Build Followers, Get ‘Likes’, Get Customers: Growing your business startup through social media

social mediaIf you’re a young entrepreneur and your business startup isn’t utilizing social media, chances are you’re missing fans. Or more correctly, you’re not getting ‘liked’ or tweeted and missing customers.
 
Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and other social media networks aren’t just for fun anymore, they’re critical in building your business success. This is especially true for a smaller business startup needing to gain traction and momentum. If a young entrepreneur isn’t SPEAKING with their brand, chances are their target market won’t even know they exist.
 
Social media can be daunting to some young entrepreneurs if they don’t know the lingo or feel like they don’t know what to actually say. Don’t let fear stand in the way of your business startup and eventual success. It may feel awkward at first, but doesn’t everything? The good news for you, Young Entrepreneur, is you don’t have to be a creative genius to gain followers and the coveted ‘likes’, social media is all about being genuine and engaging with the target market for your brand.
 
Major Players
 
The most effective social media outlets for a business startup to take part in right away are: Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. Half of small businesses have taken in customers through their Facebook page; 51% of people on Facebook who ‘like’ a business’s page are more inclined to make purchases. For Twitter that rate increases to a 64% likelihood of that person following the Tweets from a business brand. LinkedIn has a more ‘professional’ vibe and is a powerful networking tool and platform for longer conversations and Group Discussions. [Fun infographic from Kissmetrics that gave us some great statistics HERE.]
 
Conversation
 
Merely being on social media isn’t going to do a young entrepreneur any favors if those tweets and Facebook posts grow stale. The world of social media moves FAST, as in three days between tweets is equivalent of three years. Keep your posts current, tweet as often as possible, and vary the kinds of posts you put out. Don’t confuse posting often with posting anything…always retain a level of quality with what you share.
 
Naturally a business startup would like to share links to their company website, but aim for a ratio of 1:5 for website links per tweet to avoid looking to spammy. Retweet what other people have to say, reply to others, and ENGAGE with the community. Tip: It’s been found that tweeting and Facebook posting motivational quotes tends to get picked up and shared the most. Why? Because…
 
Show You’re Human
 
…everyone is human, including you, Young Entrepreneur. Your customers respond to tweets and posts that show you are human. Expressing empathy, excitement, compassion, motivation, perseverance, and even disappointment is something everyone can relate to. A brand who ‘feels’ relatable to their target market establishes a connection…the first step in creating customer-brand loyalty. Peoples’ personal relationships also influences which businesses they ‘like’; simply seeing their friend of family member ‘liking’ a particular business translates to their following suit: 38% of Facebook users ‘liked’ a business’s page because their friend or family member did. Engage with one customer to increase the chances their friends and family will want to join the conversation.
 
Patience
 
There is no magic trick to social media overnight success…unless you’re Lady Gaga. It will take time for your business startup to build a following of hundreds, thousands, and beyond. The good news is the faster a young entrepreneur gets posting and tweeting, the closer they are to that business startup fan following. Tip: It takes a Twitter account breaking through the 1,000 tweets mark before they gain over 100 followers. [A great article from Forbes HERE that gave us this statistic.]
 
Continuity
 
The fans and customers for your business startup also appreciate being able to expect when to hear from you. Timing of your posts and tweets establishes that continuity. Facebook pages allow you to schedule posts, and there are services to do the same thing on Twitter. Just make sure you’re posts aren’t reading as spammy and scheduled posts/tweets are great to increase your social media following. Tip: Studies show that for a business startup, the best time to tweet are weekdays between 12pm and 2pm, this is the window of time that your tweets are most likely to be seen and shared.
 
A young entrepreneur needs to think of social media as a given for their marketing, networking, and effective business startup plan. The good news is, it’s fun…trust us, you’ll like it. #addicting
 
Tweet us, Facebook post, or leave a comment for us with your answers:
 
1) If you already use social media for personal pleasure, how often do you tweet or post?
2) In thinking of the business that you are a customer to, how many of them are you also a Facebook fan or following them on twitter?
3) What is one of your social media tips or suggestions you’d like to share?
 
Take your business startup idea and write an effective business plan and enroll with The Sacramento Entrepreneurship Academy.

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