Make so­cial me­dia work for your busi­ness

South Shore Breaker - - Homes - CANDICE REEVES SMALL BUSI­NESS ESSEN­TIALS edi­tor@southshore­breaker.ca

Over the years, so­cial me­dia has tran­si­tioned from a space to catch up with friends, into a mar­ket­ing pow­er­house filled with al­most four bil­lion peo­ple. The av­er­age per­son spends about two hours on so­cial me­dia ev­ery day and Sprout So­cial says that num­ber equates to five years over a life­time.

I’m not throw­ing num­bers at you to prove how pop­u­lar so­cial me­dia is, con­sid­er­ing if you’re a liv­ing, breath­ing hu­man you al­ready know that. What I’m try­ing to point out is the po­ten­tial that a lot of small busi­nesses overlook when it comes to us­ing these so­cial plat­forms as a way to make some se­ri­ous dough.

Mod­ern-day con­sumers want to know more about a brand be­fore mak­ing a pur­chase and 74 per cent say that so­cial me­dia in­flu­ences their buy­ing de­ci­sions. Hai­ley, the owner of a cu­rated life­style shop in Ma­hone Bay called Here Nor There, says, “I have new cus­tomers come in from all over Canada and they tell me it’s be­cause they fol­low my shop on In­sta­gram.” Hai­ley also shared that In­sta­gram gen­er­ates all of the shop’s on­line sales as well.

When it comes to the land of tweets, likes and com­ments, work­ing smarter not harder will be your key to suc­cess. Here are a few ways to get more out of so­cial me­dia for your busi­ness:

1. Stop try­ing to be every­where at once. There are plenty of so­cial net­works out there, but that doesn’t mean your busi­ness needs to be on all of them. Choose the net­work your tar­get au­di­ence spends the most time on and stick with it.

2. Just be­cause you build it, doesn’t mean they will come. Cre­at­ing a pro­file and post­ing reg­u­larly won’t au­to­mat­i­cally gen­er­ate thou­sands of fol­low­ers or in­stantly drive sales to your busi­ness. It’s called so­cial me­dia for a rea­son. You have to en­gage with your tar­get au­di­ence if you ex­pect them to give your busi­ness any at­ten­tion or their hard-earned dol­lar bills.

3. Give your au­di­ence what they want. Ev­ery ma­jor so­cial net­work has a sec­tion for busi­ness in­sights filled with de­tails about your fol­low­ers, like what time of day they are most ac­tive and the type of con­tent they like best.

This in­for­ma­tion will help you choose when and what to post so more peo­ple can see, like and share your amaz­ing con­tent.

At the end of the day, you have a busi­ness to run and so­cial me­dia shouldn’t be an added stress.

Even if you can only post once a week, as long as your busi­ness stays con­sis­tent and en­gaged, you will see re­sults.

123RF

So­cial me­dia has grown into a much-need and re­lied on re­source for busi­nesses.

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