Facebook, Instagram, marketing, Pinterest, small business, social media

The Top 3 Challenges for Small Businesses on Social Media

Challenge #1: Not Enough Time

Whether your business is pulling you in different directions and you never sit down to plan your social media or just being on social media alone distracts you, finding time is hard. That adorable picture of your neighbor’s dog or your friend’s nephew is just too cute not to comment! You also have to fight the urge to check every notification and message while on social media. It’s hard to focus on the task at hand.

Solution 1: Put it in your calendar! Yes, simple but effective. Block out several times in a week to work on social media content, engagement, and strategic planning. Set a reminder in your calendar and treat it like you would any other appointment. Make a point not to look at those notifications and messages until you are done!

Solution 2: For the planning and posting part of your task, use a planner. You still have to go into the platform to engage but you can plan out and create your content off of social media and all the distractions it brings. Many have free and low costs plans. Some I’ve tried and liked are Loomly and Hootsuite.

Challenge #2: No Formal Social Media Strategy

Throwing posts out there without being consistent and considering your audience is a shot in the dark. You may get lucky occasionally but overall you will be putting in a LOT of work for very little return. You need to have a consistent social media strategy to see real results.

Solution 1: Sit down the beginning of each year and create a formal plan just like you would for any other part of your business. It should include:

• Business goals
• Audience you are trying to reach
• What your competitors are doing
• Social media channels you will use
• Content type
• Weekly/monthly content themes
• Metrics for tracking success

Solution 2: Invest in having a social media strategist create a plan for you to implement. Many small businesses can’t afford to hire someone to do all their social media but hiring a social media strategist once a year to give you a plan to follow can be well worth the minor investment.

Challenge #3: What platforms should I be on?

• 2.5 billion – the number of social media users worldwide
• 2.9 million – the number of social media users in the U.S.

(statistics from statista.com)

No matter your business, your customers are on social media. There are so many places to be on social media though, how do you know which ones are right for your business? Do you do them all or just a few? Just deciding where to be can be overwhelming.

Solution 1: The advice I give my clients is start small. Do one platform well and once you have that down and are comfortable with it, add another. Most small businesses don’t need to be on more than 2-3 platforms total.

Solution 2: Go where your audience is. Most businesses have an audience on Facebook so you can always start there. Whether you need to be on Instagram, Pinterest, Twitter, or any others really depends on your business and who you are looking to sell to. Where do those people hang out? To find out more demographic information on each platform, check out Spout Social’s report.

Doing social media well can be tough for a busy business owner but it is an important marketing tool that can no longer be ignored or done without a strategy. Schedule time to do it, stick to a strategy, and find where your audience hangs out and you will start reaping the rewards.

 

Have any questions? Feel free to reach out to me: LoriCaralis@gmail.com

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