Unleash Greatness

Getting Social: Get Started

By Rob Hawse

This post may seem a bit basic to some of you, but we often see from clients that they either struggle to get started with social media, or are using it in the wrong ways. Business owners, especially small business owners, cite the same struggles: financial resources, a lack of exposure, and not enough time in the day to get everything done, nor an extra hand to do it. However, in this day and age, you simply cannot afford to be left out of the social landscape.

The advantages are many: it’s a brand-building and brand-awareness tool, and a sales tool – connecting you with potential clients, and reinforcing your relationship with existing clients.

And then there is band-wagon effect – you do not want to be left behind. Your competitors are doing it, and your customers are doing it. When your customers expect you to have a social presence and you don’t, it can be viewed negatively.

In a recent study, 92% of small businesses say that social media is an effective marketing technology tool.

E-Strategy Trends

They are evenly split on the effectiveness of social media for attracting new customers vs. engaging existing customers.

And for those of you that think social media is for the generation below you, it’s far past that. The fastest-growing segment of social media users is now adults aged 50+!

With social media you gain highly-targeted traffic and you get to know your target audience. However slowly or quickly you reap the benefits of a social media presence depends upon your content strategy, your messaging, the consistency of your presence and the audience you have positioned yourself in front of.

At Crafted, we recommend that you post at least 2000 words per month of new content on your site, and you can use social media to drive visitors to those pages and vice versa. A primary way to add content is through a blogging strategy. In the first study mentioned above, 95% of small businesses view blogging as an effective marketing technology tool, second only to email marketing. Think about meaningful pieces of information you can share with your network and draft a basic editorial calendar to assign broadcast dates. And, don’t be afraid to reach out for help with your writing if you simply don’t have the time internally – in many cases, that’s the easiest way to get going. However, make sure that you weigh cost and reliability in choosing a partner that will give you a valuable long-term relationship.

In addition to this, we recommend you be present and active on the social sites that are the right fit for your business. There are hundreds of sites to choose from between networking sites, media-sharing sites, social news and bookmarking sites, and micro-blogging sites. You may be a little overwhelmed by which social networks are best to promote your company. Although many of our clients use the most common social networks such as Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin, YouTube, Google+, and Pinterest, there may be a different combination that is right for you.

The main thing to keep in mind as a business, is that you’re posting meaningful content that fits into your content strategy. Social media planning, content strategy, and content creation support are an important part of your overall marketing strategy and something Crafted provides for companies in our Strategic Marketing roadmap. Whether you develop your strategy with us, or with someone else, just make sure that it is relevant and meaningful. That is when it will be most effective for you.

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