Social media platforms provide a fantastic opportunity for small business growth, however a considered plan is required to really optimise what they have to offer. We’ve put together this blog as a “Where to start” for business owners with their small business social media marketing strategy.
When it comes to social media marketing, the following quote perfectly sums it up: Tactics without strategy is the noise before defeat – Sun Tzu
1. Establish Your Goals
You should know your business goals. Whether you manage your social media marketing yourself or have a marketing partner to manage it for you, you need to establish realistic goals that you wish to achieve through your social media marketing.
A business generally has one or more of these 6 objectives behind their social media strategy:
Drive website traffic
Create brand awareness
Build audience trust
Provide customer support
Once you know why you are doing what you are doing, you can do it better. Each post you publish will be as a result of one or more of your established goals.
2. Create Audience Persona(s)
Many business owners underestimate the value of audience persons. You should not start a social media marketing campaign without understanding who your targeted audience is.
An ‘audience persona’ or ‘buyer persona’ describes the attributes of your target audience in as much detail as possible.
Understanding the habits and behaviours of your prospects helps you find and create personalised content especially for them. Depending on the nature of your business, you may have to create more than one audience persona.
3. Select the Right Social Media Platforms
As of 2019, 7 social media platforms dominate. Each has hundreds of millions of active users, and its own unique strengths. For example, Facebook has more subscribers than YouTube; however it can’t beat YouTube when it comes to video content marketing.
You shouldn’t limit your business to just one platform, having said this, you don’t need to be active on every social media platform. Use your business goals and audience personas to identify which social media platforms your target audience are on, and also what your capacity is for consistent content creation and distribution.
4. Identify and Study Your Competitors
Studying your competitors will help you identify market trends, establish what is and isn’t working for their audience, and which platforms your competitors are on.
Take out time to thoroughly analyse what your competition is doing. Do not go out to copy what they are doing, but to do it better, and learn from what they are doing.
5. Set Up Your Social Media Accounts
You will need data from all first three steps to implement this step efficiently. While setting up a business profile on a social media platform is not difficult, there are ways to optimise how you do this. It’s worth doing a bit of research.
This step will include having logos properly sized and header images created, and completing text boxes with company information overviews. Much of the information should already be on your website – don’t feel you need to re-invent the wheel!
6. Plan and Schedule Content
Planning and scheduling are two different parts of content marketing.
In planning, you have to determine the content that is relevant to your business and attractive for your target audience. In scheduling, you have to plan which content to publish, and when. You also need to establish how many posts you are going to post each day, to each platform. This again will be determined by your capacity to create relevant content.
Consistency is an essential element of social media posting.
7. See What Works and What Doesn’t
Marketing is a continuous process, and you are guaranteed of constant changes and development. An important part of each social media marketing campaign includes gathering and analysing data and using it to improve upon the next one.
8. Run Social Media Advertisements
After you have succeeded in creating the initial presence of your business on social media channels, include paid advertisements. Organic social media reach has plummeted over the past few years, so an element of paid advertising is critical
Every platform offers paid promotion, and it should be a part of your social media marketing strategy. However, make sure you first fully understand your market and audience to get maximum return on investment.
There is more to each point highlighted above when structuring your small business social media marketing strategy, however you need to start with understanding the basics, and then work into the detail from here.
At Woya Digital we believe in making business growth through digital marketing affordable for all businesses. We do this through our pay monthly marketing packages, with no upfront investment. Find out more about us and how we can support your business growth!
Businesses (especially smaller ones) have to do whatever they can to get their name heard, and with the internet providing everyone the opportunity to carve out their own little space online, it can often be difficult to stand out from the crowd.
When targeting customers or potential customers in a specific geographic area, local citations can be key to a business ranking highly on Google maps. A small focus on SEO(Search Engine Optimisation) can boost your profile on Google and help you feature higher than your competitors.
What is a Local Citation
A ‘local citation’ isn’t a Google term, but instead refers to a really basic form of marketing on the internet. It is simply an instance of your business’ NAP (that is: business Name, Address and Phone number) appearing online – be that on your website or on others. This may be in business directories, press articles, advertiser sites or reviews of your firm.
How does a Local Citation benefit a Local Business
Aside from it being a small ad boost, every time someone sees your information; a local citation helps reiterate to Google (and therefore Google Maps) that you are a leader in your area and that you are a genuine business. Google’s algorithms are well developed to identify spam and disingenuous entries and so good, organic reach through local citations is an easy way for it to understand proper local businesses.
What are the Elements of a Local Citation
The three main elements of a local citation are your NAP: business Name, Address and Phone number. The key is to keep them entirely consistent throughout all citations online – any differentiator will break the link between the citation and it relating directly to your business. It may be worth considering therefore if you have a ‘Ltd’ in your name or a space/unusual capitalisation/sub-brands, that you instead revert to one shorter name for your public-facing communications to avoid any confusion.
Other elements that may be included in citations (but aren’t imperative) include e-mail addresses and links to social media profiles. Where you can, keep the names of such profiles consistent and ensure you refer to yourself in the same way across all of your marketing.
Why Local Citations Matter
Local citations are the best way for Google’s automated algorithms to understand who you are and where you are; and that you’re genuine! The internet is full of bots and false entries, and citations are genuine reviews to show you’re not one of them. Citations alone are responsible for about 10% of Google’s decision in who to rank where on Maps, and with 76% of visitors accessing local results and then visiting one of the businesses featured within 24hrs, it’s a no-brainer that it’s an area of your online presence worth investing in!
Search marketing, SEO or search engine optimisation helps websites to rank well in Google and other search engines. At Woya Digital we are specialists in small business growth through digital marketing, including Local SEO services. We make SEO services affordable for small businesses through our pay monthly marketing packages, with no upfront investment. Find out more about how we can support your business growth!
Content marketing is a vital component of creating brand awareness and attracting customers online and off. Small business content marketing, in particularly, is important for growth and visibility.
Check out any successful brand on the internet today and you’ll find a host of different content, pushed out on various platforms, that is designed to delight, attract and connect with their audience.
What is Content Marketing
Content marketing is about creating relevant and useful content for your audience that is consistent with your brand and its place in the market.
Content marketing isn’t just your website blurb, your blog or your social media posts. It includes all forms of marketing content such as video, images, infographics …
Why is it Important
There are a million reasons (and more) why you should have plenty of content to support your marketing. In essence, it is designed to improve engagement with your business and create more sales, nurturing loyal customers who stick with your brand and benefit from its products or services for a long period of time.
Content marketing can also help cement your reputation in the marketplace. For example, if you are providing how-to videos for your customers relating to a particular product, this kind of content creates a connection and dependence that promotes loyalty.
Great content is widely shared. Create the perfect social media or blog post and you can expect your fans and followers to share it with their friends and followers.
Content marketing is also used to improve performance on search engines like Google. It’s more than simple keywords however, and means producing content that is relevant and useful and which people want to link to:
Buyers are more likely to trust and engage with your business if you create good content, especially if it contains data and analysis
Why You Need a Content Marketing Strategy
The mistake many businesses make is not having a plan for creating and posting their content – it’s all done ad hoc. While you may have an occasional hit with a piece of content, success is largely down to luck.
Having a content marketing strategy in place means that you are more likely to produce strong, long-lasting assets that serve your business long term. If you want to achieve business growth, however, your marketing strategy needs to be fully fleshed out, coherent and relevant.
How To Put Together a Content Marketing Strategy
Great content is vital in all parts of the sales funnel. It is important to understand why you are producing a particular piece of content and what it is designed to do for your business and your customer. This understanding needs to be as specific as possible.
The first step is to define your mission and goals, outlining your target audience, what kind of content you are going to produce for them and what you want it to deliver for them.
For example, let’s say you run a recruitment agency. Your audience may be CEOs and managers. Your mission may be to provide them with content that helps them get their dream job. The result will be that your audience will be better prepared and competitive in the job-hunting market and will choose your agency for support.
You also need to really understand your audience and build specific personas for them. That way you can tailor individual content for specific personas, improving your reach and really connecting with that persona on a more direct level.
A real challenge for many small business owners is being able to plan, create, manage and publish their content, according to their timeline plan, across various different platforms. Content marketing can quickly get messy if you don’t have a joined-up approach and a clear idea of what is happening at any particular time.
Finally, you must be able to measure results. There’s no point in creating content if you don’t know if it is effective or not. This should be an underpinning principle of your entire marketing strategy.
This is What We Do!
If you are looking for support with your content marketing strategy and execution, you’ve found the right blog! Head to our Woya Digital website to find out more about us and then get in touch to discuss with us how we can help you grow your small business with effective content marketing!
When it comes to marketing any small business, social media should be an important part of your strategy. It’s not only a cost effective solution, it has the potential to support you in reaching a massive audience in a small amount of time.
Get your strategy right and you should be able to achieve a strong return on investment, boost your brand visibility online and increase sales.
Instagram is used by about 60% of the top brands in the world. The platforms visual nature allows you to plug into marketing opportunities that have real value in today’s competitive world.
Building a balanced strategy to grow your business takes a lot of planning and work. Part of this means understanding the right way to construct posts and other content like Instagram Stories.
The good news is, like any other social media platform, there are several key ways to boost your Instagram visibility.
Here are our top 5 tips:
1. Optimise Your Name Field
Your Instagram name field is actually separate from your Instagram handle. This means you can optimise the name field with relevant keywords that highlight what your business does. Instagram users search keywords on the platform, so using keywords in your name field means you have more chance of showing up in searches.
2. Optimise your Bio
You have limited words to ensure your bio hits the mark. It pays to put some thought into this and optimise the content. Again, it’s all about showing up in potential searches so use hashtags and relevant keywords.
Don’t be afraid to experiment by changing your bio every so often and measuring how this improves engagement.
3. Add Location Tags
If you want to attract the right people to your posts and Instagram stories, don’t forget location tagging. This doesn’t just have to be where your business is based. It might be where your target audience or customers are hanging out, for example, at a special event such as a festival or exhibition.
4. Use Hashtags
Hashtags are essential to boost your Instagram visibility and the stats prove it. Putting just one hashtag in your post has the potential to increase engagement by 12.6% compared to a post without one. You can add 30 hashtags on one Instagram post and 10 to an Instagram Story. Make use of different relevant hashtags for different posts and research your hashtags to ensure you are making use of the most effective and relevant ones.
It is also a good idea to create your own branded hashtag. You can do this by combining an important keyword and your business name.
5. Follow and Engage
You do not exist in a vacuum on social media and it’s important to engage with and follow other brands and individuals that complement your own. Instagram can predict what type of profiles you might like and show them in the ‘suggest’ and ‘because you follow’ sections. This allows you to be more focused in how you engage on social media and improves the relationships you make when building your following.
Digital marketing is a challenge for any small business but understanding what works and what can improve your reach will make a big difference. For affordable digital marketing support for your small business, get in touch with the Woya Digital team.
October, November, December …. 2020 – yes we are only 3 months away!! So you’re feeling motivated and excited for all the opportunity that 2020 is going to bring, for you to grow your small business – awesome!
In order to really set yourself up for success and maximum growth next yearhowever, there are a few marketing basics that you need to put in place to give your small business the best possible chance:
SMALL BUSINESS GROWTH TIP #1 – MOBILE FRIENDLY WEBSITE
Non-negotiable! Human beings are on their phones constantly to search, discover and buy products and services that they need or want. If they come across your website and it’s not mobile-friendly, they are just going to bounce. Opportunity lost!
SMALL BUSINESS GROWTH TIP #2 – SEO
Where do you go when you’re searching online – Google of course! SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) or search marketing is the process of continual efforts applied to the backend and on your website that helps it rank higher in online search results, with the aim of getting to the top, or as close to the top as possible. Ask yourself: Do you ever scroll further than the first page of Google search results? No, neither do we!
SMALL BUSINESS GROWTH TIP #3 – LOCAL SEO
Local SEO is regular SEO, however is for businesses that serve or work within a particular area, so is locality focussed. For example if you are a gym based in Chichester, you would specifically want to reach customers in Chichester and nearby areas.
SMALL BUSINESS GROWTH TIP #4 – SOCIAL MEDIA MARKETING
Facebook, Instagram, Twitter …. your business need to be present on social media! Don’t feel that you need to be active on absolutely every social media platform. Identify your customers and which platforms they are likely to be on, and focus your time and energy into these. Marketing is no longer a one way street. Customers want to engage with your brand, be entertained and have a more personal connection with your business. Social media platforms allow you to run campaigns to specifically target your customer market, so any budget you put into a paid advert or boost, will generate a better ROI than just for example, an advert placed in a newspaper (smart marketing!). There is so much noise online that you do need to invest some budget into paid social media marketing to really make the most of the opportunity.
The 4 points above are all fine and well, I hear you say, but what will they cost me as a small business owner?
Understanding that new and small businesses often have limited budget, yet desperately still need the services above, we have put together marketing packages with you guys in mind. All our packages are pay monthly, with no upfront investment, meaning that as a small business you still have access to awesome digital marketing services without compromising on quality!
We would love you to get in touch to discuss your 2020 business goals, and how we can support and guide you in achieving them (we’re a friendly Chichester based bunch!)
We also have an awesome Instant FREE SEO Site Audit Report that you can take advantage of, where we’ll send you a report to highlight all the things that can be improved on your website!
Do you regularly post blogs to your business website? This is one way to improve your website performance and optimise for SEO, as well as boost the reputation of your business.
Blogs are not only great for improving online visibility but are a valuable asset when combined with social media.
Here’s our quick checklist to help you structure and produce effective blog posts:
1. Establish Your Goals
Do not push out blogs simply because you think you have to post something! Establish what you want to achieve through your blog, and identify what benefit your blog will present the reader. Quality, original content is the name of the game! Identify your audience and deliver content that will answer a question or problem that they may have.
Ask yourself two important questions:
What is important to my audience?
What problems/questions do my audience have?
2. Create a Catchy Title
If you are targeting a particular keyword for your blog, you ideally need to include this in your title to help boost SEO. Choose a catchy title that tells readers what your blog is about, and will encourage people to read on or link through from social media. Keep it fairly short and direct.
3. Create Your Introduction
All good books and short stories start with a great hook. With blogs, a short introduction to let readers know what your blog is about is as important as the title. If you want them to read on, a strong but short introduction lets the reader know they are in the right place. Keep your sentence structure simple and to the point.
4. Break the Blog Structure into Sections
You don’t want a whole, thick block of text on your blog. It’s difficult to read and can put readers off before they even start. Break your blog into smaller sections under relevant subheadings which is easy to digest. If possible, include your focus keyword into a blog header or two to boost SEO.
Keep the text for each section short and to the point as with your introduction. Don’t let paragraphs run on too long, and keep your focus topic in mind.
5. Include an External Link
Individuals can be reticent about including external links in their blogs as they think they have the potential to direct the reader away from their site. Including an external link to a reputablesource, however is good for SEO and provides more quality content for your reader linked to the topic you are blogging about.
6. End With a Conclusion
Don’t just let your blog post finish abruptly. Summarise some of your main points to highlight your point. A bullet-pointed list of the main points can work quite well if you aren’t sure how to put this information together.
7. Include Something about your business
You never know who will read your blog or where your blog will end up being seen or shared. Following your blog conclusion include a short section about your business, something that links into the subject of the blog. Include a link which allows the reader to click through to your main website if they want to find out more about your business. You could also add a feedback section where readers can engage with you and leave comments of their own.
8. Add Sharing Buttons
Give readers the chance to share and tell their friends and colleagues about your post by including social media sharing buttons on all your blog pages. This is easy to do and there are plenty of widgets out there that can automatically add sharing software into your code.