This page is for you, the Small Business Owner. You ask us a lot of questions and we list some of them here.
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How do I know which Social Media platforms my business should use?
Every business has their own personality and customer demographic to consider in the choice of which social media platforms will be most effective for them. Consider every aspect of your business to ensure you are not wasting your efforts on the wrong platforms.
Should I get on every social media marketing platform?
No. Even if they are all suited to your business, it is important to have an effective impact for the best ROI. Best to begin with the one or two platforms where you are sure your demographic is present. Once you have well established yourself there and have learned what your followers respond to, then move to the next using similar strategies.
Can’t I just post the same thing on every platform using a social media management tool like Hootsuite or others?
For generic style posts that will not conflict with current engagement, yes. BUT, it is important to stay in tune with the activity displayed on individual platforms. And some posts play better on different platforms due to the types of followers or due to the character limits or image specifications.
Is Email Marketing Dead?
Definitely not. Actually it’s become stronger than before due to the rise of email opens on Mobile devices. It is important to cater to your mobile users by always previewing your emails on your mobile device – big readability difference from monitors!
No, email is not social media, and it should be integrated into your social media marketing! Email Marketing is all about speaking directly to the customer who already knows you. Learn how to use this important tool!
Is Facebook Dead?
That depends on your perspective and use. There are many opinions in regard to the effectiveness of Facebook for business. In addition, the recent emphasis on monetization for exposure has been slightly discouraging for some small businesses. At the present time, effectiveness based on individual strategy and use and should be determined with proper consulting.
What are the basics for an effective Facebook Business Page?
Does your cover photo reflect your company culture? Is your profile photo instantly recognizable in a news feed? Are you attracting comments and likes? Facebook has become as important as Google in consumer searches and your presence there is important to your business success.
Is Google+ Dead?
Definitely not. In just a couple of years, Google Plus has been the strongest emerging platform, and it is also the most dynamic. With its integration of every facet of Google Apps and Accounts, you cannot go wrong by migrating to Google+. Results will become evident as the SEO advantages are indisputable.
Why Should I be on Google Plus?
Google+ is gaining huge ground. It is, after all, a Google product and is well-integrated into their search engines to help boost your presence. Not to mention how much better participation in Google Plus enriches your search visibility. Check out Google Hangouts and communities for even more visibility.
Should my SMB have a YouTube Channel?
YES! YouTube is the #1 Search Engine today! And as a Google Product, it will boost your SEO! If you haven’t tried video yet, don’t be intimidated. SmartPhone technology makes it so simple. Get the foundation set by Customizing and branding your own YouTube Channel to boost your online presence worldwide and make your business a star!
Should I bother with Twitter?
Twitter is your outreach to those outside your normal spheres of influence. People rely on Twitter as an information source. It plays a big role in adding your industry credibility and that worldwide online community is ready to contribute to your industry presence. Everyday engagement, Tweetchats, and information sharing are your keys on Twitter. Open your eyes to Twitter’s potential!
What is most important on LinkedIn?
Complete your profile and upload a quality headshot! Acquaint yourself with the various tools and features. Respond to others’ updates, endorsements, recommendations. Share news, participate in relevant groups, company pages, and more. It is important for EVERY professional to present their best face on LinkedIn – now more than ever. Increase your customer and business presence and gain more respect in your industry.
What about Pinterest?
Whatever type of business you have, a picture is worth a thousand words! The most visually addictive of all social media platforms, Pinterest’s performance has rapidly risen in encouraging product purchasing. If you are looking for a place to visually entice your customers, Pinterest can’t be beat!
What is Content Marketing?
In layman’s terms, it is simply the use of content to drive SEO. Google has prioritized fresh content for their search tools. Therefore, the more fresh content you provide across all of your online presences, the more likely you are to get picked up and placed on initial page results of consumer searches. That’s QUALITY content, sir and ma’am, not just any content. Yes, Google can tell the difference – mostly. And yes, keywords are still important – but used within the context of your content, not buried in the background of your pages.
I’m not a writer, so why should I blog?`
If you can talk about your business passions, you can blog about them, too. Having an active blog page on your website will encourage higher SEO rankings (see the above question on Content Marketing). Content is also reusable in your other platforms. Blogging can make your online presence stronger in many ways!
I don’t understand Social Media since I’m not on it. Why can’t I just continue using Traditional Marketing?
Aside from the obvious that you can’t understand the difference if you don’t know anything about it? Consider that mobile device usage is growing exponentially. And one of the primary uses for mobile devices is social media. How do you expect your traditional marketing to reach the social media consumers? Social Media is for interaction, engagement, sharing. People are there for the enjoyment factor; not to be sold.
But why can’t I just use traditional marketing methods on my Social Media pages?
Because they simply don’t work. As a small business, you cannot draw the masses to your social media pages, but you can create a sense of community and intimacy for your demographic. They want to know what goes on behind the entrance to your business. For every time you hear a new customer say they didn’t realize what you and your business were about, you can kick yourself for not being present on social media. And if you are blasting traditional marketing ads on your social media pages, you are not building a relationship with your fans and prospects.
I get a lot of businesses trying to sell me on buying their program to get me thousands of “Likes.” Is that a good way to get started with the most exposure?
As our old friend, Elmer Fudd, used to say, “Be Vewwwwwy Careful” with these solicitations. Many of them based in foreign countries and draw few to none of your local consumers. In addition, many of them are Fake Profiles. Yes, fake: profiles created with the sole purpose of generating likes for clients are useless. You want quality fans for your social media accounts. Social media users are becoming more aware that thousands of likes does not necessarily mean thousands of engaging fans.
What is a quality fan / follower?
Your demographic, an active user, and the kind of person you know interested in your products or services and will be an advocate for your business. This does not mean all your fans have to be paying customers. It is also important to have active fans that will help you get exposed to their fans who are potential customers.
I keep hearing about mobile websites. Do I need a separate mobile website?
If you have the budget for it, it is an advantage. However, since the trend is for multi-device viewing, maybe not. The key is to make sure your template is mobile-friendly.
How do you know?
- Have you looked at your own website on your mobile devices?
- Can you use a thumb to connect links?
- Do you have to scroll or zoom too much? . . . you get the picture.
- Make sure your font size is at least 11 pt. Put more breaks/white space in the content – better yet, reduce the amount of text!
Mobile means a quick view! Balance with images and you’ll see a better result in viewing habits.
[This page is a work in progress and more Q&A is coming!] Send YOUR questions to us and maybe it will appear here!