Having a strong social media presence can be hugely beneficial to your business. It can attract more customers and clients, provide you with customer feedback, and even build brand loyalty. 

Unfortunately, it’s not an easy thing to manage and the finer rules are changing all the time. In this article, we’ll break down our top 5 social media tips for small businesses — all so you can manage your socials with ease. 

Those tips are:

  • Have a plan
  • Know your audience
  • Build relationships
  • Quality over quantity
  • Start a conversation

5 social media tips for small businesses

Now you know what the tips are, let’s have a closer look so you can best use them for your business.

Have a plan

Just like with any other aspect of your business, having a plan or goal can provide direction. Your social media strategy is no different. 

In fact, without a plan it’s much harder to track any positive progress you make — or know why you achieved it. 

So instead of just posting aimlessly and hoping for the best, use the following to make the most of your social media efforts. 

Make sure your goals are SMART

To make the most of your business goals, you need to make them SMART. This stands for:

  • Specific
  • Measurable
  • Achievable
  • Relevant
  • Time-constrained

These criteria help change “grow the social media” into “increase Instagram followers by 20% in three months”. Where the first goal leaves you directionless and not sure where to start, the second example is clear and straightforward. 

Even if you don’t meet your SMART objectives, you can use your metrics to see how close you came. For example, if your followers grew by 15% you know you’re on the right track.

On the other hand, if they didn’t grow at all you know you need to change tactics.

Have a content calendar

Part of your plan should include a content calendar. Posting regularly is important for keeping current followers engaged. 

You don’t want to post too much, because this can damage the quality of your content. At the same time, post too little and you may not attract a large enough audience. 

Making (and sticking to) a content calendar is a great solution, because you know exactly when you should be posting. 

Know your audience

Just like marketing a product or service, you need to target the right audience with your social media. That means knowing who your audience is, and what they like. 

If you’re not too sure about what your audience is interested in, then try doing some primary market research. Using a survey, for example, can inform and develop your customer profile. 

The customer profiles you create help you understand how best to speak to your audience. They can shape your content’s tone of voice, or even decide which platforms are best for your business. 

For reference, older audiences are more likely to use Facebook, while younger audiences might use TikTok. 

Build relationships

So many businesses simply post content on their social media schedule, and then forget about it. Think of your social media as a plant. It needs a daily eye to keep it healthy and growing

Your audience will interact with your posts outside of your schedule, leaving comments and sharing it to their friends. It can seem like extra effort, but responding to these comments is a great way to build better relationships

It also lets your audience know that you care about them, rather than their money. If a customer feels respected and appreciated, they’re much more likely to remain loyal to your brand

That’s not to say you need to spend all your time interacting with every person who comments on your posts, but respond where you can. This regular interaction satisfies the algorithm, which can show your content to even more people. 

Quality over quantity

You might think that “regularly posting content” means you need to post every day. It doesn’t. 

In fact, posting every day could mean that your content isn’t saying very much. Instead, it’s better to focus on uploading higher quality content every few days. 

High quality content can lead to better results, and also gets viewers more interested in your business. For example, what would you rather interact with? A wall of text that doesn’t tell you much, or a mixture of text and images that ask your opinion.

What is high quality content?

High quality content is something that creates engagement. The more people engage with your content, the more people will see it. But what makes a piece of content high-quality?

The best content is entertaining, informative, or both. You want to teach your audience something they didn’t know, or amuse them. Either of these methods catches and keeps the attention. 

Start thinking about how you can produce that type of content in your industry.

Start a conversation

While this doesn’t need to apply to every post, you should seek to start a conversation with your socials. Conversations drive all types of engagement, including likes, comments, and shares. 

People love giving their opinion on social media, and differences in opinion can spark big interactions. One easy way to do this is to run a poll

Find a topic related to your business. If you run a food truck, this could be as simple as saying “Does pineapple go on pizza?” It’s bound to cause discussion as viewers voice their opinions. 

Think about questions you can ask, and if they prompt your audience to provide their opinion. If so, it might make an engaging post. 

Tip for managing future success

With better social media, you might find that your business is earning more. Preparing for this ahead of time can help you stay on top of any sudden growth in interest.

Downloading the Countingup app is one way to do that. This two-in-one business current account and accounting software can make managing your business’s revenue much easier. 

It sorts all your transactions into handy, HMRC-compliant categories. Perfect for both watching your cash flow, and reporting your Self Assessment taxes. 
It’s got loads of other cool features too, why not download the app and find out for yourself?