The Ultimate Guide on Growing Your Social Media Following, Part I

If you don’t already know how important social media is to growing a successful business, you might be living under a rock. Or under layers and layers of rock. Social Media is the driving force in establishing who or what a company is in 2016. And that’s why I’ve developed the perfect 2-part cheat sheet for you to use in growing your social media following!

In Part I, I will outline the important and necessary steps needed BEFORE introducing your business to the social media world! 

1. Use The Right Platforms

It’s important to find out which social media platforms will work best for growing your business and followers. You’ll need to do a little research for what you’ll be investing your time in, so ask yourself the following questions before jumping into any particular network:

  • Is my area of industry using this platform?
  • Are my potential followers present and engaged here?
  • Does this network make sense for the content I’ll be sharing?
  • Will it fit well for my business?

 

2. Research and Use Hashtags

The hashtag is a small but mighty tool for growing a following. When you hashtag a word on a social media platform like Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter, your post can be seen by thousands of users around the world - even by those who don’t follow you! Using hashtags can create a massive reach for your business, so it’s extremely vital to learn which ones will go the furthest distance for you.

Hashtagify is a good resource that can help you figure out which keywords to hashtag within a post. It’ll break down activities and topics to use, opening more doors for growing your following. Words that include related subjects, local events and places, or similar brands will grow your company’s exposure to a more global audience.

3. Research Your Target Audience

Who does your company exist for? What kind of followers are going to be interested in your business? Find who your target audience is and then find out where they usually hang on social media. The Pew Research Center did a helpful study on exactly who uses each social media platform, making it easy to see where your potential followers could be engaging. Make sure you also take some time in researching where your competition’s content is being posted and how it affects their following.

 

4. Optimize Your Profiles

Improving your social media profile is a super easy way to up the value of your business in the online world. Think of your profile as a potential follower’s first impression of your company. You want your growing audience to know exactly what your business is about and be immediately attracted to what you do. To optimize this, make sure your profile is in good shape:

  • Choose an easily identifiable username and profile photo.
  • Write a clear and compact (no rambling!) description of your business, explaining who you are and what you do.
  • Place an easy-to-see and trackable link back to your main website (Hint: Google Analytics).

As you work on updating your profile, remember to maintain similar style and branding throughout your social media platforms. As your business grows, you want your followers to be able to see consistency in your online presence.

 

5. Hire A Social Media Manager

If you are already feeling overwhelmed with steps 1-3 it is time to consider outsourcing! With the amount of work and energy it takes to create a successful presence on social media, hiring the right social media manager is a savvy move for a busy business or start-up. SMM’s know exactly how to build a social media following, grow engagement across different social media platforms, and consistently drive follower traffic back to your website.

Learn more about my SMM services here and stay tuned for Part II on the 3rd Thursday of September.

Lindsay Madonia