Social media is a vital tool for your small business, but there are so many areas to cover that it’s hard to know which tools are the most important and which tasks you need to complete first.
Sure, there are lots of Facebook Ads from marketing gurus telling you they can solve your problems with one free PDF from their website… but these tend to do more harm than good because they’re too generic.
A content strategy that actually works isn’t just something you can download online, it’s something that needs to suit you, your business and your lifestyle. It’s something that will adapt over time as your work evolves and social media platforms update.
But, what I have found during my 6 years as a social media manager for a huge range of small businesses, is that there are some actions that every business owner can take to optimise your pages and make the most of the content you create.
Here are the 4 most important things you need to focus on first to take your social media strategy from ‘posting aimlessly and getting no response’ to ‘being clear in your messaging and growing an audience that are crazy about your business and dying to work with you’.
There’s one question that never fails to encourage my clients to be more open with me, especially during 1-2-1 Power Hours, and I’d love you to answer this today too:
What is it that holds you back from posting on social media?
The answers to this are varied, for sure, but there is one overarching theme that impacts every single woman I work with (and it is an important one to address before we dig into the finer details of transforming your pages):
She worries whether what she is posting is ‘right’ and what people will think of it.
She worries there are too many things to cover and doesn’t know where to start.
She worries no-one is going to comment on it, or there’ll be a nasty response.
She worries no-one will buy from her and it’ll all be a waste of her precious time.
She worries that talking about herself will come across as arrogant and put people off.
But here’s my advice to you: as long as you’re writing from a good, positive place (which you will be, because you’re lovely), nothing you post can be wrong.
Even if the reach and engagement is low, even if you get no response at all, you will learn from every single post you share and the more you publish. All these results can be put into your strategy for the future, and you’ll find your confidence will grow alongside your audience and reach.
And, once you have found a way to feel more confident, the remaining three areas will be much easier to achieve. You’ll be:
Posting more consistently because there’ll be one less thing holding you back.
Comfortable resting to conserve your energy because you won’t question yourself.
Making loads more connections because your new confidence will attract more people.
Make a note of the things that are holding you back and what you can do to help yourself overcome those.
If you’d like some help from me, The Content Planning Wizard, my best-selling Power Hours are designed to allow you to share the problems you’re experiencing, find a solution for those with me and create a strategy that’s going to make you feel much more confident about your content, your business and yourself.
As with business, consistency is key for success in social media. By this, I don’t just mean showing up every day at a certain time; I mean showing up with a consistent message to help your audience get to know, love and support you (and ultimately want to work with you).
So tell me honestly, do you post consistently?
It doesn’t have to be every single day, but are you posting at least 3 or 4 times a week, every week, with no gaps in content where you have lost momentum with your followers?
If your answer to this is ‘no’, don’t worry. You’re not alone, even I used to be really bad at this!
Despite creating consistent content for my clients’ social media pages, I was terrible at promoting my own business and sharing content daily to tell people what I do. The problem was, I didn’t prioritise doing planning and scheduling my content, believing other areas of my business were more important.
But the truth is, without posting every day I wasn’t building awareness of my business and I wasn’t connecting with potential future clients. So, if the work ran dry (which, let’s be honest, it often does when you're self-employed), I was back to square one: trying to engage with my audience from scratch.
When I launched my business, I knew I needed to show people what I could do, so I set about creating a plan for my own posts. It was during lockdown and I was really fed up of the scaremongering on Facebook, so instead I spent time on Instagram, making sure my grid and my content reflected my brand.
I aimed to post daily and made sure my photos followed my brand colours as much as possible. Later, I added graphics into my content (again, fitting those into a consistent brand) and eventually I used what I’d learned over there to create great content for a new Facebook Group (which now has almost 1k members!)
My follower numbers soon increased, but – most importantly – so did people’s impressions of me and I started to be able to gain clients, recommendations and more. While I’ve not always kept to posting every day, I do believe the consistency in messaging over time has been the key to my success.
You see, once you’re feeling confident in your social media strategy, using that to plan your content ahead of time ensures:
You show up online even when you’re busy with your work or your family.
Your messaging is consistent, so followers don’t get confused over what you are offering.
You can analyse your results effectively and use that to create future content.
You’ll be able to grow relationships with future clients and have them flocking to book your services.
Have a think about