Starting a business in this fast-paced e-commerce atmosphere can be daunting for small business owners. How do you increase traffic or reach an audience? Social media seems to be the best answer to these questions, but it often creates confusion. These five tips will help you avoid common pitfalls and build your audience.
1. Inconsistent posting
Sporadic posting is one of the most common mistakes small businesses make with their social media. Most social media algorithms reward accounts that post regularly. Regular posting doesn’t mean five days in a row. It means posting consistently over a long period of time—sometimes every day, or multiple times a day.
Most people don’t have the time or energy to post to multiple platforms on a regular basis. A practical planning tool can help. Several companies offer post-scheduling services. This type of service allows you to schedule multiple posts in advance on different networks. If time is a challenge, try scheduling your posts an entire month at a time.
2. Posting boring or old content
Most people who engage in social media spend several hours a day reviewing content. If your content isn’t engaging or reusable, chances are you won’t find much interest in it. Social media algorithms also reward engaging content. The more people interact with your post, the more the platform will promote that post.
Even if you’re not that creative, you can instantly make your content more engaging by asking your fans a question. More controversial issues often get the most engagement, but be careful when promoting one side or the other with such content.
3. No interaction with customers or fans
Some small business owners don’t find it necessary to answer questions or respond to comments. That’s not the case. Responding to comments and questions increases the engagement of your post. You’re missing an opportunity to increase your post engagement if you ignore your audience.
Make it a point to reply to every single comment. Even if no response is required, thank the user for engaging. You can even encourage more engagement by asking the commenter a question. People love to share their opinions.
4. Posts without captions or tags
Hashtags are the lifeblood of some social networks. Learn to use tags to your advantage. Try a mix of popular and less commonly used tags for best results. Research the posts of similar competitors and see what hashtags they use.
Tags or no tags, you should always add a caption to your photos and videos. At least indicate the subject of the photo or video and indicate where you can buy the featured products.
5. Posting to the wrong audience
Ask yourself, “Who is my perfect customer?” Brainstorming about the type of person you are targeting your marketing to is fundamental. How old is your audience? What do you like to do in your freetime? You should be able to answer these questions about your customers.
Targeting posts to a specific audience is often a concept overlooked by small business owners who can’t afford a social media marketer or agency. Think about who you want to target with your posts, not your personal interests.
These five mistakes are easily avoidable. If you’re committed to growing your brand or audience, steer clear of these missteps. Building a social media audience takes time and commitment. Don’t get discouraged if your numbers don’t grow. Keep trying new things and repeating what works until you reach your goals.