Three Social Media Marketing Strategies for Small Businesses

By on October 17, 2017

Social media has changed the world of marketing, allowing businesses to interact directly with individuals and participate in communities. Businesses can utilize social media to raise brand awareness, generate interest in their products, convey the personality of their organization, and create a more positive customer experience. As a small business owner, you need to maintain a strong and vibrant presence on social media in order to have a chance to succeed.

Simply being present on various platforms alone isn’t enough. You also need to be savvy about promotions, marketing tactics, and other tools available within social media that will allow you to better connect with your audience. Here are three strategies to strengthen your social media marketing efforts.

1. Harness the Power of Hashtags

Hashtags in social media are a powerful tool for organizing your content and engaging with a variety of communities and interests. By labeling a post with hashtags, people can more easily find your relevant content and identify your brand as a prominent voice on the topic.

Industry-specific hashtags are especially useful, and the more precise terms and phrases you use, the better chance someone will find your content. However, some hashtags are useful for a variety of small businesses including phrases like #shoplocal and #smallbusiness. Consumers often feel compelled to choose small, local businesses over large corporations in order to support their community and enjoy a unique product.

If you create fun hashtags, customers may include them in their own photos and posts, helping your marketing efforts naturally. Keep in mind, general terms will be used by many consumers and businesses, and your post may get lost in the mix. And you should also always search for a hashtag before using it in a post. A phrase that seems relevant to your content or brand may have a very different meaning within the hashtag landscape.

2. Generate Interest Using Scarcity

Have you heard of using scarcity to generate interest in your product? If you’re not familiar with the term, scarcity in marketing includes things like limited time offers, limited quantities, and limited access to products, services, or events. Because customers know there’s only a certain amount of something, these promotions speed up a buying process that is normally slowed by doubt and hesitation. People don’t want to miss out. #FOMO

Scarcity not only drives new sales, but also encourages returning customers. For example, seasonal products like Starbucks’ Pumpkin Spice Lattes convince customers to return to their stores, even if they haven’t engaged with the brand in a while.

Social media is one of the best ways to reach a lot of people and let them know about the promotion. It’s important to be clear about the limits in place. Being out of the loop and completely missing an opportunity can leave some customers feeling disappointed in your brand. Perhaps the most powerful reason scarcity pairs well with social media is the fact that people can see your followers actively engaging with your limited offer. That social proof is a compelling reminder to your audience that they should act fast.

3. Utilize Data to Inform Your Strategy

Big data has been useful for larger businesses for years, and because more people have come to realize the benefits it offers, now even small businesses can take advantage of the opportunities it can reveal. The data drawn from social media can help you to identify trends related to a number of factors, including how consumers respond to certain kinds of content, the time and day of the post that are most effective, follower growth and demographics, and ultimately, buying patterns.

Collecting and examining information about these elements can allow you to better understand what is working well already, and continue to improve that success in future efforts. This data is also helpful in identifying areas that could stand to see improvement or a shift in priorities. Social media is an extremely dynamic landscape to navigate. Because of this, you can (and should) follow trends in real-time in order to best match your social media marketing efforts with your audience’s needs and expectations.

Competing with both small and large businesses on social media takes persistence and a willingness to experiment and take risks. Reflecting on your current efforts and previous attempts can help you to develop the best marketing practices for your business, audience, and industry. By utilizing these strategies, you can better identify and set clear goals for your social media campaigns moving forward.

About Avery Phillips

Avery Phillips is a unicorn of a human being who loves all things related to people and their entrepreneurial spirits. Comment down below or connect with her on Twitter.
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