FAQ: Social Media Management
We get a lot of the same questions about starting a social media strategy or developing a social media strategy for small businesses, so we wanted to put together a list of the top 10 most common questions.
Please reach out to us if you have further questions or questions that aren’t on here – we’re here for your business!
Top 10 Frequently Asked Questions About Social Media Marketing:
1. What social media platforms do I need to be on?
Well, it depends on the type of business you have, how much time & money you have to spend on creating content, responding & engaging with your audiences. If you don’t have a lot of time or money to hire an agency, perhaps you should be on the 1 or 2 you know you can manage properly. Master these first because if you can’t properly respond to people or consistently post on all platforms, it will hurt your online presence more than it would to not be on the platforms.
If you are more B2B, you should master LinkedIn first. Facebook is great because it is the largest active platform and FB is trying to make it so people never have to leave it to get the info they’re looking for. If you have a ton of pictures or can do short videos often, Instagram will be good for you. Pinterest generates a ton of traffic to your website, so if you’re an e-commerce site, Pinterest will be a good fit.
2. What time of day is best to post and how often should I post?
Again, it depends. Facebook is awesome because if you have over 30 page likes, it gives you that data; FB tells you what day and what time of day the majority of your followers are online, and that’s when you should post to take advantage of the most people seeing the content. Generally, people probably aren’t allowed to go on social media during work hours, so before work, lunch time, after work, after dinner, are good times to post.
Generally, it’s best to only post once a day. You’ll stay in the forefront of people’s minds, but won’t be too annoying. Twitter & Pinterest are exceptions; you’ll need to post 6-8 times a day to ensure your message is being heard on Twitter, and at least 3-4 times a day on Pinterest.
3. Do I have to use the same user handle on all social media platforms?
Yes. It’s better for brand consistency, and it’s much easier for your followers to find you on the different platforms to message/tag you and if it’s different, you could miss out on valuable engagement. If your name is taken, don’t sweat it too much, but try to find one that’s similar enough it’ll come up if people are searching for you. Additionally, you will want the same profile picture/logo so it’s easily identifiable that it’s you people are looking for – again brand consistency is super important in the digital space.
4. What kind of content should I post?
Again, every company is different, but I’ve found there are some general rules of thumb you can use to start off and then once you get comfortable, you can be a little more creative in your content planning.
Generally, you want to follow the 80/20 rule when posting content: post helpful, educational/informative info that is valuable to your audience 80% of the time, and promote your business 20% of the time. You don’t want to promote your business/talk about yourself all the time or people will quickly become annoyed and uninterested in your message. Think of being at a party: If you’re talking about yourself all the time, people will start avoiding you. Become interested in what’s important to your audience and post about that.
Post how-to videos, webinar type videos, client testimonials, relevant articles, pictures/videos of behind-the-scenes, celebrate awards/certifications/new employees, take advantage of “motivation mondays” or “fun fact fridays” to mix in some fun, light-hearted content. Post your blogs, company events, and general “call us today” posts the other 20%.
5. How Do I Get More Followers?
By giving people a reason to follow you! You’re asking for people’s most limited resource: time. So don’t waste it. Regardless of which network you’re talking about, it’s the quality not quantity of followers that matters. You need followers who will actually engage with your content, not just add to your follower count.
Remember that social media is a conversation, not a broadcast. Respond to your followers and interact with them. If they see there’s a real human who is responsive to their needs/questions, you’ll win their “follow” and business, and more importantly – because they feel valued, they will tell their friends & family about you too! That’s how you get more followers. Period.
6. My Business Is In A “Boring” Industry – Why Do I Need To Be On Social Media?
A. That’s where your followers are; 78% of Americans have at least 1 social media profile. Figure out your target market and be on the platform that has the majority of your target audience.
B. It generates a lot of brand awareness, exposure, and brand loyalty.
C. It boosts traffic to your website, which will help lead to conversions.
D. 85% of people will look up a business on FB to get contact info, learn more about them even before visiting your website or calling you. If you don’t have an active, consistent presence, you’ll miss out being found.
E. It’s a fantastic customer service tool. People want immediate answers to their questions and they’ll message your page. You can’t find a better opportunity to provide that kind of customer service.
F. Social Media pages are indexable on search engines like Google and are another great way of being found for SEO purposes.
7. Why Do Some Pages Have Checkmarks Beside Their Name On FB?
Facebook allows business pages to be verified. If you have more than 30 followers, have a website listed on your FB page, have an address listed on your FB page, you can be verified. It’s important to be verified for 2 reasons:
A. Facebook shows verified pages first in Facebook search results. So if your competitor is not verified, your page will be shown first – this is important because most people won’t scroll past the first few businesses listed.
B. It gives your followers confidence that they’re talking to the official business page and not a fan page, for example.
It’s easiest to verify your page by having FB call you with a 4 digit verification code; but it needs to be publically listed business phone number, not a cell phone of the owner. If that’s not an option, you can always verify your page by uploading an official document like your Business Tax Certificate, or your Articles of Incorporation – something that has your business name & address on it.
8. Do I Have To Pay For Facebook Ads?
Yes. Even if it’s only a little bit each month, you should invest in FB ads. On a platform like Facebook, you have to “pay to play” in many cases. In 2016 alone, organic reach dropped 52% for publishers, and that’s just larger media companies, let alone smaller business pages. And with Twitter and Instagram following in the footsteps of Facebook with an algorithmic feed, it’s becoming increasingly difficult to get your content seen organically.
But please keep in mind that if your advertising budget is small, you simply will not receive a ton of results! The more you spend, the more you receive, but it’s important to start somewhere because if you don’t have that added reach, you can’t expect to receive added engagement. So even though you can only spend $50 per month, do that and build once you have a larger advertising budget.
9. Why Do I Need A Social Media Strategy?
Simply put, your social media marketing strategy is your roadmap for why, who, and how your social media efforts will help you achieve your business objectives. Without a strategy in place, you’re just posting and hoping something sticks. With a strategy in place, you’re able to plan, execute and measure the effectiveness of your tactics, and use that information to refine and drive your efforts forward.
The key to crafting a social media marketing strategy is striking a balance between the needs of your audience and the goals of the business. Here are a few starting points when creating your strategy:
A. Identify specifically who your target audience is and what their needs are – how can you solve their problems?
B. Define your objective (ex. brand awareness, driving traffic, engaging & building relationships, etc.)
C. Identify what types of content resonates best with your target audience and post a mix of that content.
D. Define what you want your followers to know about your brand
E. Determine how you’ll measure effectiveness (ex. shares, comments, messages, advertising success)
10. How Can I Make Social Media Marketing Easier?
There are several tools you can use to manage the marketing yourself, or you can hire an agency such as Aliro Marketing 🙂 to take care of this for you. Hiring an agency helps free up your time to run your business, and gives you peace of mind knowing we will be keeping up with all the rapidly changing algorithms and social media changes for you!
If you’d like to manage the social media yourself, here are some great tools:
A. Hootsuite or Social Pilot to schedule your posts in advance – this is great so you can plan/schedule your posts all at one time to free up your week, or if you go on vacation, your posts can still go out as normal. You can attach FB personal & business pages, Twitter, LinkedIn personal & business pages, and Google+ pages.
Tailwind is a great tool to schedule your pins on Pinterest – there’s a desktop and mobile version, but is unfortunately only a paid feature; each Pinterest account is $15/month. But you can even schedule repins on both desktop and mobile versions – repins count as part of your multiple posts per day, so Tailwind makes it super easy to manage Pinterest!
B. Canva – this is important to create eye-catching graphics for your posts. There is a paid version that gives you more templates, but a free version works ok too. And there is a desktop & mobile version for your convenience.
C. Ripl – this is cool and very easy to create short videos and slideshows. Again, there is a paid version but also a free version. As far as I know, it’s only available on mobile app.
D. Animoto is an easy way to make longer videos. They offer a free trial then you need to pick a plan that fits your needs and budget; the plans range $8/month – $34/month so it’s very affordable.