social

Top 10 Small Business Social Media Questions Answered

     1. What are the 1-2 social media platforms my small business should be using? Why?

It really depends on the business, but Facebook is always a good bet. Twitter can used as a good customer service-type resource. If your brand is product-based and very visual, Instagram is definitely a good platform to be on.

Of these three largest social media platforms, Facebook is a solid choice, especially since it shows up often in search pages.

     2. Does my small businesses need social media to stay relevant? Why?

Absolutely. Many people use social media not only to communicate, but for research. If your social media isn’t updated, many people assume you’re no longer in business. People search for mentions and reviews a lot of the time.

     3. What should I post on my social media channels?

Post content relevant to your brand and industry. Are you a dog groomer? Post content about DIY dog grooming tips, ways to prevent fleas/ticks/heartworm, funny videos and recipes you can make for your dogs. If you’re a CPA, post content about tax season, money dos and don’ts, and updates about your practice. A good rule of thumb is to post content that you know your audience will love.

     4. How often should I post?

It really depends on your brand and what you’ve been doing so far. If you have a larger audience, you can post more often. If you’re just starting out, start slow, but be consistent. A good place to start is 3-4 times a week and tweak that number as needed.

     5. Is there a best time to post? What time is it?

Again, it really depends on your brand. Generally, good times to post are between 8-10am and 7-9pm for Facebook, 12-2pm for LinkedIn, 1-3pm for Twitter and anywhere between 7-10pm for Instagram. Again, these are just averages. The best times to post vary widely by audience.

     6. How do I get more followers?

See #3. Post consistent content often, respond to your audience, and always be human.

     7. Why is it taking so long to get more followers? How can I grow a following faster?

Growing your followers takes time. Nothing happens overnight. You could buy followers, but that will actually do more harm than good. Give yourself at least 90 days to start seeing results. Listen to your Grandma - Good things come to those who wait.

     8. How many followers do I need to make X amount of sales?

This is a great question! While it would be totally ideal to attribute reaching X amount of followers to sales, it’s not quite that easy. Tying sales to a social media post is very difficult. Don’t use social media to make sales, instead, use social media to build awareness and make people want to buy from you.

     9. Isn’t social media just for online businesses? Should local businesses care about social media? If so, why?

Nope! Social media is for everyone! Big businesses, small businesses, start-ups, nonprofits and even personalities can benefit from social media. Local businesses should especially care about it. When utilized correctly, it’s a great way to reach the community and increase brand awareness.

     10. I’m working so hard to grow X platform, but my followers and/or engagement is decreasing - why?

It could be a number of things. You could be posting at inopportune times, you could be posting irrelevant copy, or you could come off as fake and boring. The best thing to do is test your content. Trial and error is a necessary process of building your social media following.

3 Ways Businesses Should Spring Clean Their Online Presence

When the sun starts shining a little more often and the flowers begin to bloom, many of us get into “spring cleaning” mode around our homes.

We get rid of any junk, we make necessary updates and we just sort of “polish” things from top to bottom.

Well, I’m here to tell you that, for small business owners, this springtime clean sweep shouldn’t only happen at home. It should also happen in your business.

And even if you work from home, or if your office is completely neat and tidy, chances are, there are some elements of your online presence that could use a little freshening up.

To be honest, things change so often online that we really should be looking to make necessary updates on a quarterly basis. But either way, doing a thorough spring cleaning to your online presence is a great place to start!

Here are 3 ways small businesses should spring clean their online presence in 2017:

Dust off the “welcome mat.”

I like to think of your “online welcome mat” as the the first step someone takes before walking through your front door (literally if you’re a local business -- if you’re an online business, it’s what they do before reaching out or engaging with your offers).

Essentially, it’s how people know how to contact you.

Of course, you should have this information on your site, and all of that should be accurate. But you should also make sure the information on your Google listing, your Facebook, your Instagram and other social media is thorough, seamless, consistent and up to date.

Surprisingly, I see tons of businesses with old addresses and phone numbers listed. I’ve even tried to contact a business before using the phone number listed on their site. only to discover that they don’t allow incoming calls! Seriously!?

Take some time to go through each page of your website and scour your social presence for information that needs updating.

Make sure you don’t miss anything by downloading my Online Presence Spring Cleaning Checklist, available here in my resource library.

Clean up the details and refresh the “decor."

Here we’re talking about all elements that make your business look clean, professional and captivating online.

Now is a great time to update images and other visual components of your branding, and to make sure it’s consistent everywhere online.

I’m giving you full permission to delete old, low-res or blurry photos (even if they have likes and comments), erase old tweets and take down links that are no longer relevant to your business or brand.

Additionally, check to see that you’re communicating clearly, consistently and accurately on your site, via email and on social media. There's no better time than now to refresh the message you’re sending to your online audience! It may seem obvious, but lots of businesses let this stuff sit on the back burner for way too long.
 

Connect with people who will appreciate your cleaned up space.

When you wrap up spring cleaning your home, your first thought probably isn’t to invite your rowdy neighbors over for a house party.

Take this same approach once you’ve put in the work to clean up your online presence. Connect with people who will appreciate the effort you’ve put in -- people who find your business and brand valuable.

The best way to attract the kind of online audience that will actually help you grow your business is to interact with current and prospective customers, as well as industry influencers and thought leaders on social media.

Of course, you also want to be putting out value-driven content that will resonate with the type audience you want to attract. Share helpful tips, ideas, entertaining videos -- anything that aligns with the mission of your business and brand.

If you’re unsure about what type of content you should post, simply ask yourself, “What does my ideal client/customer need to know or understand before deciding to do business with me.”

You can even share this information via video. And it doesn’t need to be fancy. You could go live on Facebook and share a few quick tips. This sort of content can grow your reach on social media and attract the right type of clients/customers in record time.

Spend a full day or two spring cleaning your online presence. I promise it will be time well-spent since you’re likely to see better results from your overall marketing efforts.

Download the Online Presence Spring Cleaning Checklist so that you don’t miss a single important step. Plus, I’ve even included a few bonus tips and organized the entire list so you know exactly what to do first.

Grab your free Checklist in my Resource Library here.

How Small Businesses Can Use Facebook To Boost SEO

Most business owners today understand there’s a benefit associated with showing up higher in Google search results. It puts your business in front of the people who are looking for the solutions you offer.

But one thing that a lot of small business owners don’t realize is that Google indexes more than just your website. For years now, social media profiles -- including Facebook Pages -- have been showing up in Google search results. Still, very few businesses actually complete and update their social media profiles with SEO in mind.

That said, small businesses across the board have a huge opportunity to start showing up higher in Google search results simply by putting a little extra effort into their social media presence.

In this post, I’ll cover some first steps you can talk to get started, by showing you how to improve your Facebook Page to boost SEO for you business.

Complete all the information on your Page.

It always shocks me when businesses don’t even bother to add key information to their social media profiles.

Even though an increasing number of small businesses are prioritizing social media as a key part of their marketing plans, I still stumble on business Facebook Pages with no address, no phone number and no website link.

It’s as if the owner just made a Page with the company name, and never touched it again.

These days, that’s a critical mistake. For reasons that go beyond burying your business further down on Google.

Neglecting your Page has the power to repel potential customers.

So, if your business’s Facebook Page is missing quite a bit of key information, or if you can’t remember the last time you put any effort at all into your Page, this article  is a great place to start. It covers six tips to help you set up/complete a professional and engaging Facebook Page.

Update your Facebook Page frequently.

In general, Google tends to favor frequent updates on all the sites, social profiles and other sources they index.

That’s just one reason why it doesn’t really benefit your business to have a Facebook Page simply sitting there.

People who discover your Page will notice if it hasn’t been updated in several months or even years.

To be honest, when I visit a Page that hasn’t updated in a really long time, I assume that company is out of business.

At a minimum, make an update to your Page weekly. “Updating” your page could include, for example, any of the following activities:

  • Posting or sharing high-quality content your customers would find valuable
  • Engaging with (liking/responding to) recent comments on any of your previous posts
  • Engaging with people who have posted to your page or reviewed your business
  • Responding to messages
  • Updating profile information if necessary
  • Adding upcoming company events visitors could attend (special sales, etc.)
  • Updating your profile or cover photo

Post consistently.

To truly improve SEO with Facebook, consistency is key!

When you first get started on social media, it takes time to grow your audience and increase engagement. Similarly, you shouldn’t expect overnight results when it comes to using Facebook to improve your SEO.

Schedule some time each week to post and share content. Stick with it for several months. If you follow the other recommendations in this post, your consistent efforts WILL pay off.

If you’re struggling to stay consistent, consider hiring someone who can help you keep up with your business's social media efforts. Click here to learn how to hire a social media professional who can save you time, reduce your stress and help you reach your most important online marketing goals.

Post quality content.

Increasingly, Facebook Pages and posts with high engagement (aka likes, shares, comments and reactions) get more online visibility.

Because of this, it’s important to prioritize posting content that your audience will value.

One way to increase engagement is to create 80% of your posts with intent to entertain, inspire, educate or emotionally connect with your target audience.

If you want to know more about why quality content is more likely to boost your SEO, this article dives into the details without getting TOO technical.

In the above example, you can see how social sharing helps you build links and boost visibility.

This impacts click-through rates, website traffic, and bounce rates.  All of these are important search ranking factors.

A lot of factors influence search rankings, but the most most valuable thing to take away is the importance of posting quality content that aligns with your mission, and connects with your target audience.

Do you have additional questions about using Facebook to boost SEO for your business?

Share your questions in the comments below or check out my resource library for a range of freebies to help your business see success with social media and online marketing.