Tweeting Goddess as she is better known in the social media sphere says this is a time for small businesses to really shine on social media and she says there is no need to panic if you are still not sure how to navigate it all.
“People need to remember that social media really is about connecting with people and making contacts and you already through your own customer base have people who are interested in your business so you need to start by building on that and go from there”.
While working as a Social Media strategist Samantha is also founder of the global Women’s Inspire Network (womeninspire.ie) which is a global on-line network created to help and support women entrepreneurs.
“I say to my clients all the time you need to start with a plan and get to know which social platform or platforms your audience is on. If you are unsure do a quick survey and ask them. If your desired customers are aged 16 to 35 then they are most likely on Instagram and Snapchat. If your desired customers are aged 35 to 55 plus you should be looking at Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn. Learn about the different platforms and learn about google analytics (ie seeing where your traffic is coming from). There are some excellent free tutorials on YouTube and if you need help there is plenty out there.” Twitter she says is an excellent B2B platform mostly aimed at over 35s – “I would say open a Twitter account if you don’t have one already. It is where the latest news happens and so it is constantly updated with information which is reliable once you follow the right sources. (Samantha has a list of suggested sources on tweetinggoddess.com).
“Become an expert in your field and connect with those in the same area…. it’s where magic happens and Twitter is an amazing platform to build relationships. It has a very large community of small business owners who use it to build relationships, drive traffic to their website, drive sales and show that you are the Go To person in your niche.
“I always tweet out tips and articles that show I know my business. When you share your knowledge not only are you showing you are the expert, but you are also helping others learn. People buy from other people so if they trust you then they will recommend you”.
“Your content needs to be of interest and it can not just be sell, sell, sell. You need to give your customers and followers something extra”.
Getting noticed on social media does she says involve maybe stepping out of your comfort zone.
“There is no point in doing a sell, sell and throwing out ads all the time (you are not going to get sales if you are just pushing out product all the time). Customers like to see behind the scenes, show what your shop, your restaurant, your office looks like, your team and how you help people. At the moment people want to experience hope, joy, compassion so if you are a business owner then show people behind the scenes, show them the parcels going out, the Christmas decorations etc. Make sure you are mentioning others in the community, sharing your knowledge and supporting other businesses in your area is key”.
“I would say one of the most important things on social media is being authentic. Being ‘real’ means being honest, it’s why I think many corporates fail at social media but where small business owners can win”.
Tweets with an image are much more likely to be retweeted than a tweet with no image and if you aren’t using video yet Samantha says you risk getting left behind so practice and she suggests joining a network like womeninspirenetwork.com so you can get used to chatting about your business with others.
People she says can get hooked on the amount of followers but it is she says about having the right people following you. You need to ask yourself are they people you want in your network? Are they spreading the word about you? If they are its because they feel you give value and they know, like and trust you.
She says you will know which platform works best for you – Google, Facebook, Instagram, Linkedin, Twitter all have great analytics that you can use for free and if this is too tricky she suggests you hire a professional to do this for you.
“You won’t please everyone but if you are hitting your target market, that’s what counts. Not everyone likes me. It doesn’t matter”, Kelly says. “If you are adding value, people will remember you for that”.
“If you want to drive more sales then make sure your website is good. How many times have you clicked on a link in a tweet and gone to read or buy something and it takes you to a website that looks awful and isn’t user friendly? It sounds obvious but get a professional website done.
Samantha knows first-hand how difficult it can be to market your own small business from the kitchen table because she was that person ten years.
“I started my then business Funky Goddess which was a ‘Welcome to Womanhood’ gift box for parents to give to their daughters when they reached that milestone of their first period. I remember I had absolutely no money for marketing. I was on my own, feeling lonely and isolated working from the kitchen table. I used Twitter and Facebook to promote my business. It began as a simple series of conversations. I reached out to parents and we started chatting and conversations turned to connections and connections turned to followers. As my following grew, I was approached by other local businesses to ask if I could help them capture the same growth that I had achieved. By applying the same principles of engaging, interacting and always trying to add value, I showed them how to master social media and use it to get a return on investment for their business. It wasn’t long before I sold my company to focus on my new-found passion. Having built a loyal following of over 56k on Twitter Samantha knows how to harness the power of social media and make it work.
“I started from scratch and went from kitchen table business to digital influencer, all thanks to the magic of Twitter”.