How to use Social Media for your Business (or Ministry)

Did you know that 52% of people in the Global South are on social media and 42% have a smartphone (i.e., a phone that can access the internet and use apps)? Social media is one of the easiest ways to connect to people, share information, create awareness of your business, and increase sales. With a little bit of planning and a few simple clicks, businesses can use Facebook and Instagram to direct people to your business, post photos and videos, announce specials, chat with potential customers, and even reach people who are outside your network.

Here are five easy steps to create your social media strategy:-

(1)  Identify your market. Ask yourself, who is your customer? Male? Female? Young? Old? Married? With children? What do they like, and where do they spend their money and their time?

(2)  Identify your Goals. Do you want your current network to know you started a business? Or do you want to find new customers? Or advertise a new product or service? What impact do you want your social media to have? Use the common goal-setting acronym SMART to help you create these goals: Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant and Timely.

Example: I will spend one hour each week on my social media platform to make sure customers know where I am located and my hours of operation, post a new photo of how clean my shop is, and post photos of each of my satisfied customers.

(3)  Choose your Platforms. Based on your target audience and goals, which platforms are you going to invest time, energy, and money in? Which are the most popular with your customers?

(4)  Content: What makes your business special? What content can you use to communicate this?

Examples: I have the best selection of books and I will post photos of the newest titles each week.

I am a cosmetics expert, and I will post one tip, product review of the best products, and video of me applying make-up on a friend or customer each week.

(5)  Engaging Actively on Social Media. Social media is driven by content (photos, videos, and text) and frequency. Using hashtags, responding to comments, and liking and commenting on posts means you will show up in more search results. Responding to customer questions quickly is a great way to engage with your audience and build your online presence. Make decisions on how you want to create targeted ads using your social media content.

Examples: I will spend Monday morning planning my social media strategy and Tuesday morning creating a new page for my business.

I want to find five new hair plaiting customers this month by asking my current customers to “like” my page and post about their experience.

Resources:

The following links will direct you to some free online resources for developing your social media strategy:

This document can be filled to help identify your audience. Use the prompting questions to think about who your target audience is in detail.   https://docs.google.com/document/d/1fcnBO94K_XaDf1C-H9o3mLh5zv7DQdP8J_OagWxsftU/edit?usp=sharing

Creating a Social Media Strategy. This editable document can be used to help you develop a social media strategy. Think through the various parts and fill them out for your own business. https://docs.google.com/presentation/d/1lfs8QOSS_nB3SyNW_FrOtcSRZ8iZyOrUozzAwk4aFQQ/edit?usp=sharing

Hootsuite offers these 7 FREE and downloadable templates to manage your social media. As a whole, they offer great training on social media practices as well as have an informative blog. You can also use their app to schedule and load content you plan to share on your platforms:   https://blog.hootsuite.com/social-media-templates/

This is an excellent blog that spells out the basics of Facebook Advertising. It walks you through the steps in great detail: https://www.oberlo.com/blog/the-beginners-guide-to-facebook-advertising

Credit to Jessie Webb for these tips. OM-ers can contact her at Jessie.Webb@glossmail.org with their questions.

 

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