6 Best Practices For Social Media Success You Can Use Today

6 Social Media Best PracticesWith so many social networks emerging today, it can be difficult to put together and stick to a social media strategy, but it’s evident that businesses who do have a social media strategy, excel above those who don’t.

Wildfire by Google, created a neat and colourful inforgraphic of the 6 best practices for social media success, and despite the fact that the study is based primarily on corporates, there is something we as entrepreneurs and small business owners could learn from these best practices.

Whilst I don’t want to go through all six, there are a few that I’d like to elaborate on:

  1. Best Practice #1, The Allocation Of Brand And Digital Budgets For Social

    I appreciate that entrepreneurs and small business owners don’t have this kind of budget, but notice how the companies with excellent social initiates allocated a budget to social media. 

    The question is, how could you, the small business owner or entrepreneur do this?

    I think budget here falls into two categories of money and time. And here is my observation from working with clients over the past eight years when it comes to time and money …

    Too much time and money is spent on site construction, (look and feel) and not enough time and money on actual marketing

    If the balance shifted to more focus on marketing, including social media, and less on the look and feel of the site, I’m confident that any entrepreneur or small business owner could get similar results to those outlined, whether they have a big budget or not.

  2. Best Practice #2, Get Outside Help

    Again, whilst these companies have bigger budgets, there is no reason for small businesses to go it alone when it comes to social media. There is a wealth of free information on Google+ alone regarding the use of social media in your business. It may be true that the best resources are not free and yes, it can take time to find these resources, but it’s better than guesswork.

  3. Best Practice #4, Set Clear And Measurable Goals.

    There is a big difference between having a social media strategy and just implementing tactics. Without a strategy, your goals (if you have any) are going to be much harder to achieve.

    You must also know why you do what you do on social media. Example, I like to play on social media, but understand two things … a) if all your posts have nothing to do with your business, you’ll attract the wrong kind of followers and engagers and b) if you push your business too hard, it will be like having two magnets with similar polarities trying to attract each other, you’ll repel people.

    So there must be a balance in terms of the content you use to engage people and behind your content, there must be a strategy for engaging in the first place. 

    And oh, attracting the biggest number of followers is not a strategy. You want responsive social engagers and not merely followers.

    So when you’re thinking about strategy, think in terms of specific goals or results. In other words your plan of action to increase traffic to your website, or to increase your sales by 20%.

    Now you have a strategy, you’re ready to apply the manoeuvres or actions themselves (the tactics of how you’ll engage people on say Facebook, Google+ or Twitter) that will move you toward your desired outcome.

    Having these clear goals in mind “should” put an end to the “fire, fire, fire,” approach. You need to get ready, aim and then fire! 

  4. Best Practice #6, Be Active On Multiple Networks

    I actually found this one quite interesting because companies that reported excellent results in their social initiatives were active on at least 5 social networks, whereas those who reported poor results were active on only 2.

    My advice is simply this, you need to go where your prospects are hanging out, but you also need to ensure you don’t spread yourself too thin. It’s best to work two social networks really well than it is to work five poorly.  

In conclusion, if you don’t have a social media strategy, now is the time to get busy so that you maximise all of your social efforts and so you don’t just have tactics or manoeuvres that will do little to move you toward your specific goals.

Until next time,

Trish's Social Media Signature

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