As a small business owner, you’ve heard all the social media jargon. It swirls around like a hurricane: “You must use Instagram! Google+ is the next biggest thing in social media! If you’re not on Pintrest you’re sunk!”….
It’s enough to make you want to dive for your umbrella and board up the windows.
What to do? You’re probably thinking what I’m thinking: “I could spend 50 hours a week maximizing social media!”
(Hmmmm… let me think… that leaves me with 3 hours to actually serve my clients and do what I do best…
if I skip lunch and my kids’ tee-ball games…)
Thankfully, there is a “right answer” to the social media storm: Don’t do everything.
Notice that we didn’t say “don’t do anything,” which is one natural reaction. Start with a few questions before you act. Like this one:
What’s my purpose?
Let me guess: you’re not using social media just to win the “cutest Facebook picture of the day” award. Your time is valuable. You’re using social media to help you reach your other business goals.
Take a minute to decide your purpose: Are you trying to…
- Build awareness of your brand
- Get customers to walk in the door with special offers and limited-time specials
- Help clients share your information with their friends
- Build good will — “Warm fuzzy feelings”— with your clients
- Get more hits on your website
Write down your goals. End up with a “Social Media Big Picture Statement,” something like this:
“Social media must help my business get _______________ , establish ______________, and build ________________.”
After you have your purpose, determine that everything you do on social media will help you meet these goals. Don’t use any social media tools that aren’t helping you.
What does having a purpose “look like” in real life? For instance…
- If your business manufactures computer chips for the medical industry, you don’t need to use Instagram.
- Your game/comic book store doesn’t need to fanatically post to LinkedIn.
- Your café should be posting (beautiful) photos every day on Facebook and Twitter, but not on Google+ if you only have 11 followers
Get the (big) picture? If you don’t know what you want social media to do for you, you won’t know what to do for it.
Start with your purpose.