How Can My Business Use Social Media Effectively?

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Social media is an interesting thing. I get the distinct impression that we all feel like it’s something that we need to be doing to draw in clients and engage with them in their space, but we’re not to sure how to do that. The concept of social media marketing is relatively new, and the rules keep changing, so it’s not like there are peer-reviewed textbooks on it just yet.

This doesn’t change the fact that you’re looking to educate and engage with your clients. It just means you’re still looking for how that can be done well.

Look no further - here are some basic guidelines that will help you build your social media presence up from a couple of skeleton pages into a thriving community

Social Media Marketing: The ‘Silver Bullet’

Social media marketing was for a long time heralded as a ‘silver bullet’ - a magic solution, able to solve any and all marketing issues for your business forever. ‘Social media gurus’ spruiked their skills with this pitch, and we went along, because what other media source was closer to the client than social? Customers and clients could interact with brands with the same amount of ease and informality as with their peers and friends. Using platforms like Twitter and Facebook allowed businesses to become involved with clients on a mundane, everyday level.

Things have changed somewhat in the last few years, however - Facebook (and recently Instagram) have updated their algorithms to favour paid advertising over organic posts. This has greatly changed the amount of reach one business can have with its posts unless there’s invested capital behind them.

Still, social media proves to be an excellent method of outreach, education, and interaction, and it’s an effective way to interact with customers and clients.

So where do we start when it comes to effectively using this outreach method?

The Need To Understand The Client

Your business’ success starts and ends with your ability to understand your clientele. If you understand their priorities, their preferences, and their habits, you’ll be able to create material for them and speak to them in a way that will genuinely connect.

Why is this so important? Well, if you’re only putting energy into attracting one type of client - your favourite type of client - then that’s the only type of client you’re going to attract. It means that the clients you work with are the ones that benefit most from your practice. There’s no point spending time, energy, and resources trying to attract poor-fit clients. So don’t.

Work out what type of client your business would like to attract. Ask yourself where they go to find out new things, and how they like to digest information. Also have a good think about the concerns and the priorities of your ideal client, and think about how those concerns and priorities meet the services you offer.

Next, Play To Your Strengths

By now, you’ve probably got a good idea of how your client prefers to consume information and where they’d hang out. So ask yourself, what kinds of content do you enjoy creating? You’re going to be using that content to draw in your clients, so what kind of content do you enjoy making that you know your clients love to interact with?

You might be great at text-based articles, for example. If you can create insightful and provoking blog posts with minimal effort, and you know that your ideal clients use Facebook, it’d make the most sense to apply your marketing effort there than, say, Pinterest. In contrast, if your profession and your skillset naturally lend themselves to the top-down product arrangement, and if you can pick the perfect filter for any light, why not set yourself up on Instagram?

I know that it can feel like we’ve got to have a finger in every pie - just in case a client might look us up on that platform. In the end though, it’s better if we work with what we’re good at, in areas that naturally showcase that to our prospective clients, rather than stretching ourselves thin over five poorly-maintained accounts.

There’s only so much time you can spend working on your social media marketing, so make it count. Pick just one or two platforms - the ones your clients are most likely to use, and create content that naturally fits with them.

The Bigger Picture

Is order to do effective social media marketing, you’ll want to first map out a picture of your ideal clients. Work out what kinds of questions they ask, what their concerns are, where they spend their time, and the kind of information they enjoy consuming most. Then, create content on those platforms that answer those questions and address the concerns. Make content that fits with your skillset so you can play to your strengths, and narrow the number of social media platforms down to something that is manageable and will give you results.

Keep using your social media platforms to invite potential clients back to your website. Use your social media posts to create spaces for discussion and engage with prospective clients to build trust and confidence. If your readers sign up for updates on your content blog, it’ll create more opportunities for you to educate them further, address more questions and concerns, and build trust. When your readers feel they understand how your natural therapy can solve their problems, and they trust in your ability to do so, they’ll become clients.

We’re currently publishing a short series on how to build a solid understanding of your ideal client. If that sounds like something you’d like to tune in on, why not subscribe to our newsletter? We’ll have updates of the series as they come.