Many businesses struggle with social media, from content creation to caption wording, but it doesn't have to be super complicated & there are ways to save you time! Here are just a few of my favorite social media tips that will work for any platform.
• ALWAYS use the newest feature
For many people who are successful on Instagram, you'll notice that they often say that they started early with a new feature. For example, Instagram Reels this time last year was very limited. Businesses who jumped on the Reel bandwagon early on were not only getting ahead of the curve, they were also the consistently promoted test dummies for Instagram. When a platform releases something new, they want to promote it. Why not have them promote their new feature with Y.O.U.?
• Use Video Whenever & Wherever Possible
Video is the way of the future, & social platforms are promoting it like it's going out of style. Whenever possible, use video to promote your business. It keeps your followers engaged longer, tells more of a story & ultimately will get you additional likes, comments & followers. (Don't forget stories, highlights & live videos too!)
• When You Can't Use Video, Do Multiple Images
Whether it's slider/carousel or galleries on Facebook, multiple images will always get you further than just one.
• Always Fill Out Your Full Profile
Completing your profile as much as humanly possible is the best way to boost your following. You're essentially telling the platform that you are a real person or business, that you are there intentionally & are willing to invest the time it takes to stay & be successful.
• Avoid Using External Links
Social media platforms want people to stay on their website for as long as possible, so they will not be promoting links that send people away from their website. This means any posts that have a link to an external site will probably have a lower reach & thus lower likes & comments.
• Be Sure To Post Applicable Content
Followers will be confused if you are posting about cupcakes when you are a real estate agent, for example. Maybe you're the local expert & a new cupcake bakery opened - that's great! But be sure that your posts connect with what your followers are expecting. If they are expecting you to be the one that points them in the direction of new area activities, do it & keep it up!
• Provide Value With Each Post
What value can you provide to your followers? Ask yourself what content you can put out there that is educational, inspirational &/or funny. Ask yourself - why do they follow me? How can I keep them following me?
• Do What You Can To Be Consistent
Everyone says that consistency is key, but that's easier said than done, right? My rule of thumb is that you don't need to post daily or even every other day, but you need to find a routine that works for you. If this means you only post on Tuesdays & Thursdays, that's fine. But be sure to be there when your followers are looking for your content. It's like a podcast episode, they might be wondering where you went to!
• Avoid Being Too Repetitive
Posting similar content over & over again on your feed can frustrate followers. If it isn't providing them with any value, they will begin to wonder why they are following you. Try to mix up your content. If you do need to post anything repetitive, I'd recommend varying the type of content you use. For example, one post can be a photo, one a video, one a reel, one on stories, etc. You might also consider doing all stories for the repetitive content & creating a highlight.
• Make Sure Account Is Public
I've found that some businesses keep their company accounts private on some platforms, specifically on Instagram. When you do this, any promotional attempts (like keywording & hashtags) are going completely unnoticed because your current followers are the only ones who can see them! I highly recommend making your business account public if you can.
• Include Yourself In Your Profile Picture
Studies have shown that business profiles with a person in the profile picture get more followers & overall interaction.
• Follow The 80/20 Rule
It seems as though many businesses fall into the trap of only posting business content, but you need to ask yourself how you are relating to your customers & why they are following you. What can you provide to them other than your professional products or services? What value could you possibly provide to them for free that will keep them hooked on your social platforms until they are ready to purchase? The rule many small businesses use is that they only post 20% or less business pitch content, with the other 80% being content that's providing them with essentially free value.
• Stick To A Few Themes
Make it easy on yourself & your customers/clients by sticking to a few themes; this means posting about your business, but also adding in fun things about yourself like the books you like, your family pet, a behind the scenes look at what you do, etc. Once you have a few fun theme ideas, be consistent & you'll start to see how relatable you're becoming to your followers.
• Consider Outsourcing Content Creation
Instead of hiring a company to post for you, consider hiring someone who can make content for you (such as a photographer). This way you have full control over what is being posted then, without feeling overwhelmed with the content itself.
**Amy Riordan is teaching a Social Media Bootcamp for KCYP on April 5th, 2022! If you are interested in learning more from Amy, register here: https://kcyp.org/event-4616259
Amy Riordan is a Coeur d'Alene Commercial Photographer & FAA Certified Drone Pilot specializing in helping small businesses succeed in online media. She is also a proud wife, dog mom, writer & runner.