In our most recent #SMTLive Twitter chat, we put the spotlight onto how small businesses can achieve social media marketing success, and what SMBs can do to make their brands stand out on social.
To help us out with this one, we recruited the help of SMT influencer Deborah Sweeney, who's the CEO of MyCorporation (which is the account you'll see her tweeting from in this recap). MyCorporation provides online legal filing services for entrepreneurs and businesses, covering elements like corporation and LLC formation, DBA, and trademark and copyright filing services. You can find MyCorporation on Twitter at @MyCorporation and Deborah at @deborahsweeney.
Needless to say, the CEO of such a successful and intricate company knows a thing or two about social media marketing for small businesses in particular. So without further ado, here's our recap of our latest #SMTLive discussion.
Good morning/afternoon #SMTLive. We are excited for this chat, "Social Media for Small Businesses 101." @deborahsweeney CEO of @MyCorporation will be helping us lead the conversation. Let's get started... pic.twitter.com/CP261YJxxq— Social Media Today (@socialmedia2day) July 30, 2019
What is the current state of your social media strategy? (Does your brand have a social presence? What platforms are you on? Do you have an in-house team? Do you outsource?)
Q1 - What is the current state of your social media strategy? (Does your brand have a social presence? What platforms are you on? Do you have an in-house team? Do you outsource?) #SMTLive pic.twitter.com/n8vdrscnBa— Social Media Today (@socialmedia2day) July 30, 2019
As you can see below, Sweeney spoke about how her company's social media initiatives are based in-house, and cover a wide range of platforms including Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and LinkedIn. Posting close to every single day works best for MyCorp, but might not work best for everyone.
We try to post daily! But find that 3-4 times a week on our main channels works for us! #SMTLive— EID Visions, Inc. (@EIDVisions) July 30, 2019
For @EIDVisions, for instance, three or four times a week does the trick.
Ed cals are an absolute must! Do you help manage social for multiple clients? #SMTLive— MyCorporation (@MyCorporation) July 30, 2019
Having an effective content calendar that you can look back on when times get hectic seems like a great idea as well, especially if you're an agency with multiple clients. Planning is key in terms of social media management for small businesses - and no matter how small the business, keeping track of multiple social strategies can be complicated in order for the strategies to be most effective.
Which platform has been the most consistently successful for your business? Why do you think that is?
A2: Our most consistently successful platform has always been Facebook. It’s where most of our customers are, and a space where they often PM us with questions or concerns that they may have. #SMTLive pic.twitter.com/6NxNY6aWbB— MyCorporation (@MyCorporation) July 30, 2019
Deborah shared here that for MyCorp, their consistently successful platform has always been Facebook. That's probably because it's where most of their customers are as well, which is key when deciding what platforms to focus on most.
We are learning more and more about strategy LinkedIn. But, admittedly, we are rookies. Would like to learn more and become more versed. #SMTLive— Travis Joyal (@TJMO) July 30, 2019
I also subscribe to LinkedIn's Marketing blog that puts out weekly articles and updates - some have been very useful! https://t.co/w5OtRRoF6X— Robin Selvy Re (@RobinSelvy) July 30, 2019
LinkedIn marketing can seem intimidating, particularly as the platform becomes more popular. However, as @RobinSelvy notes, LinkedIn actually offers a lot of resources to help marketers on their platform.
Instagram has some niche, aesthetically-focused hacks for marketers. Here's what #SMTLive users find effective on the platform.
That's awesome! Out of curiosity, what kinds of content do you find are most effective to engage with your IG following? #SMTLive— MyCorporation (@MyCorporation) July 30, 2019
For our clients, we also find that faces results in some of the highest engagement. It turns out that people like to engage with people! #SMTLive— Travis Joyal (@TJMO) July 30, 2019
We actually build in quarterly (or monthly, if bigger budget) photo shoots with our clients so we are never using stock images. Stock images have their place, but social media is not one of those places - a place in which authentic content is so important! #SMTLive— Travis Joyal (@TJMO) July 30, 2019
Faces and behind the scenes content seem to work well for these small business on Instagram.
A2: For organic content, Instagram (especially Stories) has proven to be the most successful. Facebook is still the strongest platform for paid content. Twitter is strong for real-time, strategic engagement. #SMTLive— Travis Joyal (@TJMO) July 30, 2019
@TJMO offered the above explanation of what's been working for their small business on each platform.
Which social platform have you had the most difficulties growing a following and engagement on?
But these platforms aren't one size fits all - what works for larger corporations might not work for SMBs, and what works for SMBs might totally fail for others.
Check out what hasn't worked for these small businesses on social below.
Facebook's paid ads can be a tough spot for small businesses, according to @meganvgavin.
Facebook (with their constantly changing algorithm). I don't think we would be able to grow without paid on that platform. Twitter can be challenging too. It's a crowded space. #SMTLive— meg (@meganvgavin) July 30, 2019
Sweeney shared that MyCorp doesn't have accounts with short-form video sites like Snapchat or Tik Tok. Their specific offerings lend themselves better to platforms where they can share more written content about their services.
A3: We don’t have accounts with short-form video sites like Snapchat or Tik Tok. Our specific offerings (LLC formations) lend themselves a bit better on sites like Facebook or Twitter where we can share more written content. (Are we still cool tho? ????) #SMTLive— MyCorporation (@MyCorporation) July 30, 2019
Twitter strategy is also a whole different animal for small businesses.
Our experience is that Twitter is fantastic for engaging with small, intimate groups. Content is not our primary strategy on Twitter (although, we do build content for it). Listening and joining conversations is our primary strategy. #SMTLive— Travis Joyal (@TJMO) July 30, 2019
We certainly struggle finding the time, too. Someone on the team engages with users directly tagging clients and commenting on content. I set aside approx 30 mins each week to deep listen for keywords that are applicable to our clients and jump in to those conversation. #SMTLive— Travis Joyal (@TJMO) July 30, 2019
That's all for this #SMTLive recap. Be sure to check back for more info on what not to do, as well as past and future goal, for small business social media strategies during our next recap.
Special thanks, again, to Deborah Sweeney for helping out with this one.