Thursday member spotlight: On Thursdays, we like to introduce you to a fellow myMarketing Cafe member. This might be through a guest blog post or by our sharing about a member and their business.
Today, allow me to introduce you to Sarah Laughran. Sarah joins us from the United Kingdom and recently contributed to the myMarketing Cafe Entrepreneur Mom project. You’ll find her great advice on slide 20. Sarah is the director of Inovision Research and Social Media. After graduating with a Business Studies degree and a Masters in Management and Marketing, she joined a market research company and took over management of their social media pages. In 2012, she founded her own company, which aids companies by starting them up on social media, helping them run their pages and providing training sessions. Take a look at Inovision’s website and their company blog for regular information on research and social media. And by all means, connect with Sarah! You’ll find her on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and Pinterest.
7 time-saving, budget-friendly social media tips for small businesses
You have social media pages, but don’t have the time or money to invest to make sure you are getting the best from them. Does this sound familiar? If you want to know how to use your time effectively, while getting the best results from your pages then read on for how to make the best of your social media with limited time and funds:
1. Focus on one or two platforms
It is a common misconception that you need to be on a lot of social media platforms, but this is not the case. You should only be on platforms where you can afford to invest the time. There is little point having a presence on a platform if you don’t update it with content, as it looks old and won’t give a good impression of your company.
2. Create content in advance
It takes less time to plan content in advance than to decide what you are going to post on your social media pages each day. If you decide what you are posting on the day, this can also mean that if you are in a rush, the quality of your content can drop and mistakes can be made. Sit down for a couple of hours and write a content plan for the whole month, then you don’t need to worry about it each day.
Advertising on social media is not as expensive as you might think. To grow your followers, think about making a Facebook or LinkedIn advert. They are very easy to set up, with step-by-step instructions and you can set yourself a budget for how much you want to spend per day. It also allows you to target very specifically, so your adverts are seen by the most appropriate people.
4. Keep an eye on your analytics
For Facebook this is easy as it shows on your homepage (if you have at least 30 ‘likes’). You can see who your main audience is, broken down by age, gender and location, and which of your posts had the greatest reach and engagement. Pinterest has also recently introduced an analytics page, but for Twitter, it’s a bit harder, and you need to use a tool. A particularly good free one is bit.ly as it tracks the links you post and shows how many people clicked on them. Another way to look at your best posts on Twitter is to see how many of your followers retweeted or favourite them.
5. Respond to followers
It is important to respond to your followers if they comment on your page or ask a question, and on social media, people expect the response to be quick. However, it wastes time if you are constantly checking your page. Make sure you set up your notifications so you are emailed every time there is some action on your page, meaning you only log on when necessary.
6. Schedule your posts
If you know you won’t have time to be on your social media pages all day, or you just don’t want to worry about them, you can schedule your posts on Facebook, and on Twitter using Tweetdeck or Hootsuite. This means you don’t have to worry about posting them at the right time or forgetting altogether.
7. Use hashtags
The hashtag originated on Twitter, but is now useable on LinkedIn, and Pinterest and soon on Facebook. Find out which hashtags are linked to your industry and use them when posting industry-related information. This will increase your coverage and ensure you turn up when someone searches for that hashtag. You can also create your own hashtags for your company or product and encourage customers to use it when talking about you. This makes it easier for you to track conversations surrounding your business.
Did you find these tips useful? Let us know in the comments below…