Before you begin…

Getting involved with social media, & deciding on the level of focus you should give to it, should be weighed up against what you aim to achieve from it.

You will most likely have more than one goal in mind but you should focus on a few main goals & steer you communications towards these.

The first question you need to ask yourself, before you go through the process of researching best practices & putting them into practice, is is social media going to prove beneficial to your business?
If your target market are consumers who are not in any way tech savvy or if you are in the fortunate position that your trade is already operating at full capacity then the answer is likely going to be no.

If you decide it is worth getting involved then you have to ask what your main goals are.
A sample few headline ones are as follows:

  • Getting awareness of your offering out to a wider audience
  • Engaging with consumers who are already familiar with and/or are actively availing of your service
  • Building relevant contacts; people already operating successfully in a similar sphere to yourself or who have specific expertise you can learn from
  • Driving online sales
  • Boosting your own public image
  • Having a springboard to voice your opinions or concerns to interested listeners

At the end of the day, it is a marketing exercise for your business, to boost awareness of & interest in it. You are going to be investing time in your social media activity so you should be thinking early on about what reward or outcome you want to achieve from these efforts.

The great thing about social media is the measurability element. Facebook analytics gives you an insight into how many people your messages are getting through to, how many of your links get clicked, how quickly your following is growing & how impactful any Facebook ad campaigns you have put in place have been (Facebook insights will be discussed again further, but if you want further info on this do get in contact).

Set out where you see your company within the industry you are operating in & versus competitors. You obviously don’t want to directly mimic what your competitors are doing but at the same time is worth investigating how they are going about the social media activity, what they are doing well & what you can be doing to get that step ahead.

Once you have decided on what sort of communicator you want your brand to be, who you want to target & what you hope to achieve from your efforts, the next step will be getting your profiles set up & mapping out a plan for this strategy.

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