Why does my business need to be on social media?
The short answer is ‘everyone else is’. Slightly simplistic, and a little sheep-like as well, but that’s the answer.
But I don’t have an online shop, you say.
No, neither do I.
But I’m still all over Facebook and Twitter, and have a Linked In account, a Google Plus account, a Pinterest account, and an Instagram account that I’ve not done anything with yet. And I blog. (Evidently)
If you had an ice-cream van, you’d want to be in a warm place, full of crowds, to get the maximum trade, wouldn’t you? So you need to work out where your potential customers are, then make sure you’re there too. Even if what you’re selling can’t be traded online.
Also, you need to know what people are saying about you online. If there are negative reviews of your business out there in the ether, you need to know, so you can either improve something to counter a problem, or explain better, or get them taken down if they’re not true. Either way, you’re in danger of coming across as uncaring and ignorant if you’re not interacting with the complainers.
In addition, you can say ‘thanks’ to people who give a positive review. They’ll be the people who bring the customers to your door, so you need to be aware of them. If they rave about the occasional times that waffles turn up on your specials board, maybe you need to institute ‘Waffle Wednesdays’ in your restaurant. Who knows, you may be onto a winner!
Keeping up with the Joneses
The only problem with Facebook and its friends, is that you need to be posting new content regularly. There’s nothing that says ‘can’t be bothered’ quite so loudly as a Facebook page which was last updated 18 months ago, or only has a couple of tired pictures and some stuff about Christmas – 2013. If that’s yours, for goodness sake take it off line for the moment!
You need to be posting items reasonably frequently, to make sure that customers, having visited your page once, come back. The frequency differs for different channels, but for Facebook, post at least once a week, and for Twitter you need to be tweeting, or re-tweeting, several times a week, preferably daily.
There’s no point in initiating sites across every single one of the channels that exist (and there are dozens) if you’ve not got the time to spend in servicing them. It’s better to have a single good page in the best place for your business, and keep it up to date, than a fist full of dormant accounts spread all over the place.
I’ve got more posts about where you should be on social media, and how often you should be posting – as well as the all-important what you should be posting, so have a mosey around and read some more.
If all this seems a little intimidating, then you’re not alone. There are many businesses out there whose attitude to social media is ostrich-like at best. If you want some help getting started, or generating some ideas for what you can post about, then talk to me. I’ve helped a number of organisations develop their social media presences, from day centres to charities and small businesses. I’d be delighted to help you develop your professional social media presence.