If you’re involved in any sort of business you probably know the importance of having an online presence. Having a website on its own used to be enough, but with the rapid and overwhelming influx of social media platforms that is no longer the case.
You need to be on a few key social media platforms to establish your brand in the digital space. This post aims to introduce you to a few fundamentals of establishing a social media presence.
1. Start a Facebook page. Right now!
I’m not kidding. If you have a business go and claim your Facebook business page before someone else does. This will become the home of your business on Facebook. Why bother? Well, there are up to 2 billion (!) active users on Facebook. That is potential for some serious exposure if you want it and as a business owner, I’m assuming you do!
Your ‘branded’ Facebook URL (something like this facebook.com/pixelbulb) is a great way to show you care about your branding and makes it a lot easier for potential clients and customers to find you. Plus it just looks better!
“One out of every five page views in the United States is on Facebook!” Gary Vaynerchuk
- Make sure your URL is as close to your business name as possible. Sometimes someone may have already taken your name so add a related word to the end as a modifier.
- Upload your logo. We’re a visual bunch us humans. It’s worth adding your logo here as it helps build your brand awareness.
- Upload a cover photo. This is the big image that sits at the top of your page. If you leave it blank it looks lazy and unprofessional. Upload a picture of something that you do or sell. Make sure it’s good quality too. There’s nothing worse than a low quality cover image on your Facebook page.
- Fill in your About section. Don’t leave this blank. If you do manage to attract someone’s attention with your magnificent branding, don’t leave them guessing about the details of what you do! Fill it in, let them know and get them pumped about it too.
- Add a Call to Action. Facebook pages offer some great customisation options and a CTA is very powerful. Have an email list you want people to sign up to? Add a button to it directly from your page. Have a link you want people to visit? Do the same!
- Get friends and family to like the page. A tumbleweed floating around on your Facebook page is not going to benefit your brand. Get some page likes going by politely inviting friends and family to give it the thumbs up and share it. This will give an element of social proof to other people who may also like it!
2. Get a Twitter account
“Tweet you twit” (something my Nan said to me once, full of wisdom my Nan). Twitter is up there as another of the largest social media platforms in the world. Getting yourself up on running on Twitter is easy. It’s a free account (like Facebook). Once you’re up and running you can immediately start interacting with potential customers or clients and even big players in your industry. Get involved with the conversation don’t just use the platform as a one way system for you to push your agenda. People don’t like that.
- Upload visual branding. Much like your Facebook account, make sure your branding is on point so you Twitter page is instantly recognisable.
- Add a bio. This is a little bit about your brand and your mission. Make it memorable and not too cryptic. There are some weird Twitter bios out there.
- Share you content. Don’t be spammy about this. If you have something valuable to share with the community do it! If not, create something.
- Retweet other people’s content. If you love the content one of your fellow Tweeters creates, retweet it. This is basically sharing it again with all of your own followers.
- Use Hashtags. These are a clever way to tag your content so that it will appear in searches for that specific tag. For example if you wanted to tag your post with something like ‘Amazing Quote’ your would use the hashtag formula of ‘#amazingquote’. You can also use more than one hashtag per post, but I wouldn’t recommend going too overboard. Two or three should do.
- Get involved with your niche or industry. This is probably the most valuable element of the whole Twitter game. Interact with your peers. Offer any wisdom you can for free. Don’t do it for the reciprocal likes and retweets but because you are trying to be an authority in your industry. That’s the true power of social media.
3. Get an Instagram account
Remember how I said us humans are visual creatures? Well Instagram is all about the visual. It’s owned by the mighty Facebook so has a massive user base and is dedicated to photographs and imagery. It’s a mobile only app (there is a desktop version but at this point you can’t share images that way).
If you sell a physical product then Instagram is gold. Imagine being able to target your niche with a fantastic photo of your latest product, then direct them to your store to purchase the thing they just saw!
- Upload your branding. Yep, this one again.
- Update your details. Make sure bio, name, website etc are all in there and correct.
- Post at least once a day. Can you commit to this? It’s fairly easy to do if you have a lot of products you sell. Harder if your in the service industry. But there are always ways. The hotel service industry for example could share pictures of their staff, hotel rooms, happy clients, dining etc.
- Follow and like. Again, get involved with your industry or niche on Instagram. It’s the name of the game. Social Media.
- Hashtags. Like Twitter, but I think you can get away with using a few more on this platform. Again, don’t be spammy with it though.
4. Create and share some amazing content
If you have a website, then the chances are you have (or can easily get) a blog. A blog is a fantastic way of sharing your views, news, reviews, tips, tutorials or anything else you think your potential clients would be interested in. It’s a great way to establish that brand authority I keep mentioning. You obviously know your industry, have a passion for it and want to help others. Your blog is your way of showing the world just that.
Tips for creating content:
- Blog regularly. I’m not saying three times a day. But once, maybe twice a week is a good starting point.
- Create a free ebook. Have a load of information you think would be useful for you potential customers? Get it down in an ebook and offer it for free! Stick your branding on it and you can potentially have a viral marketing tool.
- Post video content. If you have the passion for it, then video is a great tool to get your opinions and advice out there in the world. Different people prefer to consume their information in various forms. Many love the video format and YouTube is the perfect platform here.
- Start a podcast. Have a face for the radio (another on of my nans gems)? Bit nervous in front of the camera? Start a podcast. This way it’s only your voice out there and you can still share your valuable content.
5. Interact with your customers and niche
You need to build your industry authority. By this we mean showing your potential clients that you know what you’re talking about. The way to do this is to prove over and over again that you do know what you’re talking about (you do don’t you?).
By using all of the above social media platforms and tips you should be on your way to establishing a solid reputation out there. To solidify this position make sure you are interacting with as many people as possible on a daily basis.
Get after it!
Social media is no longer a secondary to marketing online. It is marketing online. While Facebook ads and Google Adwords are still a very important platforms for spreading your products, services and brand, they can’t establish brand trust and authority. Only you can do that, by being genuine, knowledgeable, passionate and really wanting to make a difference with the people you interact with.
This post has only scratched the surface of the potential of social media for building your brand and business. So get out there, build your authority with these tips and if you want any help with any aspect of your social media journey, please get in touch.
“Social media is not just a spoke on the wheel of marketing. It’s becoming the way entire bicycles are built.” Ryan Lilly