Social Media Marketing & Small Business Blunders

Small Business Blunders

Small Business Blunders

If you spent any time doing social media marketing for your small business, then you’ve probably have seen the outlandish promises of how You Too Can Get 10,000 Fans! or how You Can Get 50,000 Twitter Followers overnight.   Seeing such claims while looking at your 30 or so Twitter Followers or Facebook Fans, may make you feel ready to throw in the towel.  But let’s get real, shall we?

As a small business — a retailer, a restaurant owner, an insurance sales person or someone whose business is dependent upon local area traffic —  you don’t need tens of thousands of fans or followers.  You need a strong core of current customers who know your products / services, who like what you do and they way you do it and who trust that if they refer a friend to you, you’re going to deliver.  Ideally, you want your fan and followers to become your online ambassadors and share information about you through their own social network. But most jeopardize the small tribe of fans or followers they do have rather than growing their online audience.

How? 
Typically, it stems from a lack of follow-through on a lot of little things that collectively stunt the growth of one’s fans and follower base.  Here are six small business blunders you can easily avoid or correct in your social media marketing efforts.

6 Social Media Marketing Blunders

1. No personal photo or a logo.  Social media marketing for your small business does not remove the need to be personable.  If anything, a more personal touch is required online.  No one wants to follow someone who didn’t take the time to upload a photo.  And while a logo, is better than nothing, it doesn’t add the warmth your smile can deliver.

2.  Photo is TOO personal.  You don’t want a photo of you and the gals having wine at a bar.  You want a professional photograph that communicates you’re in business and ready to serve your customers.

3.  You left the biography where you can add company information, professional skills or web links blank.  This is a bit like having a business card with just your name and no contact information.  Again, this is just another way to educate visitors about who you are, what you do, who benefits from your products and services and where they might visit online to learn more.  This is important information for you to share with all in your social network.

4.  You just broadcast about your business and don’t bother to converse with others.  They call it “social” media for a reason.  You need to s o c i a l i z e.  Chances are you do this everyday with your customers so this shouldn’t be a challenge.  Online this means you have to pay attention, re-tweet, respond to questions, contribute and comment on your social network.  If all you do is blast your own messages, people are going to turn away.

5.  You’re always in Sales Mode.  Again, there is an online etiquette that requires one to engage and share information and expertise with others.  Selling can happen, just not out of the gate and not all of the time.  First, you want to give people time to get to know you and feel they can trust you. So, tell them something they don’t know.  Share priceless gems of information.  Then you can pitch them to come into your store or your restaurant.

6.  You don’t socialize enough.  Yes, you run a small business and that can be a challenge.  But if you want social media to work for you, you have to put aside the time each week to be active on your social network, to share and participate. Make an appointment with your social tribe and deliver.

Correct or avoid these six blunders and you’ll see your social network grow.  I promise.

Do you find yourself committing any of these blunders?

Sheila Hibbard

Sheila Hibbard takes the fluff, hype and confusion out of marketing and social media. She provides small business owners with straight forward, no nonsense marketing guidance and techniques that produce results based on her 35 plus years in advertising, communications, research, strategic planning and social media. Author of Marketing Online Made Simple - WHO.

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  1. Pingback: Social media lends a whole lot of help to small businesses | Small Business Marketing Blog

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