Social media can be intimidating. The #1 request I get for services needed is social media help. The odd part is, I don’t advertise social media management as a service I offer. However, it’s what small business owners, solo entrepreneurs, and those starting out with a blog, book, or crafty Facebook group WANT THE MOST.
Why? Because social media management has turned into a monster under our bed.
The very thought of something lurking in our closet or below the bed frame paralyzed us as kids. We pulled the sheets over our heads, didn’t dare move a muscle or breathe too loud until we finally fell asleep. In the morning, we woke to realize there were no monsters – and off we went to play our day away.
Somehow we’ve allowed people to convince us that algorithms and the complexity of social media is a giant monster and we need monster slayers to even get out of bed…or, as one client said, “get out of the basement”.
I admit I fall victim to that mentality far too often.
The truth is, we are making social media harder than it should be.
Yes, ➡️there are strategies and tips we need to understand to maximize our use of social media.
But can we pull back for a minute and realize that we’ve forgotten the real purpose of social media?
CONNECTING WITH PEOPLE
Real, living, breathing, emotionally-fragile, sometimes having a bad day, other times living on the top of the world people? People who get jobs, lose jobs, have fights with their loved ones, take trips of a lifetime, feel lonely and rejected, are worried about something, or wonder where they fit in this world.
Your job on social media isn’t to promote the (bleep) out of your business, it’s to think about how your product or service can make people’s day better; where they are, right now.
As I mentioned, I forget this. I let my own worries about how to grow my business to overshadow the simplicity of connecting with people.
Here are a few things I want to remind all of us:
RELAX, BE YOURSELF
No one else can do social media for your business quite like you. It’s because your business is more than a product or service, it has your personality and character woven into it. That is what makes you stand out – it’s where you’ll find your Unique Selling Proposition (USP). That’s not to say you shouldn’t hire help, but remember that audiences can sense (subconsciously) where there is a disconnect. When and if you hire someone, make sure they have a solid understanding of marketing. If their first question isn’t “Tell me about your target audience“, then I guarantee you, they won’t do the job you need them to do.
When you saw the first point, “Be Yourself”, did you roll your eyes or mutter something about you don’t even know what that means?
That’s OKAY…but…don’t even start developing a social media plan or strategy yet. You need to have some Kum-ba-yah or Come To Jesus moments as you clarify who you are and then your business identity.
UNDERSTAND YOUR AUDIENCE WELL
Social media is a relationship and you need to get to know your target audience. For some of us, we have to discover who they really are, but don’t put off narrowing down an Ideal Representative Customer. Once you’ve defined your IRC, then start to get to know them. Where they hang out online, how they talk, what they like, their needs, wants, and desires.
HOW DOES YOUR KNOWLEDGE/EXPERTISE/PRODUCT MAKE THEIR DAY BETTER?
All social media platforms are a business. They are in the business of connecting people together. They like their business and each platform has the same goal: make people happy so they stay on the platform.
When you learn how to give your target audience a good experience on social media, the platform will reward you with more views (i.e. exposure).
Let’s say you sell homemade cookies and your target audience are young mothers in their 20s and are on a tight budget. Think about what their life is like. What stresses them out, what will bring a smile to their face.
EXAMPLE: Instead of creating a post that says, “Today’s cookie is______”. Try saying something like,
- “These warm, homemade, dark chocolate, coconut, caramel cookies makes momma happy every time.”
- “Remember, when you take your kids out for cookies, they have to pay ‘Mom Tax’ (i.e. as many bites as mom wants).”
- Or…”Mom Tax. No exclusions apply. Keeps Momma happy.” ?
Part of being yourself and giving your target audience a good experience on social media is HAVING FUN! Don’t take yourself so seriously. Consider how to take a difficult topic and turn it into a positive one. Put yourself in your audience’s shoes and think about how to bring a smile to their face.
This works even if you sell foot cream or hair gel. For example, people use foot cream to make their feet look good and smell better. Why? If they’re a woman, they probably want to wear cute sandals in the summer. If that’s your target audience, post pictures of popular beaches around the world, the latest sandal styles, and even ask what their favorite nail polish color is.
Once you relax and think about how your product or service benefits the lives of your audience, the ideas will start to roll. You become yourself and next thing you know, you have an engaged audience and you don’t even have to worry about the algorithm!
Do you need help identifying your target audience and generating ideas to connect with them? Schedule a one-on-one consultation and I'll work with you to pull you "out of the basement" in your social media strategy.