Hey, CEO! (Who are we kidding – you’re probably also the head of marketing, sales, customer service, and every other branch of your business.) Such is small business life, am I right? I get it. I’m a one woman show around here too, unless you count HoneyBook as an employee. Long story short, I know how it feels to struggle to keep up with it all and it’s my mission to help you get your life back… by making parts of your business more efficient, one step at a time. First up? Learning that effective social media marketing for small business owners doesn’t have to be a life-consuming task.
After reading this post, you’ll be able breathe easier, knowing that the content you’re planning is intentional, strategic, and will actually yield your business some results! I promise, it’s not tough. Over 60% of new clients in my business come from Instagram. If I can do it, so can you! Put on your shoes and let me walk you though it…
Look at Upcoming Sales & Promotions
I’m not a betting woman, but if I were, I would bet that you are currently posting whatever is on your heart or mind, without much thought to how it relates to your revenue. If I struck a nerve, know that it’s only because I’ve been where you are. I used to post some derivative of what others were posting and unsurprisingly, my results (or lack thereof) showed.
To write social content (or any content, for that matter) that actually moves the needle, you have to first consider why you’re writing it. What is the goal of this post? To build trust? To get someone on your email list? Or maybe to get your audience ready to buy from you?
We can find clarity in our goals by mapping out major sales or promotions in our calendar. If you are a service-provider, look back at past years and determine when you booked most of your clients in a given year. For example, a wedding photographer might find they book most of their couples in May. Write down those chunks of time in a calendar the same way you would if you were promoting a new product.
Doing this will help you be more aware of when you should shift your content from nurturing / relationship-based to information / sales-based. (Balancing the line between the best friend no one buys from and annoying girl who always sells is hard. This will help.)
Once you can visually see on your calendar which dates are most important from a sales perspective and are clear about what you’re selling, you can move on to the next step… Ask yourself a few questions (as they pertain to that specific product / service / promotion):
- What does my audience need to know or do in order to feel comfortable working with (or purchasing from) me?
- Do they need to become aware of their problem before they can entertain my solution?
- Are there specific questions or objections I’ve been asked repeatedly in the past by prospective clients?
- Do they feel like they know me well enough to trust me?
Make a list of everything you think of as you go through each question. These ideas will be the foundation of your social strategy in the weeks or months leading up to each promotion. (Generally, the larger the purchase price, or newer the offer, the more time you want to spend building excitement and understanding before a launch.)
Consider Multiple Personalities
Girl, look at you speeding on through this. Not so bad yet, is it? The funny part is that the hardest part is behind us. Now, you get to be yourself. The next question you want to ask is, “how can I share these topics (or answer these questions) in a variety of ways to get through to different personalities?”
Like I talk about in IG Caption Infusion, there are a few types of posts you can use to communicate ideas. Each plays an important role in social media marketing for small business owners. Those three types are: entertain / engage, encourage, and educate. Some people, like myself, need all the details before they feel comfortable working with a business (educate). Others need to feel like they connect with the business (cue engaging). And I think we can agree that everyone likes to laugh and feel encouraged.
Your job is to take the topics and fit them into one of those types, rotating between the three at a frequency that feels authentic to you and your brand. For example, one business might have posts that look like: engage, entertain, educate, educate, engage, educate. Another business with a more light-hearted approach might look like: educate, entertain, engage, entertain, engage, entertain. There is no right or wrong combination – only the one that works for you.
To ensure you’re keeping the types of content balanced, consider creating a visual skeleton of what posts / topics will fit where leading up to your sales push.
Write & Schedule Posts
Grab your coffee, your best playlist, and stretch your hands because it’s time to get to writing! In the past, it would have been intimidating to plan out 2-4 weeks of social posts. What will you even say? But not the new you. New you is ready to roll, but pump the brakes for two seconds while I help you do this efficiently. We know you’re busy wearing those 27 hats, after all!
If you don’t have a system or set of marketing tools you love using yet, check out the post where I share my favorites. We’re going to use those planning tools to write your posts out completely, match them with a photo or graphic to grab attention, and plan our hashtags to make sure they get seen. But before you officially schedule them, reference this quick checklist:
- Do you know what you’re trying to accomplish with this post?
- Will it serve your ideal client?
- Is there a clear call to action that lines up with one of your business goals? (Ex. “Join my email list” or “snag your spot.”)
If so, you’re good to go. Now you have content planned weeks ahead of time so that when it comes time to post, your auto-populated reminder pops up on your phone. Instead of scrambling for 30 minutes each day about what to post, you just hit publish on intentional posts (that are already drafted) in less than 5 minutes. Not only did we just save you time, but we also cleared some mental space for you. *Throws confetti and pops champagne.* Cheers! *Clink*
Now that you know exactly how to approach your social media marketing strategy moving forward, there are two other steps you can take to help you be more effective and efficient. Step one, download my guide for how to make your IG bio an ideal client magnet. Step two, check out my post on batch working to see how you can save even more time on your tasks so you can start working on your business rather than in it.