As the final post in my ongoing series sponsored by Comcast, I want to talk social media. As an online business owner, social media is a huge component of my business. However, these days it is important for EVERY small business no matter what you do or where you do it. Some days I love it and some days I hate it. At its core it is easy to use, but it is increasingly difficult to keep up with so many different platforms and figure out how to maximize your ROI (if you even have any right now). How do you keep it all straight?
Go Where Your Customers Are
The best advice I ever received about social media was to go where my customers are. I see articles on a daily basis about how to use and advertise on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, Twitter, LinkedIn, and now even Snapchat. There’s no way for me to be able to be in all of those places short of hiring a full-time social media person (which isn’t my budget). So how do I keep up?
Although I have a minimal presence on each different platform, I focus on the ones where my customers find me and interact the most. I’m sure that I have a lot of Sunshine Rewards customers on Snapchat. But that medium isn’t conducive right now to online shopping. It’s more about big brand awareness, which is not for me. I have an Instagram account that I post to once a week, but my members are just not interested. Instead, I focus on the 7000+ fans that I have on Facebook where I can get them to interact with the deals that I post daily. I see what gets them excited and what they share with their friends. By going where my customers are, I am able to commit my resources there and see results without getting frustrated.
Learn from Others
There’s no sense reinventing the wheel when you are already spread thin. In fact, chances are pretty good that someone has already tried just about everything you want to try and answered every question that you have to ask. Find sources that you trust to help you stay educated about changes, trends, and tips. One such source is the Comcast Business Community. In fact, they recently released a recorded webinar about social media that will give you tips and advice on how to use it to increase sales. The webinar is about an hour long and you can also get the Slideshare with all of the slides.
Who can benefit from the webinar? Anyone who is either trying to decide whether social media marketing is necessary for their business or has started using social media but needs a better understanding of how to take their plan to the next level. I don’t watch a lot of webinars, but I am glad that I took the time to watch this one (and wish that I had been on it live). It helps frame some of the questions about social media in a way that will make you rethink some of your strategies and give you ideas for a new roadmap. (For a long time I was one of the people guilty of the very first thing the presenter talked about!) I knew I was going to believe in the presenters when one of the first things they talked about was exactly what I wrote above—my belief of going where your customers are instead of spreading yourself too thin.
In addition to the webinar, Comcast Business frequently releases new articles through the Comcast Business Community site. Each week there are articles about everything from social media to being an entrepreneur to how to make your YouTube channel more engaging to funding your business. No matter what line of work you are in, you will find something there to interest you.
Social media can make or break your small business depending upon how much time you are putting into it and the results of those efforts. Be smart about how you are using it and use any resources available to you. You’ll find that you can spend less time and grow your business more when you are smart about it.
Comcast Business partnered with bloggers such as me for this program. As part of this program, I received compensation for my time. They did not tell me what to purchase or what to say about any product mentioned in these posts. Comcast Business believes that consumers and bloggers are free to form their own opinions and share them in their own words. Comcast Business’ policies align with WOMMA Ethics Code, FTC guidelines and social media engagement recommendations