• Kelly Smith

Eliminate the Overwhelm of Social Media Marketing

The purpose of social media marketing is to deliver relevant, educational, and inspirational content to your desired audience on a consistent schedule. Not to make a quick sale. Let’s eliminate the confusion of social media marketing and clear up some misconceptions so you can #postwithpurpose

What it is

Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIN, TikTok, and Pinterest* are the major players in the social media universe. Pinterest is a search engine and it would benefit you to think of it that way. Pinterest is a really powerful tool that 335 Million people use each month to make life decisions on a regular basis. But that’s a different post for a different day. When used with intention, social media can be a place where your Ideal Clients become aware of you and enjoy hearing from you. It's free advertising if you want to think about it that way.

The most important thing to remember about social media is that it is one component of your digital marketing strategy.

By itself, it's not a robust tool. Social media is one pillar of your content marketing house, and if it's the only pillar, it doesn't support your goals.

Below, you'll see that your digital marketing strategy, which is based on your revenue streams, and your website are the foundation of your digital identity. The content pillars are the modalities in which you share value to your Ideal Clients. Social media marketing is one component of a strong content marketing strategy; not the end all, be all. Your pillars support your goal of nurturing an engaged audience & generating qualified leads for your business.

(This is an example of a client's content marketing house and is meant to be a guide)

What it isn't

Social media is not your online store. It isn't the place where you sell your goods & services. Can you throw an offer in there every now and then? Sure, but don't bombard people with sales tactics. You'll lose your following and it's just tacky.

*exceptions to this rule: if you sell a physical product, you can link your shop in a way that allows people to buy directly from Instagram or Facebook. However, 90% of your posts should not be a CTA to buy.

Now that we have that straight, let's dig into the biggest misconceptions that entrepreneurs face with social media marketing. After interviewing many business owners in a wide variety of industries, here are the most common misconceptions, along with action items to move forward.

Misconception #1: I Need To Be On All The Platforms

Nope. No, you don’t. Choosing the platform that resonates with your ideal client and one that you can consistently post on are the deciding factors. If you know who your Ideal Client is, you know where they’re hanging out online. If this is a struggle for you, read this first. Research your Ideal Client’s habits and interests, and you’ll quickly figure out what social media platforms they’re using.

Action Item: Explore one or two platforms that interest you, then see if it matches up with where your Ideal Client spends time. If it seems to be a good fit, learn the mechanics of how the platform works This is the fundamental step to making social media less intimidating. If you know how it works, you can master it.

Misconception #2: I don’t know what to post

Well this is easy, here.

I made a free cheat sheet, 30 Days of Social Media Posts for Business Owners because I know how hard it is to drum up content when you’re not feeling creative. I created it for myself and modified it to fit your business.

Here’s the secret sauce for social media: Post With Purpose.

When putting something out on social media ask these questions: 1. Is it true

2. Does this solve a real problem for someone, or is this wrapped up to look helpful, but doesn’t really add value

3. Does this authentically represent me and my brand

Let me fill you in on a secret: You don’t need to recreate the new social media content for every single post. If marketing your business well, you have other forms of content; perhaps a podcast, blog, weekly videos, a webinar… Pull snippets of this content and use it to “feed” your social media. Not only is this a huge timesaver, it’s how to do content marketing well. Drive traffic to your website/podcast/webinar where your ideal clients can get more in-depth education from you (for free)!

Misconception #3: Nobody likes my stuff: I post to social media and … crickets

The fancy term for likes, re-posts, comments, re-tweets, and shares, is “engagement.” It’s the most important social media metric to pay attention to and will help steer the ship of content you produce. If your audience isn’t feelin’ it, you need to pivot.

Here are some tips to get better engagement:

1. Hashtags: Does your Ideal Client know you’re out there posting? They will if you’re using the hashtags that they pay attention to. Close your eyes and think about your Ideal Client. When they pick up their phone to scroll, 1) where do they go, and 2) what do they look for? How does this relate to what you offer? One hour of market-research about hashtags to use to appeal to your Ideal Client is an hour well spent.

You can post until the cows come home, but if the right people can’t see it, it’s not going to deliver what your hoping it will.

2. Post better material: Have you ever read a post and thought, “Dang, how does she know me so well?” Well, it’s because the person who wrote that was writing to you.

Give away the farm. Give away your very best content for free and you will absolutely make more money in your business than you ever have. Be generous, be authentic, and be honest. Your engagement will skyrocket.

Misconception #4: I don’t have enough followers to make money from social media

Reframe: We don’t make money from social media. We offer free value on social media to improve people’s lives. If they find it valuable enough, they’ll move “through the funnel” to get more of your wisdom and insights. Then, when the time is right, they might buy from you.

Your “WHY” needs to be bigger than your desire to make money. If money’s the driver, your audience can smell it.

Ok, about followers… A small but mighty following is nothing to be ashamed of. In fact, if your engagement (see above) is strong, don’t worry about the number of followers you have. If people enjoy what they’re reading and seeing from your feed, why are you worried about followers? Bring awareness to the fact that it may be a comparison trap. Don't get stuck there.

To grow your following, follow the advice I listed to improved engagement (misconception #3) and your number of followers will grow fast. (hashtags are important).

Also, if you want to throw some money at it, boost a post. Choose a post that did really well (meaning: that people got a ton of value from which led to high engagement) and boost it! Seriously, a $50 boosted post can jumpstart a stale social media account.

A word to the wise: Don’t. Buy. Followers. This is a cheap and dishonest trick and will get you nowhere. Your shooting for quality followers, people who need to hear what you have to say, not just a high number.

Key Takeaways:

  1. Social Media is one pillar of your content marketing house. It's the handshake for your ideal clients

  2. Post With Purpose and solve real probelms for people for free.

  3. Download 30 Days of Social Media Posts for Business Owners to get a fresh perspective on adding value on your social media platforms.

I hope you’ve found this helpful! If so, would you consider forwarding it or sharing it with someone who may need to know this info? As always, I’m here for you if you have questions and would be more than happy to talk through the frustrations your facing with your marketing efforts. You can schedule a free consultation with me here!

Thanks for your time and attention today!

~Kelly Smith

Owner, Willow & Oak Business Solutions