You've probably heard by now that your small business should be using social media to promote your products or services. Ok, but which ones and how do they work? Below is a brief summary of the top five social media tools that will help create a human connection with your visitors, leads and customers.
Facebook is a great place to create a human connection with your visitors, leads and current customers. You want to show the world your companies personality, so it's ok to not only post news about your business, but also post photos of something silly. Maybe a "Happy Hump Day" photo or a photo of your team at the recent holiday party. Showing your visitors that you are relatable will effect them emotionally and studies show that more purchase decisions come down to an emotional reason (not price). Keep in mind that Facebook ranks your post if you use visual content, so use an image with your post as often as possible. Also, on Facebook your followers must "like" your page first before they start to receive your updates in their newsfeed.
Short and sweet is how you should think about twitter. Twitter is the buzz feeder. By using hashtags and mentioning other tweeters you are able to reach a much larger audience. Unlike Facebook, people don't have to be following you to see your content. A good rule of thumb when using twitter, keep it simple, concise and always include a link to help track the engagement of your followers.
LinkedIn is where it's all business. This is the most formal out of all the other social media tools. Create a company page and when posting in LinkedIn you want to provide the top industry focused information. Show your followers that are an expert in your field of business, by providing them with content that will help them improve their business.
HubSpot is brilliant at posting industry leading information for Inbound Marketing on LinkedIn.
Google+ is your search optimizer assistant. It's not as popular as Facebook and Twitter, but at around 100 million users you should start using it. By creating a business page you will help improve your local search optimization. Also, the use of +1 buttons on your website can improve your click through rates.
One of our customers, State Line Oil has begun using Google+ as another outlet to promote their blog and upcoming specials to help increase local search optimization.
Pinterest is all about visual content and it may not be the best fit for all industries. Like the other social tools, in Pinterest you are encouraged to connect with your other social media accounts. So not only may your product be pinned on pinterest, but at the same time it can be shared on Facebook increasing your reach significantly. Pinterest's popularity has been rapidly increasing. A recent article from AdAge stated that The Real Simple magazine website received more traffic from Pinterest then Facebook (see article).
Another customer, Buttons Up Boston using Pinterest by promoting one of their latest hair accessories