As part of your business marketing plan, social media should be a major tool in the process. Here are 20 social media hacks for small business owners to help you build your business. (This is also available in video.)
Many of these hacks can be used on one or more platforms and are designed to help increase engagement, develop leads, and grow your brand.
- Use hashtags. Hashtagify.me is a great tool to help you find relevant hashtags for your client industries, your service lines, and content topics. It is also a great tool to help you find influencers and to see the conversations taking place around a hashtag. Bonus: If you’re “creating” a hashtag, look it up first to make sure it’s not being used in a conversation you do not want your brand associated with.
- Scheduling tools help with productivity. Tools like Hootsuite, Buffer, and dlvr.it help you to preschedule posts so you’re not tied to your computer. Bonus: Social media is not a set-it-and-forget-it tool. You must engage, comments, share, and post to be effective.
- Stumped for content ideas, check out AnswerThePublic.com to see what questions the public is asking about the topic. For example, if you enter “business audit,” you will see questions like “What does a business audit mean?” “What is audit business risk?” and “What does a business audit consist of?” All of these are great topics for blog content and white papers.
- Use graphics in all social media posts. Canva is an easy-to-use, free graphics tool to create beautiful graphics for the major social media platforms, and it’s great for presentation graphics, booklet covers, brochures, online ads, and more.
- Boosting Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn posts is a great way to spend a few dollars, while increasing your social media reach. With just a few dollars, as low as $5 on some platforms, you can expand your reach outside your exiting follower base.
- Increase Twitter’s 140-character limit using this trick … Type a tweet as you normally would, but end it with an ellipse (…) or cliffhanger or some kind. Then reply to your own tweet in your Twitter stream, but remove the mention of your name and keep typing. Watch this video for more on this tip >> https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OJRp22IXqXY.
- Avoid the dreaded LinkedIn blocked profile information with this Google search hack. Let’s say you’re looking for leads who mention “restaurant” in their profile, and are located in the Indiana area. Go to Google’s search box and type in site:linkedin.com “restaurant” Indiana. You should get search results of people who’ve mentioned the term in their profile, as well as other LinkedIn content and groups associated with that term.
- Multiple tweets from the same blog article can be tedious to write. Missinglettr.com offers you a solution. For just $15 / month for a personal account, or $40 / month for a business account, each time you write a blog, the tool creates social media content based on the blog content and schedules it throughout the year. It may be used with Twitter, LinkedIn, Google Plus, and Facebook.
- Install the “ClickToTweet” plugin on your WordPress site. Then when writing content, you can add “clickable” moments that may be shared quickly by your readers. No typing needed on their part, and your handle is included.
- Listening is just as important as posting. If you’re not listening to the conversation, how do you get involved? Tools like Hootsuite, TweetReach, Social Mention, HowSociable, and more help you discover the who, what, where, why, when, and how around a topic.
- Filter comments based on keywords in Instagram. This hack is great if you want to organize comments by keyword, particularly if you’ve experienced trolls on your account. You can filter by comments or even turn them off if they are offenders. In your account, click on the gear icon; choose Comments; toggle to Hide Inappropriate Comments option.
- Use UTM parameters in your URLs to track clicks from various media to your website. Do this by searching for URL builders. Then complete the website URL; campaign source, such as blog; campaign medium, like Facebook; campaign content, which is the main phrase for your content. Here’s an example. The put the long URL in a URL shortener or your social media scheduling tool. In analytics, you’ll be able to see where people are entering your site and from what piece of content, not just the platform.
- If This, Then That (IFTTT) is a tool you can use to save yourself some time and acts like a social media robot. Here’s how it works. Connect your social media profiles, blog, cell phone, etc. Then you create the array of things you want to happen, such as update your Twitter profile image when you update your Facebook profile photo. Or, have your favorite Tweets emailed to you. Or, store your Instagram photos in your DropBox account.
- Create Twitter lists to target your posts to influencers in an industry, thought leaders who might share your content, and information your target audience would value. Once you create a list, your targeted tweet would look like this @username/listname (make sure there are no spaces in your list name, you can use dashes.
- Rather than simply posting your firm videos to YouTube, create a channel so when someone views your videos, they do not see other people’s video content on the sidebar.
- Keep track of your firm’s content posts in Excel or other tool, then re-purpose those posts throughout the year to draw in new readers and potential leads. It helps to save time because it’s content you’ve already created.
- Tie a blog to a trending topic or television show. For example, as Mother’s Day or Father’s Day approaches, ask staff about the best advice their father/mother gave them and then make a blog or video from their responses. Haiku Deck and SlideTeam.net have some stunning visuals you can create slide decks with that can easily be made into a video.
- Use listening streams to stay on top of trending topics your clients and firm. If you’re using a social media scheduling tool, such as Hootsuite, create a stream just for an industry, like #Construction. Any posts containing that hashtag will be collected in that stream, which save you time looking for content to share. It also helps you to find influencers, and your competition.
- If you want to implement Facebook contents, sweepstakes, and landing pages into your marketing initiative, take a look at 22Social. This fee-based tool connects to your company page and helps you create professional-looking events, promo pages, giveaway and sweepstakes pages, podcast promo pages, digital courses, and more.
- If you’re not using the LinkedIn publishing platform, you are missing an opportunity to extend your firm’s SEO and personal influence ranking. First, make sure your firm is listed as your employer on your LinkedIn profile. Next, write original content on the “publish” page. Remember to use a keyword in the title, in the image filename you load with the piece, and in the copy. This is most helpful if you’re creating blog content for your firm already and re-purposing that on your LinkedIn profile. Then share it in groups where your target audience hang out and on your personal profile.
Which tips will you begin using to increase productivity, to generate leads, and to expand your brand?
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