Social media is a powerful tool, especially for small businesses. If you own a small business and wonder if social media can help you grow, you’re in luck! Social media marketing is a highly effective way to grow your business and foster loyal followers of your brand. In this post, we’ll discuss the specific benefits of social media, which platforms work best for small businesses, and which strategies to use.
Benefits of Social Media Marketing for Small Businesses
Using social media to market your business might seem a little intimidating, especially if you’re not one for social media yourself. But it can bring massive benefits to your business if done correctly.
1. Increases Brand Awareness
Marketing on social media helps draw attention to your brand. Instagram, Facebook, and Tiktok alone have two billion active users–each! By posting regularly and engaging with followers, you are automatically reaching more people than you would through content marketing and advertising alone.
2. Higher Social Media Presence Equates to Better SEO Rankings
Most marketers claim that the more active your brand is on social media, the more traffic your website will get. It makes sense–the more you market on social media, the more people you reach, and the more people will visit your website. Additionally, likes, comments, and shares increase your brand authority and boost your search engine rankings.
3. Boosts Customer Loyalty
As long as you engage with your followers in a positive way by replying to messages and comments, you are boosting your customer loyalty. Consumers want to buy from businesses they trust and relate to, and social media is one of the best ways to show your customers who you are as a brand.
Best Social Media Platforms for Small Businesses
While there are tons of social media platforms out there, you don’t need to have a presence on each one. In fact, doing so would probably stretch you way too thin, especially as a small business owner. Instead, choose one or two platforms that your target audience uses and stick to those. But out of TikTok, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat, LinkedIn, and Pinterest, how do you know which platform to pick? It all comes down to your target audience.
When it comes to choosing a social media platform, you need to choose based on which one your target demographic is using. Who are you targeting with your product marketing? Stay-at-home moms, single businessmen, or another group? Younger audiences are best reached through TikTok, while older audiences are best reached through Facebook. Facebook can be effective for other demographics as well, especially with the addition of shopping directly in the app. Instagram is still a powerful platform for businesses and arguably might be the best one for small businesses looking to grow.
Choosing a social media platform also depends on what type of business you have. Instagram and Facebook make it particularly challenging to market certain businesses, like cannabis or alcohol brands, so these types of businesses might want to take to Tiktok, Twitter, or YouTube for their social media marketing efforts.
Top Three Social Media Platforms for Small Businesses
1. Instagram. Reaches multiple demographics, has the best tagging system for user-generated content, in-app shop support, and is easy to connect with followers. Videos are growing in popularity on Instagram, competing with TikTok, but photos are still going strong. No need for high production value, all you need is a smartphone.
2. Facebook. Reaches a slightly older demographic, but user-generated content is still easy to share, and the app has lots of built-in support for businesses to succeed. You can share videos, photos, text posts, links to your website, and more.
3. TikTok. Fast growing platform that is strictly video-based, is used by a younger demographic, and is not quite as powerful for user-generated content. Once again, no high production value is needed to create videos that do well.
Proven Social Media Marketing Strategies
The following social media marketing strategies are widely implemented by small businesses because they’re super effective. Remember to stay true to your brand and be authentic when using these strategies. Authenticity is one of the most important parts of marketing via social media.
1. Share Behind-the-Scenes or Process Footage
If you handmake your products, like candles, jewelry, or pottery, show off your process and share behind-the-scenes shots! Customers love seeing their favorite makers in action. This can also be extremely easy to compile–just set up your phone and hit record while doing your normal routine. If you don’t record a voice-over, don’t forget to pair the footage with a trending sound to reach a wider audience.
2. Hop on the Trends
Speaking of trends, you may have noticed the same script or video format being used by many different Instagram and TikTok pages. Most of them are humorous, meme-like skits. Hopping on a few of these trends every now and then can help get your page noticed by newer audiences, and generate likes, comments, and shares. You may feel a little silly at first, but as long as you have fun with it, your followers will enjoy it.
3. Encourage User-Generated Content & Share It
User-generated content (UGC) is a powerful way to build trust in your brand and increase engagement with your audience. It’s different from influencer marketing in that the users are spontaneously sharing content about your brand instead of being given compensation for mentioning your brand. UGC is highly coveted but not easily won.
Fortunately, there are many great ways to encourage your customers to share content about your brand and products. Create a branded hashtag and include a packaging insert encouraging customers to use it–this is especially effective for wearable products like jewelry and clothing. Another way to encourage UGC is to have great product packaging that inspires customers to film their unboxing process. Be sure to engage with these user-generated posts and share if the user gives you permission!
4. Host Giveaways
If done correctly, giveaways can boost your follower count and help you reach tons of new users. Most giveaways, especially on Instagram, follow the same criteria: follow the account, comment on the post and tag someone, and sometimes share the post with your followers. Each step boosts engagement with your page, which is what marketing on social media is all about. Giveaways also foster good feelings about your brand, because who doesn’t love free stuff?
Social media marketing is one of the best ways to grow as a small business. With these strategies in mind, you should be able to create amazing content for your social media pages and watch the followers roll in. If you need help with your product packaging to make those unboxing videos extra special, give our team a call! We love small businesses and would love the opportunity to help your brand succeed.
You might also like:
- How to Market a Candle Business [+ tools and resources]
- How to Market a Cannabis Business: Dos, Don’ts, and Resources