How to use Social Media from the ground up to promote your small business
A simple step-by-step and easy-to-understand social media guide for boosting your sales using free and/or paid methods
THE SOCIAL MEDIA ERA
According to datareportal.com, in July 2022 the number of social media users globally reached 4,7 billion. This number corresponds to 59% of the world’s population!
Businesses have taken advantage of this fact, using social media daily to promote themselves, build an audience, and increase their sales.
Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, Youtube, TikTok, and Reddit are some of the most famous Social Media platforms, with millions of posts and ads being promoted daily through them.
In case you own a small business and want to increase your sales as soon as possible, then the best time to start would probably be…now!
With so many methods of advertising and promoting your business currently available -both free and paid- you can join the world of social networks and bring an immediate and profitable update to your business context.
So, let’s take a closer look at the most important and effective steps through which you can bring a boost to your sales, using free and/or paid methods to promote your business through social media.
1. RESEARCH YOUR COMPETITION
It may seem a bit strange, but the first step to being able to do what you aim for well is to see who is currently doing it better than you.
Do an in-depth research about your competitors, look at the social platforms they use, their logos, their ads, their posts, their websites, and their audience. Find their stronger and weaker spots, their marketing approach, and use that knowledge to create your own marketing route through social media.
Competitors’ research is one of the most basic methods that today’s biggest businesses and companies around the world use to create their marketing strategy.
Note: You could perform a competitor’s research yourself, or use a professional who will do an in-depth research for you.
Free competition research tools: Moz, SpyFu, Wordstream
2.BUILD A UNIQUE VISUAL BRANDING
Time to create the digital profile of your business. That is your Visual Branding.
Regardless of which social platform(s) you will be active in -the more the better-you will need a unique logo, possibly a slogan, wall and profile pictures, some graphic design, colours and other aesthetic elements that will help on capturing the concept and personality of your business online.
These elements will form the core of your Virtual Identity. For this reason, they should be made in such a way that they attract your audience and are easily imprinted in their memory.
Note: If your design skills are not your strongest attribute, turning to a specialized graphic designer might be a pretty good idea.
Free designing tools: Canva, Shopify, Freelogodesign
In case you choose to create your business logo for free by using one of the tools we mentioned, you should always keep in mind the risk of copyright. In other words, there is a risk that someone else might also use your logo, or that someone will register it as a trademark for himself/herself, claiming all its’ copyrights.
3.CREATE YOUR BUSINESS PAGE(S)
Once the necessary elements of your Visual Brand are ready, you can proceed to the next step, which is creating your business page(s), depending on which platform(s) you have decided to use.
Make sure to add all important information about your business- pictures, address, menus, descriptions, and of course your website.
Always keep in mind that your goal is to drive traffic to your website, and of course to the sale of your products or services.
Note: If you don’t have the time to deal with the creation of your business pages on social media, you could use the help of an experienced social media expert who will take care of creating these pages for you, based on the guidelines you give him/her.
Free tool: Use Google Search sources to learn how to set up your page properly.
4.BUILD YOUR AUDIENCE & START BEING ACTIVE
It’s time for perhaps one of the most crucial steps of all. At this point, it would be good to do two highly significant things simultaneously.
On the one hand to build your audience and on the other hand to maintain their interest and also achieve your main goal, which is none other than to turn the audience into your customers.
HOW TO BUILD YOUR AUDIENCE
Start with your close social contacts to build your social network. Whether you’re at a party or an event, make sure your social media information reaches the right people. Start building a network with the potential to expand day by day.
Also contact customers you already have, via e-mail for example. Let them know about your new moves, ask them to make a review on your page(s) or write a post about how satisfied they have been with your services.
HOW TO EXPAND YOUR AUDIENCE
Your next goal should be to expand your audience, use your social media to increase the traffic to your website, and gradually increase your sales.
But how can you achieve this within the realm of social media?
There are two ways.
The free way
Firstly, post content on your social media pages. Follow up by posting to groups -after joining them first-that have an audience that can relate to the demand for your products. Keep going by creating a group yourself and inviting people to join. Also, leave relevant comments about your page under posts and mention potential services, content, or products your business has to offer.
The paid way
Social media ads.
These ads can be a small investment compared to the financial gain of your business.
The truth is that social media advertising has improved tremendously in recent years to the benefit of businesses. Now you have the option to target a specific audience, of specific age groups and specific geographic areas and behaviours.
As long as you know your buying audience, you can target their characteristics directly, increasing your leads and sales.
Note: For someone with no experience, running a successful advertising campaign is possible…but not simple. An experienced social media manager could help you create the campaign safely and avoid any policy issues. But above all, a professional can handle your campaign correctly, promoting it to the right audience, in the right way, based on ongoing collected statistics and data that ensure the requirements of an advertising campaign.
HOW TO KEEP YOUR AUDIENCE
Be constantly active and show your interest in the people that follow you. Keep posting interesting and engaging content, highlight your business strengths, and respond to their comments and posts.
Show that you are there for their needs and build a trusting relationship with them!
Note: A social media manager expert can manage your social platforms successfully and take all the necessary steps to increase the popularity of your business.
5.MAKE WORDS YOUR SELLING WEAPON
As we’ve said before, being constantly active is a very important part of promoting your business through social media. But even more important is the quality of your content.
Your ultimate goal is sales!
Your content should therefore be a conduit to them.
That’s why you should create posts and content that will engage your audience and cause them to react to it. You could, for example, include a link to your website in your promotional posts.
For this reason, the words you choose to use should be such that they cause a direct response, turning one piece of content or ad text into a sales lead.
Note: A professional copywriter can greatly assist you in turning any text into a sales opportunity.
Free tool: Use Google Search to find some of the finest copywriting examples.
These days, small business owners have the chance to boost sales, promote their businesses, and strengthen their brands using social media platforms.
Whether and how much money you will spend to achieve this goal is always up to you.
If you have the time and willingness, you can make an effort yourself.
But if you are one of those who are looking for more certain and immediate results, then there is nothing to lose by talking to an expert and listening to his/her suggestions.
They will listen carefully to what you have in mind and then will suggest an appropriate plan-sales funnel based on your needs, wants and budget.
The exciting world of social media awaits…