5 effective solutions to solve your biggest social media challenges
As a social media specialist, I’ve seen first-hand how common social media pain points can affect small businesses. I’ve also seen how these businesses can thrive when they develop a social media strategy that works for their brand. The consensus? Social media marketing is far too valuable to ignore, and the challenges can be avoided if you prepare.
If your business hasn’t taken part in social media, or your current efforts are falling flat, I’m here to share the info you need to succeed. Keep reading to learn more about social media marketing, common pain points small businesses encounter and how you can prepare for them.
Is social media good for small businesses?
I know what you’re thinking: If there are pain points for me as a business owner, why should I even take the time to do social media?
As the social media specialist at Insight, I know first-hand the stresses of social media, but I’ve also seen its immense benefits for various clients. There truly is no limit to what you can do with social media marketing, which means businesses in any industry can make it their own to get the specific engagement and results they are looking for.
Benefits of social media for small businesses
When executed properly, there are many benefits of social media that business owners can and should be taking advantage of. Some of the benefits of social media marketing that I find most valuable are the ability to engage directly with your audience, increase brand awareness and easily share content.
Engage directly with your audience.
Social media engagement should be your top priority. This is your opportunity to connect with your audience. Not only does this allow your audience to feel heard but it shows them that you value their comments and opinions.
In turn, you receive feedback regarding your content through comments, likes, shares and other methods of engagement.
Increase brand awareness.
Having a presence on social media not only creates awareness for your brand, but also allows your customers to see more of your business. It’s up to you to decide how you’ll showcase your brand, whether through graphics, videos explaining your skills or even introductory team content to make your audience feel more connected to you and your brand.
Social media marketing also gives you the unique ability to easily cater to your target audience. You can build awareness for your brand in just your local area, or reach people all over the world if that’s your goal.
Easily share content.
One of the biggest pros of social media is how easily you can share content on not just one but all of your social media channels. The technology available allows even the least tech-savvy person to share content on multiple profiles.
So, even if you aren’t familiar with social media yet, the barrier to entry is low. It’s worth trying out just to see how advantageous the tools can be to boost your marketing, awareness and sales.
Don’t make these social media mistakes.
With all the benefits of social media, there are things about it that can hinder your business. Over the course of my work with clients, I’ve seen just about every mistake businesses can make on social media.
Three of the most common mistakes I see businesses making with their social media include failing to identify their goals, jumping in without a plan and failing to engage with their audience.
Don’t: forget to identify your social media marketing goals.
I’ve lost track of how many clients have come to me for social media management without having a clear goal in mind. This is a big mistake because you’ll never know if your social media efforts are working if you don’t have a specific goal you’re hoping to achieve.
Make sure you set these goals ahead of time so that you don’t burn out before seeing the real value of your efforts.
Don’t: jump in without a strategic plan.
Every good business owner knows you need a plan for pretty much everything, especially when marketing your business through social media. If you don’t have a plan to upstart your social media, you’ll likely become overwhelmed and unorganized. That is definitely something we want to avoid, so make sure to create a strategic plan before getting started.
Don’t: ignore comments and fail to engage with your audience.
Engaging with your audience isn’t just a benefit for you—it creates a community within your audience and lets them know you value their comments and opinions. Without that constant and consistent engagement with them, your audience will not feel heard and eventually unfollow your brand, which is a huge mistake.
Finally, and most importantly, don’t let these challenges keep you from participating on social media. With a strategic plan, you can avoid these mistakes and prepare for the most common social media pain points small businesses experience.
5 of the most common social media pain points for small businesses
Social media marketing is a powerful business tool, but it isn’t easy, especially when you’re running your business or other marketing efforts at the same time. To ensure you are prepared, make sure you are ready to combat these common social media challenges for small businesses.
1. Maintaining a consistent post schedule
Posting quality content on a regular basis can be quite challenging while you run your business. You don’t want to overwhelm yourself by trying to maintain an unrealistic schedule, but it’s important to offer consistency for your followers.
Solution: I highly recommend using a social media CMS platform to organize and schedule your posts. This way, you can spend some time each week or month organizing your posts, and then let the program do the hard work of posting for you at regular times.
Sprout Social has become my go-to tool for managing multiple social media accounts, scheduling posts and responding to comments.
2. Getting a return on investment (ROI)
Measuring ROI is always tricky, but it can be especially difficult to measure the true value of your social media marketing efforts. Many business owners want to see a monetary return on their social media investment, but that’s usually not how this marketing channel works.
Social media is about growing and engaging with your audience, rather than solely focusing on making sales and getting clicks. Business owners and marketing professionals need to adjust their thinking when it comes to social media ROI and realize that value is being created, even if it isn’t a large monetary return.
Solution: Rather than focus on monetary return, focus on the less tangible value social media provides for your business. Are you seeing an increase in website traffic? Are you gaining more followers and post engagement? Have your leads been increasing? This is the real ROI you can expect from your social media marketing efforts.
3. Discovering and curating content
Unless you’re already a highly popular brand with loads of loyal customers, you won’t gain a social media following overnight. To establish your brand’s social media presence, you will have to post consistent, high-value content targeted to your ideal customer.
Solution: Don’t overthink this pain point too much. A lot of content is already right at your fingertips. If you have run out of ideas or simply don’t know where to start, user-generated content is a perfect solution.
This content can include guest posts, images, online reviews or even testimonials. User-generated content is a great solution to this pain point but don’t let it be the bulk of your content.
4. Staying informed on the latest social media trends
Every other month, there are new features, updates and changes in algorithms across social media platforms. Even as a full-time social media specialist, staying up to date on the latest trends is a tedious task for me. So how are business owners supposed to do it and run their business?
Solution: One of the biggest tips I can give to business owners running social media is to participate in it yourself. Whatever platforms you’re planning to use for your business should be platforms you are familiar with and use at least somewhat regularly. This way, keeping up with the trends will be second-nature to you because you’ll be seeing them in real-time and experiencing them the way your customers would.
Just keep in mind that not every social media trend will be the right fit for your brand. You don’t have to hop on every bandwagon. Evaluate each trend and decide whether it aligns with your mission, values and positioning before taking part.
5. Time management
Social media may seem easy from the outside—it only takes a few seconds to write a post and send it out into the world, after all. But when you get into the nitty-gritty details that come along with marketing on social media, you’ll realize it goes far beyond that. If you are trying to manage your social media and run your business at the same time, it’s likely that one will suffer.
Solution: If you’re serious about building a strong presence on social media that provides value for your brand, go all in and get the help you need. Investing in a professional marketing service like those we offer at Insight means you can focus on running your business while experts ensure you’re getting the most out of your social media presence.
Don’t let your social media become a pain point.
Together, we’ve looked at the many benefits of social media, along with the challenges. Yes, difficulties may arise, but you certainly don’t want to miss out on the benefits. By preparing for the social media pain points small businesses often experience, you can avoid these pitfalls and boost your business like never before.
Our services at Insight can take a lot of the pain points away. We can easily create and implement a strategy for your business on social media without you having to stress about the pain points because it is one of the many things we do best.
Your full-service social media solution
Not a fan of challenges? The full-service marketing solutions here at Insight make it easier than ever to grow your social media presence and boost your brand awareness. Contact us today to ditch the stress and watch your social presence thrive.