The Effortless Guide to Social Media for Small Businesses

The Effortless Guide to Social Media for Small Businesses

February 1, 2023
(Reading time: 6 - 11 minutes)

Do you find yourself so overwhelmed with the day-to-day operations of your business that social media marketing takes the back burner? Whether you are a small marketing team or the sole proprietor of any small business, you are probably familiar with having to wear multiple hats to keep your business running, however, I wouldn't write off social media so promptly, no matter how hectic things can get at times.

In this day and age, the internet has become a way of life, with more and more people worldwide who can access it anytime, anywhere, on their phones. Americans spend an average of 5 hours and 30 minutes daily on their phones (Source: Zdnet), which is the same as driving from Asheville to Wilmington, NC. By 2025, it is predicted that there will be over three smartphone users for every five people in the USA alone (Source: Statista).

Till not so long ago, apps were a rarity. The average person uses a minimum of 9 apps daily and 30 apps monthly (Source: Buildfire). Apps and social media have given people more ways to engage with a brand, making apps ideal marketing vehicles to develop new sales and help businesses address evolving client needs. There are 302.35 million social media users in the US alone, meaning 90% of the US uses social media. (Source: Demandsage.com) Hence, there is a good chance your clients and prospects are already waiting to hear from you, which is why effective social media marketing for small businesses is necessary.

These numbers alone clearly indicate that social media is a fertile and powerful platform for small business social media marketing. Grow your brand, connect directly with your audience, and build brand awareness and brand loyalty with an innovative social media strategy for small businesses.

Social media is, without a doubt, the most effective platform for lead generation, enabling businesses to create content and resources resulting in added value for their prospects and clients. When people click on your social media post or offer, they are engaging and opting in to stay updated by following your business online, and these are more likely to convert.

What if I told you there is a simple, effective approach to social media marketing for a small business? Social media is a free, simple, and powerful tool for small businesses to connect directly with people interested in their brand. However, a little thought and strategy go a long way, so before you start posting, you'll need to set up a social media marketing strategy.

The Importance of a Social Media Strategy for Small Businesses

Social media has become an important and integral part of an inbound marketing strategy. Having said this, I should add that creating valuable content that ranks well on the search engine results pages (SERPs) is only part of the formula. You need to raise interest in your brand, product, or service and lure people to your site. Understanding the different social media platforms is essential in making sure that you're sharing the right social media content with the right people.

Let's have a look at the main four social platforms, what type of content to post, how often you should share, and the best practices for each of these channels:

  • Facebook
  • LinkedIn
  • Instagram
  • YouTube

Getting Your Social Media Strategy Started for Small Businesses

These are the first steps in creating a social media strategy for small businesses:

  1. Set up business accounts or pages on each of the social media platforms
  2. Try to make your URL or username as close to your small business name as possible so users can easily find you online.
  3. On platforms like LinkedIn, Facebook, and YouTube, make sure to set yourself and any of your staff or business partners that will need access as admins.
  4. Once you have set up the accounts, entered the necessary information regarding your business, and added your logo as your profile image, you're ready to start sharing.

Facebook Marketing for Small Businesses

Facebook post of Chiropractor performing a spinal adjustment.

Spinal adjustments that a chiropractor on Facebook

There's a good chance that your clients are on Facebook, with its massive user base of 1 billion daily and over 2 billion monthly active users. (Source: Zephoria) You'll find Facebook makes it super easy to build target audiences for paid ad placements.

What to Post on Facebook

Facebook is a fairly conversational platform. Once a consumer decides to like your Facebook page, it means they are probably interested in receiving updates. In other words, they want to know about future promotions and sales. They want to get information about upcoming launches or events or hear about new products. Try sharing different types of content and determine what resonates well with your audience. Easy enough to tell it will be the posts with the most impressions, engagements, and shares.

How Often Should You Post on Facebook?

There is no limit for businesses when it comes to posting on Facebook. However, you'll want to avoid overdoing it. Studies indicate that engagement rates drop significantly for small businesses that post more than twice a day and those posting only once weekly. Essentially too much or too little won't pay off. If you post too often, people might get irked and unfollow your business, and if you post too seldom, you risk your engagement metrics dropping.

Figure out how much content you will need to promote and post accordingly. The optimal rate for an effective small business social media marketing strategy is about one update each day. (Source: CoSchedule)

How to Boost Engagement on Facebook

People who follow your business do so for a reason, so be sure to post relevant content to them and your brand and continue to provide value. It's essential that you stay connected with those who follow you and provide the right type of content for them.

Organic Facebook post of summer camp highlighting some of their favorite year-round employees.

LinkedIn Marketing for Small Businesses

An organic post on LinkedIn about StreeWise

LinkedIn, the oldest of the social media platforms, with over 250 million monthly active users, is the most used social media channel for business-to-business (B2B) marketers.

What to Post on LinkedIn

LinkedIn is where people go to connect and network with other business professionals online. Typically those who follow your business on LinkedIn are interested in information, insights, and business-related updates you can provide them.

How Often Should You Post on LinkedIn?

Try to post on LinkedIn each week. Companies that post weekly on LinkedIn see a 2x lift in engagement on their posts.

LinkedIn is the perfect platform for your employees to become brand ambassadors and assist in the proliferation of your content without oversharing.

How to Boost Engagement on LinkedIn

  • If you want to see more engagement on your LinkedIn posts, try video.
  • Share insights they can't get anywhere else.
  • Make sure your posts are a resource to assist consumers
  • Share posts that exemplify your knowledge of your industry.
  • Show your human side.
  • Add an image to your posts. Posts with an image have a 2x higher conversion rate than those without.

Cube Creative LinkedIn post

Instagram Marketing for Small Businesses

An organic post on Instagram

An organic post on Instagram

Instagram was a latecomer to social media, yet it is in the third position with 1.440 billion users as of July 2022. It is the most visually driven of all of the social platforms. Posting formats include short-lived stories and permanent posts. These options give you the flexibility to manage your Instagram presence.

As Instagram is affiliated with Facebook, there are some advantages. For example, you don't need to set up paid advertisements for your business Instagram account if you have already created it directly on Facebook. You can also instantly share posts on both platforms, from either platform, which saves a lot of time and time is an important asset for a small business owner, especially if you are just starting to learn how to use social media for your small business.

What to Post on Instagram

Instagram posts should feature photos, images, or short videos that embody your brand, brand value, and company story. Post content that showcases your expertise or promotes your business. Use Instagram captions to add more valuable information unless you have already created a post that does not need the extra text.

For a more casual and conversational approach, post Stories for your audience. These remain for 24 hours and are ideal for a product campaign and behind-the-scenes content which helps people get acquainted with your business. Stories are known to increase engagement and are excellent foe e-commerce brands since it allows you to tag products directly from your product feed on Facebook, and viewers can shop your Instagram Stories.

How Often Should You Share on Instagram?

As the old saying goes, it's all about quality, not quantity. Keep your posts consistent, so you don't lose subscribers. Generally, Instagram stories are posted more frequently, given their short timeline. Some businesses post several times per day. With Instagram, it largely depends on how easily your business translates visually.

Tips to Boost Engagement on Instagram

On Instagram, it's all about the visuals. So make sure you post high-quality photos of your product, use images or videos that align with the value you bring to your client, or some behind-the-scenes moments.

Quote with product to drive engagement in an organic Instagram post

To drive social media engagement for your brand on Instagram, use both Stories and Posts. Don't forget to caption, add your location, and use popular hashtags to make your posts more discoverable.

YouTube Marketing for Small Businesses

If you need to increase the visibility of your brand, consider the video platform YouTube. With 1.9 billion monthly active users, over 300 hours of videos uploaded every minute, and over a billion hours of video content being viewed daily, it has become the second-largest search platform and the second-most trafficked website on Google. (Source: HubSpot) Video gives your business a more organic identity online and dramatically increases the credibility of your brand.

Observe: video uploaded to YouTube

What to Post on YouTube

Get to know your competitors and your audience, and read the comments to help you determine which posts will resonate well with your followers.

There are different video genres used for online marketing. Onboarding videos, how-to videos, product videos, and testimonials, and these formats can all be used to drive a lot of engagement. Keep it short and to the point, preferably no longer than 2 minutes.

How Often Should You Share on YouTube?

Once again, quality trumps quantity. Your budget and available time to produce quality videos will determine how often you post to YouTube. Start slow, keep an eye on your referral traffic from YouTube, and if it's working, determine whether you should invest more.

Tips to Boost Engagement on YouTube

To give your videos a higher chance of ranking on YouTube, remember to optimize them. YouTube SEO can help increase important metrics like follower count, brand awareness, website visits, and revenue.

  • Use a catchy title and include a clear and concise video description with a call to action. The copy you enter will be read by search engines and anyone who finds your video online.
  • Take advantage of keywords.
  • Pick an appropriate image to use as a thumbnail for your video on YouTube. This image will show when the video appears in a search. Make sure it is clear, in focus, compelling and relevant to the content of the video.

You can easily build out your YouTube paid campaigns directly in the Google Ads interface with targeting options powered by the largest search engine worldwide and an excellent platform for social media marketing for small businesses.

Social Media Tools & Tracking

Social media tools will give you access to all the information you need to set a social media strategy that performs well for your business, targeting your business goals.

Social media tracking tools make it simple to track and measure your progress. Based on your account performance, these tools will assist you in making informed decisions as to the direction of your campaigns. Start by defining which social media metrics you'll be keeping track of before you start posting.

social media reporting example

Once you've set up your tracking metrics and chosen the most appropriate tools, you're set to go.

Final Thoughts

Social media is a powerful platform that can help you and your small business to build brand awareness and generate leads. Reach out if you need help with your social media strategy or help on Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram, or YouTube! We are here to help you and your small business grow.