Social Media Marketing for the Small Business (Part 1)

Editor’s Note: This is part 1 in our Social Media Marketing Series.

Social Media Marketing RocksSocial Media Marketing for the Small Business (Part 1)

So you have a business that sells something, widgets, gym memberships, washing machines from the Walla Walla Washing Machine Company, you have your thing you sell. And of course you want people to buy it. You have heard Facebook is this amazing place to post stuff and hope people see it and maybe just maybe if someone sees your post you will sell something. Or maybe you are supposed to be on Twitter, yeah, that must be where you are supposed to say amazing things in 140 characters or less and have people read your Tweets, visit your site, and buy something. Or is it LinkedIn, or Instagram, or maybe its Snapchat. Yeah, they sell stuff there, right?rnrnOkay, yeah, sort of, not really, but kind of. First, Facebook is a great place to post content but if you are a business, you will be hard pressed to get any traction with out paying some money (more on that in a future post). Basically Facebook has tweaked their “secret sauce” to make sure you aren’t getting something for nothing. Only if others share you stuff do you get any chance of traction. But how do you get people to share your stuff if they don’t even see it because Facebook buries it like the second page of a Google Search result.

The 80/20 Rule

So how does one get exposure for their business? It is tricky but doable. First remember the 80/20 rule. 80% of your postings on any social network should be information that benefits your target audience or at least entertains them and gives them something to like but even better share. 20% of your posts can actually be able your business and what you offer. Why? Well, like sales pitch, we get bored quick if you keep hitting us with ads but we are forgiving if you are busy posting useful or interesting things. So an ad every once in a while isn’t a problem. Great, so how do I get started?

 

Account Names Matter

First you need to decide on an account name. This is like naming your first born child. It has to be a name that won’t get them ridiculed in school and that you won’t go your whole life wishing you could change. In other words, once you set it you need to be able to stick with it. Twitter has a fourteen character limit on screen names. And you want to be able to use this same name on every social media you sign up for. This is the name that represents your brand. Say you are representing Joe’s Pool Hall. Well, it might make good sense to use @joespoolhall as your screen name on Twitter, Instagram, Google Plus, Snapchat, and Facebook. But notice it could be misread as joe spool hall. Does that matter? Maybe but probably not. But be aware of words inside of words when you put all your words together. You may want to do a little research before you fall in love with a username. For example, you would not believe how many sites there are that are variations on Faith and Technology. I didn’t know and if I had researched it I might have gone with a different domain name.

While a rose with any other name would smell just as sweet, this isn't true of websites.Click To Tweet

Check Out Part 2 of the Series.

January 1, 2015

To you and yours I wish you a very Happy New Year.

2015 New Year

I am in very deep thought as we start this new year. While I have made resolutions and promises to myself in the past with the passing and start of a new year in the past, this is the first time I feel like I am going into a year with high ambitions. I look at the clock on my computer and it is a new day, a new year, and a new start.

Jan1-2015-7am

I have two, maybe three books I want to finish and publish this year. Two are in progress and the third is rattling around in my head saying, put me to paper already. There are technical books and a biography I have to finish. And my brain is full of fiction stories that for some reason I don’t think I am capable of writing.

I want to push even harder on Social Media. I have enough information to be dangerous to really break out in Social Media.

I want to publish stories and articles on various websites. I have some leads on these already. Most of my work will be on technical articles about Tech topics I know and love.

I plan to do a weekly podcast and I hope to work up to a video podcast which I think based on the amount of work it will take will have to be every other week. Though I would love to do it weekly. If I can work out the Interview format, then I may be able to do it more often using Google Hangouts to get content to my YouTube Channel.

And I am working on various tutorials (mostly WordPress right now since I am revamping my WordPress book) about technical topics from blogging, to WordPress to video editing.

And then I was reading an Upper Room devotional this morning and I realized, where is God in this plan? I was touched by the scripture that was in the devotional.

 

Ephesians 1:3-4 (NIV)

Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in the heavenly realms with every spiritual blessing in Christ. For he chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight.

 

How can I accomplish any of this if God isn’t on board with it? How can I accomplish any of this if I am not thankful to God for all he has done for me and will do for me? I am so thankful God allowed me to wake up another day. He allows me to dream dreams. He has put me on the right path when I have veered so far away from it.

What are your goals for the new year? Did God make your goals or did he figure into your goals at all? As you can tell, I am guilty of not prayerfully considering my goals before I made them.

Lord, I thank you for another day. If my plans are not pleasing to you Lord, please steer me toward your plans and help me understand my plans may not be what is best for me. But your plans, Lord, are the best plans for me and my life. Allow me to be a blessing to others as I walk my daily journey.

Amen

Lamentations 3:22-23 (NIV)
22 Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed,
    for his compassions never fail.
23 They are new every morning;
    great is your faithfulness.