For many small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) social media is merely something that is talked about rather than adopted as part of an online marketing strategy. Very few SMEs take advantage of the benefits social media can bring to fledgling businesses in terms of enhancing their online presence and tapping into different consumer demographics.
Social media has never had a more influential impact on the everyday lives of individuals and businesses alike. A well-developed social media presence enables SMEs to understand their audience and improve trust and loyalty in their brand.
Here are some excellent initial tips to develop and maximise a social media presence for your business.
Identify your target market
It may still be an ‘old school’ rule of marketing but knowing who you want to communicate to is just as important as the message you send out. Identify key figures in your sector and understand what they want to hear from you as a business. This is not only useful in terms of social media presence but as an overall communications strategy.
Content is king
The key to any successful social media campaign is well planned, targeted content. Creating a constant stream of content that is on topic and in line with relevant themes and subjects is an on-going demand of company resource, so it is important to plan your content across a period of time to fill the gaps.
Measure and monitor effectiveness
There are a host of social media tools available to SMEs at present that encourage businesses to not only co-ordinate their content but to measure its effectiveness within your target market. For instance you may wish to monitor the number of re-tweets or mentions of your business communications via Twitter or the number of ‘likes’ attributed to your business Facebook profile.
Marrying social media with PR
Think of your business’ social media campaign as an instant television or advertising channel. You can get your message out to thousands of customers and potential customers at the touch of a button, but social media is only so powerful on its own. Any social media message should be married with additional marketing and PR activities, be it press releases or traditional advertising.
Social media – a new customer service channel
Social media platforms provide SMEs with the ideal customer service portal. Social media is all about two-way communication and consequently businesses can build their own community by responding to queries and questions from existing and potential customers.
Never be afraid to demonstrate your business’ expertise. In a competitive playing field demonstration of your knowledge is more power to you and your business.
About the Author: Lewis Mitchel is a journalism graduate from De Montfort University with a background in regional press, digital media and specialises in providing business guidance to SME’s. Lewis Mitchell is a contributing writer for Workspace Group and anyspacedirect.co.uk.
Image: Kittikun Atsawintarangkul