Social Media has developed to become an invaluable marketing tool. Whether your business is just starting out or if you’re trying to grow to your business social media is a really useful and low cost marketing platform. For this post we’ve compiled 7 Top Tips that we hope will help you become successful at social media marketing.

1. Have a Strategy

Many small businesses believe they don’t need a social media strategy however regardless of size if you use these platforms it’s important to plan out what you post. Do some research before you begin posting, think about some targets for what you would like to achieve via social media and how you intend to achieve those goals. Plan ahead and prepare your content in advance so you don’t need to rush into creating things at the last minute.

2. Make it useful & informative

Rather than trying to sell your products or services on social media make your posts and interactions with followers more informative and helpful. People are more likely to interact if you post things that they can learn from or which they find interesting.

3. Make it interactive

Twitter Poll FeatureThe easiest way to get your followers to interact is by posting interactive content! It seems simple but by changing a status to a question you increase the chances of getting comments or replies. Most social media platforms now offer the option to post polls, not only does this get potential customers to engage but it also provides you with valuable information and data as to how your followers think.

4. Timing is everything

Tr10 ScheduledPostRefer back to your social media strategy to find out when is the best time of year to post your content. Think about relating your content to holidays or specific days of the year. You should also bear in mind what time of day to publish your posts, posting at lunch time or after work can significantly increase the amount of people that see your post as more people are online then! Facebook even offers a “Scheduled Post” feature where you can set the time and date of upcoming posts so you don’t need to be online at that specific time.

5. Sometimes less is more!

When it comes to social media it’s easy to fall in to the trap of posting a lot of worthless information. What is important is the quality and consistency of the content rather than the quantity! If you post content that your followers find useful or interesting they are much more likely to engage and therefore increase your social media reach.

6. Use the feedback tools

Use the built in tools to evaluate how your content performs. If you see that a certain kind of post gets a lot of like or views then think about why that might be and try to recreate that in your future posts. You can also use this data to keep track of your goals and targets in your social media strategy. If you see that a post is really popular, don’t be afraid to share it again in the future or you can usually pin certain posts/items to the top of your page.

7.Respond to feedback

Negative feedback on social media can be a good thing. It sounds strange but if your business receives a negative review or comment it offers you a chance to respond and resolve the issue whilst showing your followers how well you deal with feedback. According to research 83% of complainers say they like or love it when brands follow up with a response or apology, meaning responding to feedback could really improve customer retention.

Finally, treat your social media platforms as the voice of your business!

Social Media can be a very rewarding marketing platform as you can see results almost immediately and you can get feedback from your customers in a more informal way. Treat social media as the voice of your business and try to make your interactions with followers reflect that.

We hope you've found these tips useful, if you feel there's anything we've missed we'd love to hear it.

Let us know on our Facebook or Twitter pages!

Jargon buster:

Blog: Blog is a word that was created from two words: “web log.” Blogs are usually maintained by an individual or a business with regular entries of content on a specific topic, descriptions of events, or other resources such as graphics or video. "Blog" can also be used as a verb, meaning to maintain or add content to a blog.

Engagement: A metric used to describe the amount interaction a post receives. On Facebook engagement includes, likes, comments and shares, whilst on Twitter it includes follows, retweets, favourites and likes.

Hashtag: A hashtag is a tag used on a variety of social networks as a way to annotate a message. A hashtag is a word or phrase preceded by a “#" (i.e. #InboundMarketing). Social networks use hashtags to categorize information and make it easily searchable for users.

Link Building: Link building is an aspect of search engine optimization in which website owners develop strategies to earn links to their site from other websites with the hopes of improving their search engine ranking. Blogging has emerged as a popular method of link building.

Reach: Your reach online is the amount of people that see your posts.

Search Engine Optimization:Search engine optimization is the process of improving the volume or quality of unpaid traffic to a website from search engines.

Vlogging: Vlogging or a vlog is a piece of content that employs video to tell a story or report on information. Vlogs are common on video sharing networks like YouTube.