If you’re a business owner have social media frustrations, you’ve come to the right place. On one hand, social media seems really simple—you post something, people see it, you get results. We’ve all been there—you thought that post was going to be super popular, but instead, you’re hearing crickets. Then you start to wonder, how is social media adding to your business? Why even bother? Giving up can be really appealing sometimes.
But taking the easy route doesn’t mean it’s the right way to go. Social media is a valuable business tool for retaining past clients and reaching new ones. Figuring out what you post, where you post it, and why you post is what gets real results. That’s why we’ve created the Social Media Field Guide to help you stay on top of social media updates and learn how social media benefits your business.
Here are some of the social media frustrations we’ve heard from our clients and how those frustrations can be remedied:
Frustration 1: I can’t tell if social media is doing anything for my business.
If someone has decided to add you, like you or follow you on one of your accounts, they’ve decided you’re awesome and are ready to consume what you put out into the world. Your job is to stay relevant with your audience and network by providing helpful tips, tricks, articles and photos that will keep them coming back for more.
But have you decided what you want social media to do for your business? Setting goals is the perfect place to start. Your goals should be broad statements that guide your online activities. They should also be statements that provide the ability to ask at any point, “Is this task helping me reach one of my goals?”
Goal example: increase business referrals through social media.
Bonus Content: Grab a copy of our Social Media Field Guide.
Frustration 2: My goals are way too lofty. I’m going to fail at social media.
Long-term goals are like lighthouses — they guide you from a distance. Turning your goals into concrete objectives is what makes social media manageable. Objectives are specific, measurable, and generally include numbers, like a percentage increase in revenue or a number of meetings set.
So let’s go back to our example of increasing business referrals through social media. An objective for that goal might be to calculate my referrals each month and keep track of my progress. This specific objective is beginner-friendly and does not contain numbers, and that’s okay. When you’re starting out, start small and set yourself up for success. After you’ve been at it for a while, you might change your objective to increase my referrals 30% over the previous six months.
When tracking referrals, you may find it helpful to use services like Google Analytics or bit.ly. Google Analytics can tell you how people are getting to your website, and bit.ly shortens longer links for use in social media posts (particularly important on Twitter) and tells you how many times that link has been clicked.
Frustration 3: I have Facebook and Instagram accounts–why aren’t people finding me?
You’ve already done a great job by signing up on these platforms as photo and video sharing are hugely popular. Most of your friends’ Facebook feeds are full of photos. Sharing images is also gaining popularity on Twitter, and Instagram and Snapchat are growing at a furious rate. But back to the topic at hand: how are you going to get referrals if no one can find you?
Include social media buttons on emails so your clients know how to find you on Facebook and Instagram, and have links to your social media accounts easily findable on your website. Keep your social media platform profiles/”about me” sections, up-to-date, use appropriate hashtags, and interact with other users so they can see you’re a person behind that profile. The easier you make it to connect, the better.
Now that you have a captive audience, you have to work to keep them interested in what you’re putting out there.
Frustration 4: Social media takes up way too much time.
If you don’t have a plan, social media can be a major time suck. There are so many cute animal videos out there waiting to be watched! Taking the time upfront to create a content calendar and a to-do list (also known as your tactics) will pay off in the long run. Your strategy is what you’re going to do, and your tactics are how you’re going to do it.
Here’s an example. You’re a real estate agent and you want to share articles and pictures that would interest your clients. Your tactics may include:
- Take and share a before and after photo every Friday on Instagram featuring a home renovation that looks great.
- On Tuesdays, spend 10 minutes looking for a how-to video on common home repairs to share with your network.
- On Saturdays, send emails to clients with info a fun event going on that weekend in your city and thank them for their business.
By executing on all these tactics, the next time Ms. Smith is looking for a real estate agent, her friend lets her know she saw your photo of a cute house in the area you want to move, and Ms. Smith ends up reaching out to you. When you bring goals, objectives, strategies, and tactics together, you can make social media magic.
Frustration 5: I thought I had social media covered, but I keep forgetting about LinkedIn. I don’t have time to add this to my to-do list.
Yes, having one more social media network to maintain takes time, but by joining LinkedIn you can finally get rid of that pile of business cards you’ve accumulated over the years because LinkedIn is a platform both for storing contacts and touting your professional accomplishments on your digital resume.
And if it’s relevant to your industry, LinkedIn makes it easy for everyone to post articles, preferably articles you write. Positioning yourself as an authority and knowledgeable professional is a great way to promote yourself within your circle of industry peers as well as clients who may find you on LinkedIn.
Now that you’re prepared to solve these social media frustrations and are extra excited to make things happen in the social media world, take a peek at our Social Media Field Guide to see what’s new in social media and how it benefits your business.
If you’re feeling less than excited, we can take marketing automation off of your plate.
Updated 1/19/2018, Originally posted 2/15/2015