It’s time to accept change and adapt. 79 percent of Australians now use social media – 10 percent more than last year.¹
Posting regular updates on social media will help your firm communicate with current clients and attract new ones. Don’t think too hard about what to post on social media. Think of it as a quick update from your company and just post it. It helps improve your organic Google search ranking and shows your firm is up to date. This is key in today’s digital world.
So many companies spend big to create a website but forget that social media is another, often cheap way to speak directly to clients and prospects. Here’s five easy steps to make social media work for your firm:
1. What social media channels should I be on?
I would say all of them! However this is a bit unrealistic given you need to run a business, so choose wisely. My top social media accounts are:
Facebook: With 16 million users a month in Australia², it’s the most popular social media platform, where users see posts from their friends and click ‘like’ to stay connected with businesses big and small. It’s easy to see how many people viewed your post and clicked through to your website. And it’s simple to boost your posts.
Instagram: With 5 million users³, Instagram is more popular than ever. No longer just a place to post a photo of your favourite meal, users now like to follow local businesses and their favourite Instagram stars. To see how many people have interacted with your account, you can easily change it to a business account in settings.
LinkedIn: With 3.6 million users⁴, the online resume platform has grown so much over the past five years. It offers popular tools like PointDrive, which allows you to create presentations and see who viewed them. Soon you’ll be able to search by hashtag, which will help connect you to people interested in your updates.
Twitter: 2.8 million users⁵ post, view or check Twitter each month in Australia. Surprisingly, Twitter increased their users in Australia last year. Currently, posting on Twitter can help improve your company’s Google search ranking. Use Twitter when you're at industry events to connect with companies just like yours.
2. How do I make social media easy to manage?
Using a dashboard like Hootsuite is a great way to manage all your social media accounts in one place. You can schedule posts and see all inbound communication in real time. You can also manage your accounts on the go via your smartphone. Hootsuite is definitely my choice for a small business owner.
Other dashboards to check out are Sprout Social, Buffer and Cyfe. You may need to pay a small monthly fee, but a dashboard will save you so much time. Many also give you a free trial period.
3. I’m always stuck for content! I need content!
Good content is king on social. One way to create good content is to think of a few “content pillars”, i.e. topics that you can regularly post about and are most likely to engage your audience. This could include saving tips and advice, news from your firm, government policy changes or tax deadlines.
Once you have created your content pillars, think how many times you want to publish per week. Remember, less is always more when it comes to content. Think about what time of day is best to post to your audience. 43 percent of people check social media on public transport⁶, so the morning and afternoon peak hours are good times.
The type of content that reaches the most people on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter (and soon on LinkedIn) is video. Video, video, video! Most of the popular social media channels push video posts to more people than those with just an image. Some also allow you to stream live video to your followers. Try posting a video and see how many viewers you get.
4. Help solve a problem
Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn reward accounts that post engaging content, so this is an effective way to reach more people. No one knows how their algorithms work, however we do know they favour content that helps solve a problem or shares thought leadership insights. Try directing people to a current industry news item or a whitepaper.
5. Cut back on the second coffee of the day
You only need to spend a small amount to be seen on social. You’ll be amazed how much $25 a week will go on Facebook.
Open a Facebook Business account so you can target the right people. Many small business owners get caught boosting their business’s Facebook posts via their personal page, but the best way to manage your Facebook business account is via Facebook Business.
Facebook Business allows you to control who has admin access to your Facebook ad account. You can retarget people who visit your website, target people who live within a certain radius of your business or those with a particular interest. You can also target those who follow companies that attract a certain demographic.
You can also upload past, current and new client email addresses to retarget people with your company posts. You can do this on Twitter and LinkedIn too. The advertising choices are endless.
About the author:
Robert Wood is Social Media Marketing Manager for Sage Australia & Asia, where he inspires people to embrace the power of Sage. Follow Robert on LinkedIn.
1 & 6 – Sensis Social Media Report 2017
2, 3, 4 & 5 – socialmedianews.com.au