For those who think Google has it all their own way in determining the rise and fall of a website's popularity, be aware that Social Media is giving it a good run for its money. Small Businesses that focus on Google alone would be well advised to pay more attention to at least two forms of social media. Depending on your product or service and potential client base, you need to determine the best media for you - Twitter, Facebook, Linked In, Google+ even Tumblr, Instagram or Pinterest.
First of all, a warning about some of the statistics you are likely to see: they are often non-UK-specific. This matters a great deal if you are primarily a local business that rarely exports.
In the UK (as in the whole world) Facebook is the most widely used social media. Pfft! I hear you say - Facebook is just for chit-chat and sharing silly photos and videos. Consider, though, that we are not courting friends via our personal accounts, we are sharing insights and promoting products via our Facebook BUSINESS page. It's completely different! Good photos do work well though.
Facebook posts, when popular (i.e. liked and shared) often pop back into timelines a few times over the course of a couple of days. You can link a Facebook page to automatically link to a twitter page too, that's one less job to do.
Twitter is widely used by businesses and is more the equivalent of throw-away comments - send the same message several times, using different words if possible, several times a week. Add relevant hash-tags and occasional images. In between tweeting your own stuff, try to like and re-tweet other interesting content - this will usually encourage interaction from the account who posted the original (unless, of course, it's someone like 'the official account of the Duke of London' - is there one?).
A study of UK users of Facebook and Twitter revealed some interesting stats. Between 60%-70% claimed to follow accounts to keep up to date with the latest news from those accounts - and not to share nice pictures of their coffee and snacks!
One of our clients is getting far better results from advertising on Facebook for £10 per day than from advertising with Google Adwords for £30 per day. This may not last forever but it works for now.
Linked In is nowhere near as popular as FB or Twitter but it's definitely worth a try as you are likely to have a completely different set of followers.
The problem is that. unless you interact with your followers on any of these media, you will not know how to build on the benefits. Small business owners usually fall into three categories: they don't have time to spend on managing social media, they don't have the inclination, and 'other'. At The BPc, we can definitely assist with the first two and may be able to help with the 'other' category. Ideally, we work with you rather than doing it all for you, so you still have to be slightly social but just with us!
We're not about mass tweets, we are about interaction; quality not quantity. If that sounds like the way you want to work, get in touch! You can comment on here or send a message via Facebook or Twitter.