Social Media Guide for Beginners

When deciding whether or not you need social media for your business, just remember the stats:
  • There are 2.2 Billion active users on Facebook.
  • There are 1.9 Billion active users on Youtube.
  • There are 1 Billion active users on Instagram.
  • There are 336 Million active users on Twitter.
  • There are 250 Million active users on Pinterest.
At a glance these numbers may make you feel like a drop in a bucket but just imagine the number of strangers that you could possibly reach across each platform. These are strangers that you wouldn’t normally reach with traditional advertising like print, broadcast, or billboards. With the proper strategy, social media can become your vital marketing tool.
So where do you begin?
Here’s 4 tips to jump start your social media account for business:
1. Brainstorm your social media account name
When starting this brainstorm session it is important to point out your business industry (fashion, beauty, tech) & who’s your target audience (kids, moms, retired women).
If you are a brand spanking new business: Be creative but not difficult.
Your social media name should be able to roll off your tongue with quickness if someone ask “What’s your IG?” in person. Something like “cookies123madeathome” is just doing the most. Stick with the basics like “CookiesbyMamaSanta”.

You can start with compiling a list of 5 to 7 names then drill down to the top 2 names. By creating a list of names will allow flexibility when moving on to tip #2
2. Name Availability
Check to make sure your account name is available across all social media platforms
Now that you have atleast 2 social media names to choose from you can start plugging in those names into Name Checkr. It is important to keep your name consistent on each platform. You can choose the top social media platforms that your target audience uses the most. This way your account name will have only your content on Facebook, Instagram, & Youtube instead of someone with no relation to your business uploading to Youtube with your business name.

When signing up for a new account make sure that you opt for a business profile and not personal profile. On Instagram, Facebook, and Pinterest there are different features and settings if you choose the business profile instead of personal.
Now you’ve solidified your account name across all social media platform – what’s next? What content (photos, videos, call-to-action) should you post? How to get more likes & more views on your content?
3.  Write it down. Make it plain.
a. As a wise woman once said, a goal without a plan is just a dream. Signing up for those social media accounts are just the beginning of marketing your services or products across social media. Now you must write down your content plan, ask yourself
Target Audience: Who are you talking to?
Purpose: How will they benefit from your business?
Goal: What should you inform them about (benefits of booking your services or making a purchase, issues your products/services will solve)?
Call-To-Action: Where can they purchase (email, text, website, etc)?

b.   When writing your captions you basically want to hand hold your audience through the customer experience they will receive when inquiring your service.

Many people are visual or need a bit of a push to understand exactly what the caption should look like. Here’s an example from Summer Fridays
Target Audience: They are location in colder climate so the Summer Friday mask would be perfect for them
Purpose: Explanation of how to use the mask
Call-To-Action: Shoppable pin to direct customers to purchase the item

Yes you’ll still get comments and messages asking “Where can I place my order?” “When is the last day to order?”

Be sure to set aside 30 to 60 mins a day to really dive into responding to comments and messages. This will give you leverage when getting customer reviews – they will rave about your “quick responses & great customer service”.

Think of social media as ‘digital work of marketing’ where the world is at your fingertips.
4. Automate & respond. So now that we have created our content (photos & captions) – what time should you post? This answer is very dependent on your target audience. If you are targeting moms you know that they are typically on their phones early in the mornings or later in the night. If you are targeting teenagers you know they are on their phones all the time lol – but more specifically outside of school hours especially for the holidays.
Now that you’ve conducted your market research on when your target audience typically uses social media. You are ready to AUTOMATE (this is my favorite part) – automation isn’t meant to “set it & forget it”. Automating your social media posts is meant to post for you so you can remain consistent while also performing all the other business roles as an entrepreneur.
Here’s my favorite social media automation apps:
1. Facebook Post Scheduler: Facebook has a post scheduler inside the app – I would suggest using the desktop version so that you can view the calendar as you’re scheduling. You’re able to schedule word posts, pictures, or videos.
2. Planoly: Hands down best Instagram scheduler – Planoly allows you to schedule 30 posts with a free account and you can choose to sign up for paid account. Planoly will automatically post to Instagram using your account and then give analytics on how your posts are performing.
3. Tailwind: Allows you to schedule Pinterest post for optimal performance on your pins. This will allow you to increase your views & clicks to your call-to-action whether it’s to your blog or purchasing an item.
4. Later: Another Instagram Scheduler that is similar to Planoly -- it’s more of preference when choosing what app to schedule your posts.

The most important tip that I can give you when it comes to marketing on social media is just that. You are utilizing social media to market so you MUST.BE.SOCIAL. This means you should be responding to comments, messages, and creating a virtual experience for your target audience. Many times business owners complain about having to respond to so many messages and meeting the expectations of their followers but in reality to create a shareable space you just be social with your audience.

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