Updated: Jan 16
Let's talk about getting started on social media as a small business owner. You'll need a Facebook page for your business as well as an Instagram with a business profile. Not sure how to create a Facebook business page? Click here for Facebook's step by step tutorial. Already have your Facebook page, but you're not sure how to grow it? Keep reading.
How do I make my Facebook page more easy to find?
Link your business page to your bio on your personal Facebook profile. You can do this by signing into your personal Facebook account and under the "Where do you work?" section - link your business Facebook page so that people can easily find it! Once you've linked it, it should say, "Works at (YOUR BIZ PAGE NAME)"
How can I boost engagement on my Facebook page?
By inviting all your friends to like the page! You can do this by pulling up your Facebook business page from a computer, scroll down a bit and on the right you'll see where it says "Community". Click the blue button that says "Invite Friends" then click "Select All" this "Select All" option is only accessible on the computer. *Before you do this make sure you've updated your profile picture, cover photo, and filled out the about information on your Facebook business page. Don't forget to include your website so your audience recognizes it's YOUR business profile.
How do I build credibility on my Facebook page?
By collecting reviews from happy clients and/or customers! When you have a great interaction with a client and/or customer make sure to send them the link to your Facebook page and ask them for a review! Generally once I finish up a project with a client I ask if they'd be open to leaving a review on my Facebook page. Using the language "would you be open" is simple and professional. The worst they can say is no, right?!
What's the difference between Facebook & Instagram?
Facebook business pages are pay to play. I've seen an account with 12k+ likes get only 150-200 views when they post. If you pay to boost the post it will get more traction, but for consistent marketing focus on your Instagram content and just copy those posts over to your Facebook business page. (You can link them so you're not having to post different content to both.)
*BONUS: I do have a client who is doubling her growth through Facebook because her target market is on Facebook more than she's on Instagram. So for her I'm advising her to focus her strategy and brainstorming on Facebook because that's where her market is. Keep in mind you want to go where your audience is hanging out. There's no shame in doubling those posts over to Instagram or another profile. I wouldn't be posting the exact same posts on every single platform, but Facebook and Instagram can have the same content until you're ready to strategize different for both. (I still don't do this, so no shame here! haha)
Photo Source: Unsplash
How should I set up my bio and how do I use highlights?
Your bio and highlights will be the first thing new people will view when they find you on Instagram. Remember K.I.S.S. - Keep It Simple Stupid. The simpler the better. The easier it is to find you, learn about what you do, and why you do it the more likely it is that they are going to do business with you. Use your highlights as a way to showcase what you want them to see first! This is your time to shine so show off some of your favorite projects you've worked on! *Note anything in your highlights has to be posted to your Instagram story first - we'll talk about this more below.
Whenever people ask me how I grow my business I always tell them, Jesus and Instagram and in that order! :) My business has also grown through referrals as well, but Instagram is something I'd like to chat about in a bit more depth. So here are my 4 Secrets to Growing Your Business on Instagram.
How do I find relevant hashtags?
#1 Grow Your Network by Using Relevant Hashtags
Let's use location as an example. I'm in a city called Spring Hill, TN so I'll search #springhilltn on Instagram under the "tags" tab. Once I do this a list of hashtags will show up below the original one that I searched.
Which of these do you pick?
You can use up to 30 in the description and comments combined. This means if you have 2 in your caption you can only put 28 in the comments. Here's how I choose the hashtags I use:
-5 Brand Specific Hashtags
-5 Based Location/Brand
-5 Relate to the Photo
-5 Popular (500k+)
-5 Niche (less than 500k)
-5 - whatever else you want!
Brand specific means you're using your brands name as a hashtag as well as your name. This makes it easier for people looking for you or your brand to find you. The location/brand hashtags are going to be on your specific location like your cities name so you can network with locals. You can also use other cities hashtags that you may want to network with! Don't forget to tag brands that may show up in your photo whether it's the products your using or the clothing brands you're wearing. You never know when a brand may repost your photo just because their product is in it! A general rule of thumb to remember is to use a few hashtags that have 1M or more views and no more. These are used so often that it's hard to get spotted using them, so you don't want to only pick the more largely viewed hashtags.
Photo Credit: Unsplash
Should I be posting pictures of myself?
#2 Use High Quality Photos of YOU and Your Product/Service
Yes, I know you're probably thinking... "Photos of me?! I don't want to post pictures of me." Let me ask you this, how much more likely are you going to trust a brand or person if you can match a face with their name? YOU are the face of your brand. They want to see you, because they want to trust you. I'll be 100% honest, I hate posting pictures of myself - I know it's awkward and feels weird sometimes, but it's absolutely worth getting out of my comfort zone to grow my business so I just go for it!
How do I grow my following on Instagram organically?
#3 Grow Your Following and Network with Engagement
When it comes to growing your following engagement is key. People want to hear from you, but they also want to know you're listening to them. What I like to do is find 5-10 people a day that I'm not yet following, I like or "heart" 3 of their photos, and post a genuinely nice or encouraging comment on one of their photos. Those that come back to my profile and interact on my posts or follow me, I follow back. Some people don't reciprocate the engagement because they may not be trying to network or make new friends, but those that do are clearly open to making new connections. Within the first week of doing this I had 40+ new followers IN 7 DAYS.
So how do I find people to interact with on Instagram?
There are two ways I go about this. Either through hashtags or current friends. First I'll explain how to go about it through hashtags. First, think about the type of person you want to connect with. Whether you think they would read your blog or would become a customer of yours. What type of person are they? What hashtags would they use? I personal follow a hashtag called #watercolorart because I love connect with artists. When I see a post in my feed come up because someone used that hashtag I check out the comments. I look for people that commented something encouraging and I go to their profile to see what they've posted. If they seem like someone I would like to connect with I like 3 of their photos and leave a nice comment on one of them. Sometimes they'll come back to my profile and do the same, sometimes they won't, but this is how it starts!
The other way to do this is by going to a friends profile and seeing whose been commenting nice things on their posts. It's natural to make new friends through your friends, so why not show your friends friends some love! For example I have a friend named Mary Beth. She is a realtor, she motivated, she loves life, and she's just a wonderful person. We both are growing businesses on Instagram so I've interacted with some of her friends before. This is a great way to network without leaving the house! I tend to have a little social anxiety with new people so I tend to make friends online first, then when we meet up in person or hop on the phone it already feels like we're friends!
#4 What are Instagram Highlights and How Do I use them?
Highlights are the little "circle buttons" in your bio that help you tell your story and share your services. If you don't have highlights yet you'll just see a circle with a plus in it and possibly some suggested highlights to create. If you click that plus with the circle around it you can go through your past Instagram stories and check each one you'd want to go into your first highlight. I use to have highlights with my family and random funny videos, but then I realized that highlights are the first thing that people will see when they find me on Instagram. After realizing this, I started creating and keeping highlights that reflected the main things I wanted people to know who were seeing my profile for the first time.
Bonus Tip: This is the last thing I'm going to share, but honestly it's the most important. STAY CONSISTENT. Consistency is key to growing your business on Social Media. If you haven't posted in a while people will wonder if you're still open for business. If you have additional questions, I'd love to help! Feel free to shoot me an email to schedule a content planning strategy session!