Social media is all about humans connecting with each other and it is live and bustling with millions upon millions of people 24 hours a day. It's hard to think of a business, product or service that cant benefit from social media.
That said, getting started can be an overwhelming experience. There's a plethora of social media channels and avenues and each with its own learning curves, etiquette, marketing policies, content formats and so much more.
So where do you start?
This is where it can get really tricky. At this early stage, many businesses completely over face themselves, setting themselves up for an early defeat simply by signing up to too many social networks. After all, there are plenty of guides advising you to sign up to as many social networks as possible. Some will even offer you a list of "the top 50 social media sites you need for your business".
We're quite controversial and advise getting started with 1 single social network. Facebook.
The reason is simple. Facebook is not just THE giant of social media, it is our recommendation that every business needs to take Facebook seriously. We don't say that about any other social network.
To give you an idea of the size we are talking about, here's a list of social networks, ordered by monthly active users. (Actual figures from Statista.com. The green bars are just for display purposes).
Don't be surprised if this list surprises you. 😣
Most of you won't have even heard of some of the big players in that list. Most of you will be surprised to see Twitter and LinkedIn way down near the bottom. Many of you will wonder what the heck WhatsApp is even doing there in the first place. (Isn't that just a free messenger app?).
Social media is a complex animal. But one thing is a stand-out fact. Facebook is by far the number one source for social traffic which is why it is our recommendation for getting started.
Sure, we advise eventually branching out into other social networks - even if just for citations - but if you want to keep concise and make sure everything is set up properly then just go one social network at a time.
When you set up a social media network it's not just a case of filling out some fields and then leaving it alone. You need to work up an audience. That requires consistent content posting over several weeks. Once you have got your audience they then need tending too.
Our advice of starting with a single social network isn't without good reason. Unless you are fairly experienced and have gone through this process a few times, social media can be extremely overwhelming. It can eat hours upon hours of time and effort with seemingly producing any results.
If you start your social media journey with several accounts the chances of it becoming stressful and frustrating increase dramatically.
Whichever route you choose we've included a few generic pointers below that apply to pretty much all the social networks. (And keep an eye out for our full guide to social media coming very soon to the "marketing guides" section of this guide).
Generic Social Media Tips n Tricks.
1. Be consistent. Post every day on at least once a day.
2. Make sure your profile business picture and logo are up to date and consistent with all other social profiles.
3. Ensure all your details on the profile are filled out, don't leave blank spaces.
4. Create fresh content every day and always create rather than curate.
5. Ensure your NAP(name, address & Phone number)are all the same.
6. Answer all comments and messages as soon as possible.
7. Only one out of ten posts should be sales post of your product.
8. Do not ignore negative comments or reviews-use them to your advantage. And don't bite.
9. Be polite and warm at all times.
10. Keep your page personal, post pics of staff, etc. Keep it real.
11. Join groups that are relevant to your page.
12. Create informative blog posts and post them on your page.
13. Choose a call to action button for your page ie: call now or visit our website.
14. Keep your business page family-friendly with the profanity filter.