You start a business and decide to market it online using social media. Kudos to you. That’s a step in the right direction seeing how there are approximately six million active users on Facebook in Kenya. Who wouldn’t want to use that number to their advantage? Learning social media best practices will make you succeed in your endeavours.

Social media can be quite overwhelming, especially if you are starting out. Whether you are creating new pages for your business or you’ve been doing it for some time, and you are not sure of what you are doing, the frustration is real.

Creating a valuable page with relevant information takes time and hard work. The reason why people find it hard to maintain an online presence and don’t see business value from social media is that they don’t prepare in advance. They start with a blank canvas and randomly upload content without tying it back to the marketing goals.

Don’t Buy Likes For Your Page

I have seen pages on Facebook with 500,000 likes, but when I look through the posts, I see no reactions or engagements. This is so worrying because it shows:

  1. You don’t understand your audience and your content isn’t resonating with them.
  2. You’re creating general irrelevant content.
  3. You’re not sure what success looks like. Many times people copy someone else’s page assuming they’ll get the same results.

What then are you supposed to do if you’re starting out or have a page that doesn’t get engagement?

First of all, you need to breathe. Success isn’t an overnight thing. You have to put in the work and be patient, not expecting instant wins.

Best Practices For Social Media

These six steps will help you come up with a social media strategy that will help you meet your business goals.

1. Start With Your Goal in Mind

There is no way you’ll measure the success of anything if you don’t know what you are working towards achieving. That’s a basic rule: in life, relationships, and even in your career.

The same applies to social media. Setting goals helps come up with next steps and strategies of how to achieve them. Businesses have different goals. One social media strategy that is working for one company might not necessarily work for yours because you could be tackling different marketing challenges.

Start with the end in mind, then figure out how to achieve it.

2. Know Your Audience

If you are using a general approach to reach any and everyone because you think your product can cater to everyone’s needs, you will fail miserably. It will be costly and waste a lot of your time.

You’d rather have a small number of targeted customers who will buy from you than reach the masses when you’re looking for clients.

Start small by thinking: where does your target audience live? What do they do? What are their pain points? How will your content help them move closer to making a purchase decision?

The minute you start making deeper connections with your audience, the faster you’ll start seeing positive results in your business.

3. Be Clear on Your Message

Once you know who you are targeting, the next thing to do is clarify your message. You want to come off as a business that cares about people. Don’t try and sell. In this day, consumers are aware of what they want. They are more informed and will research on their own before they can make any purchase decisions.

So, why not be a problem solver? Your message should solve the challenges customers are facing and speak to their internal fears or motivations. This way, you’ll get more engagement on your page which can convert to sales if you nurture that relationship with your audience.

4. How Much Do You Want To Spend?

If you are trying to get organic reach on your important posts, you might get frustrated waiting. Social media has become a pay to play platform. The amount of content created and updated has become way too much to absorb.

You must set aside money to boost your most important posts to have the right people seeing it. If someone is managing the ads for you, remember you will have to factor in that additional fee.

5. Create a Content Strategy

This is another important part you can’t afford to ignore that will make or break your social media efforts. Remember the goals I mentioned up there, use them to come up with content ideas.

Pick the right mix of your content types: images, texts, videos or links.

You also don’t need to create your content from scratch. Curated content can help you save time and money.

6. Measure and Analyze

When you’re setting the goals, you’ll have set Key Performance Indicators that will help you measure the success of your social media efforts.

Give your plan and strategy at least three months before tweaking it to see what’s working and make necessary changes on what isn’t.

Testing is an integral part when it comes to digital marketing.

Never Give Up

Remember, you have to start small to make it big. Consistency is key here. You might think you are far behind, but you’ll get there.

Until next time.