Needaprint have teamed-up with award-winning digital marketing agency Integrity Search to produce a guide to the best, and most up-to-date, techniques for generating new business. This second guide will help you get to grips with the new marketing king – social media. If you haven’t already taken a look through our first guide to setting up a responsive website, you can do so here.
Most of us know that we should be using social media to promote our business, but the reality of how to do this successfully can still be a mystery. We know how to post photos of our nights out, our family, or our dinner on our Facebook wall, but how can these hugely popular tools generate new business for your company? With 2.307 billion active social media users in January 2016, it’s time to see social media as a tool to market your business. Follow this simple guide to help propel your business into the social media universe, with great results!
What Platform Should I Use?
There are a huge variety of social media platforms to choose from. The main channels, such as Facebook, Twitter and Google+ are a great place to start when setting your business up to take advantage of social media. These are free to set up, and are an amazing place to showcase work, as well as communicate with your clients.
Every platform has slightly different rules and restrictions. For example, Twitter has a 140 character limit on every tweet, which means tailoring content for a post. Alternatively Facebook has no character limit on posts, but this isn’t to say there aren’t optimal ways to post on Facebook.
Facebook is the largest social media site in the world, with an estimated 65% of it’s 1.56 billion users visiting the site on a daily basis. To start tapping in to this enormous market it is worth setting up a business page. This will link to your personal profile, and will allow you to invite friends to like the page.
On this business page, you can post a wide variety of content, from photographs and videos to simple text and surveys. Visual content works best on a site like Facebook, as it stands out well on follower’s newsfeeds. Try posting photographs and videos that showcase your recent work to allow clients to see with their own eyes how good your work is, without the need to take your word for it. A Facebook page can also work as a platform for clients to interact and respond with your business. Customers can leave genuine reviews, which are linked to their profile, allowing potential clients to see real, honest feedback of your work.
Facebook also provides tools for paid advertising, which allow you to extend your reach into the social media market to an even greater extent. These Facebook Ads can be targeted by a host of demographics, from age and location, to gender and interest.
Similarly to Facebook, utilising Twitter to market your business can be a great tool for generating new business. Twitter engages a mass audience extremely quickly, whilst also cleverly making use of hashtags to develop local links. For instance, tagging a post with hashtags, such as #NorthEastPrinting, will allow users to find all of the tweets on Twitter that utilise this same tag, and thus make connections and contact with other similar businesses.
Twitter is also especially popular with individuals, including those who are experts in the industry. Connecting with these people, who can help to promote your business, is an invaluable modern network strategy. You can also stay up-to-date with the latest industry news and tips with these Twitter connections.
Google+ is a fairly new social media platform, but is a great tool for SEO (Search Engine Optimisation), which helps to promote your website’s visibility on sites such as Google. Creating a Google+ page is very easy, and will quickly help the people that are searching for your products discover your website.
Being a social media site, interactions and connections with other businesses, and clients, is the most powerful feature of Google+. Add regular content to your page and take part in specific groups on Google+ (Circles). Encourage clients to leave reviews of your work on your Google+ page, which will show up in Google searches.
There are many other social media platforms out there, such as Youtube, Pinterest and Instagram, which each have their unique uses for marketing your business. After you’ve established a presence on the main three social media sites, explore these other platforms, many of which can be linked with each other, to expand the reach of your online presence. Keep your social media regularly updated, as well as engaging with your followers and connections, and you’ll soon see the benefits to your business. What about the traditional methods of marketing a business? Are they dead and buried in the digital age? The facts would suggest otherwise – find out more in our next guide.