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Social Media Marketing

Social Media Marketing: Is It Right for Your Business? | Written By: Mary Ann Cipressy

As a small business owner you are faced with the daunting task and challenge of growing your business. Many of you also work in your business doing such things as servicing your clients, doing the bookkeeping and other record keeping, that it seems you have little time to work on your business.  You also hear that you just have to be doing social media marketing. You must be on Instagram and have a Facebook business page. You read many articles, take webinars or read blogs all in an effort to find the best way to market your business and gain new sales and customers. Don’t you love the ones that say you can double your business in 5 easy steps? Or double your business by spending 1 hour a week dong these easy simple things? They really do not tell you much that you can actually apply to your business. There is so much information out there, that a person can get information overload where you are unable to discern what the best option for you and your business is.

So just how do you know if social media marketing is right for you? There are a lot of variables that effect this answer. Since social media marketing is about relationships that is where we will start. You have to build a network, your audience so to speak. If your business is already well known this will be easier and happen faster. If you are just starting out then your network/audience is going to be much smaller and will take time to build. This is one of the key’s to your effectiveness and success at social media marketing.

The next key is content. How much content, what that content will be is important to know before you start. Every business is different when it comes to content. What you do not want to do is to rely heavily on promoting your product or services. You need to know what your network/audience is interested in that relates to your business. You want to be sure that your content is geared towards them. Too many business owners do not have enough of the right content when they first start out so the promote their product or service which is not very effective.

Another key is having a plan and a strategy. You do not want to start your social media marketing without having plan and strategy in place. You will need to develop goals and objectives. For what purpose are you doing social media marketing for besides sales?

Social media marketing is not free. While the use of the outlets are free, you are investing time and effort into your marketing. You also need to consider an ad budget to grow your audience/network as well as promoting your product/services. This is not something you will want to implement right away but you need to plan for it as your business grows.

When you have these keys in place then you should begin your social media marketing efforts. Your next step is to choose which outlets you are going to use. There is a bit of a learning curve involved so take the time to learn how to use the outlets you have chosen. Remember you will need to be patient as social media marketing is a long term endeavor. If you are looking for short term, immediate increase in sales then social media marketing is not the best option for you.

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