strategies may not make sense for a company in the B2B services industry. Every social media strategy should be unique.
The key to developing the right social media strategy that works for your business is to do some research and plan ahead, instead of jumping in and figuring it out as you go along. This all starts with deciding who will manage the campaign. Obviously, a small business probably doesn’t have the resources to outsource the work. This isn’t a bad thing. After all, the people already working at the business, especially the business owner, know it best. For a larger corporation, there may be more than one person involved in the social media strategy. If this is the case, they all need to be on the same page from the start.
Social media is a great tool for building a brand and it now has an impact on SEO. However, for all businesses it’s important to remember that a social media page shouldn’t be the end point of interaction. It’s important to get followers to click over to the actual brand website in order for them to take action.