While I understand the importance and principles of effective social media marketing, it’s tricky staying on top of it all when you’re running your own business, and have lots of other tasks to juggle. The technology is changing all the time, and there never seem to be enough hours in the day to plan and schedule and engage with all the platforms and conversations. Even if, like me, you have a good grasp of how you could be using social media to its full advantage, it’s sometimes useful to get a fresh perspective and new ideas to push you to the next level.
For all these reasons I have recently started working with Hayley Embleton at Short Stop Social, who has been helping me with shifting my social media strategy up a gear.
There is such a wealth of talent in the field of social media marketing in Kent. So if you get to a point where you could do with some extra help, there are lots of people locally who can lend a hand. Personally, I have picked up lots of useful tips from experts such as Zoe Cairns who has been running the fantastic Get Social Kent events in partnership with the Kent Invicta Chamber of Commerce. I’m also grateful for advice from Lucy Hall at Social Day and have had good conversations with Dandelion Social, We Do Social and Live+Social amongst others.
For this blog post I have invited Hayley to share some tips on how you can manage your own social media presence more easily, to streamline your activity and make better use of your precious time.
Now, over to Hayley:
So, you have your mainstay social media platforms in place (usually Facebook, Twitter and perhaps one other like Instagram), you have a few followers (in the hundreds perhaps) and try where possible to update your profiles and network with clients, competitors and colleagues when you get a spare 5 minutes. You feel like you’ve got the bases covered but also feel like you could be doing more, that social media sometimes gets you added leads, some kudos for the work you do and maintains your working relationships but not that it’s a main source of generating business for your enterprise.
This is where the majority of my clients are at when they approach me with the idea of taking their social media marketing and strategy to the next level: they have a fair idea of what they need to be doing to take them where they want to be but the crucial factor (as well as the need for a few insider tips) is always time!
When you don’t have the systems and habits in place, updating, strategizing and scheduling social media can seem all-consuming and that’s before you’ve even thought about expanding your followers or engaging with your audience. Here are a few steps you can take towards getting a tidy ‘desk’ for your social media admin.
- Link your accounts – It seems simple enough but make sure that your facebook account links to your twitter (https://www.facebook.com/twitter) so that every time you post on your facebook business page it will automatically post on twitter. Having it this way round and not from twitter to facebook will also allow you to post beyond the standard 140 characters limit.
- Download apps to your phone to minimise your tasks and allow you to work on the move –
- Facebook, Twitter, Instagram – It may seem obvious but make sure you have the individual apps on your phone so that you can access them in the same way you would from your desktop.
- Hootsuite – A free account will allow you to schedule posts simultaneously to your twitter, facebook and Instagram accounts all at once. avHHaving this on your phone also allows you to share from other apps like facebook, so casually browsing your personal feeds could result in you stacking up a few business posts for the next few days just by chance.
- Flipboard – ‘Follow’ different news catagories linked to your business in order to minimise time searching for interesting articles and blogs to share.
- News apps (BBC, Buzzfeed, Huff Post) – Anything relevant to your business or your brand which may make your quest for interesting content less time intensive.
- Know your timings – Look at your analytics, think about when your clients, partners and stick to some set times for a certain period of time. It’s all trial and error, but just like with any other trial you need to have had a big enough specimen in order to accurately assess the impact so make a conviction and stick to it for a while. An infographic like this one can be helpful when thinking about how often and when to post (https://blog.bufferapp.com/how-often-post-social-media)
- Be regular! (In posting AND adding followers) – The number one way that people jeopardise the impact of their social media is by lacking consistency. Posting regularly will boost your algorithms making it more likely that your posts will be seen farther, wider and more regularly. Adding relevant followers on a daily basis means that you are more likely to come up as a suggested person to follow for others and in turn receive more follows. Just like with SEO these are sophisticated systems so it is possible for your to “over-post” and “over-follow” so don’t go crazy spamming your page or adding as many people as possible if they aren’t connected to your business or industry. It’s all about balance, being consistent, relevant and interesting is much more important than being frequent, widespread and non-specific.
Please let us know how you get on and be sure to tag us if you have any questions via Twitter or Facebook (@shortstopsocial) we’ll also be blogging next about our #21daysocialhabit so if you’d like to improve the quality of your social media marketing whilst reducing the amount of time you spend on line make sure you follow us!
If you want to discuss your overarching marketing strategy for the year ahead, and how your social media presence can play its part, then get in touch via the contact form at www.getfruitfulmarketing.com. Plus sign up to get free #FruitfulFriday emails with more tips and support like this.