Getting Started with Social Media Marketing for Small Businesses

1st April 2013 by Darren Candler - Social Media Marketeer Salisbury

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Social media marketing is one of the most effective ways to market a small business. Social media platforms provide free access to millions of potential customers all over the world. They offer a global platform to market your products and services, build your brand and bring in new customers. Careful preparation is the key to successful social media marketing.

Define your goals

As with any marketing campaign, it is essential to define your goals. Knowing what you want to achieve will give you a starting point to work from. For example, maybe you simply want to build awareness of your brand. On the other hand, you might have a specific purpose for your social media marketing campaign, such as promoting a special event or new product. Defining your goals will help you to make the best decisions about your marketing strategy.

Identify your audience

Who are you trying to reach with your marketing messages? Do you want to reach existing customers, potential new customers or another specific group of people? Are you aiming your marketing at a specific age group or demographic? Identifying the audience you are trying to reach will help you determine the best way to reach them.

Choose the right social media platforms

There are hundreds of social media platforms available. Maintaining a presence on every social media website would be almost impossible for most small businesses, so it is important to choose the most appropriate platforms to suit your needs. Most businesses like to have a presence on one or more of the most popular social media platforms, such as Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn, but there are also a variety of smaller platforms available. Smaller social media platforms can be useful for businesses operating within a niche market.

Design your profiles

Most social media platforms allow you to create a profile with information about your business, including your contact details and an image. It is important to use the same profile information, such as your image, username and tagline, across all of your social media profiles, as this helps other users to recognise and become familiar with your brand. You should also try to keep the design of your profiles similar to the design of your business website and blog.

Familiarise yourself with the rules

Every social media website has its own set of rules to govern how users should behave. Breaking these rules can lead to your profile being removed and your account being banned. Get to know how things work and what is expected of you. Take note of any prohibited activities. For example, some social media platforms will not allow users to promote gambling or other age-restricted activities. It can also help to read guides that have been written by other users, as these often explain the unofficial community rules.

Get involved

Get involved with other users and engage in debates, conversations and other activities. This helps to build your profile in the community and increases your popularity. Portraying a positive image and getting involved with other users provides the best foundation for your social media marketing campaign.

If you cant find the help you need ring us on +44 (0) 172 241 2678 or use our contact details below.

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