Social media is a wonderful thing! Over the last decade, it’s been a game changer for small business owners, who can now market themselves effectively without an army of employees and a chunky advertising budget. It allows you to be constantly connected to your audience, interacting with them in an organic way and learning what they need. You can update it in real time with product developments and sales messages, which allows you to be far more agile and responsive to market shifts. And, perhaps most important for creative entrepreneurs, is the visual nature of social media platforms like Instagram and Pinterest, which allows us to play to our natural strengths.

BUT…

It’s a love-hate relationship, isn’t it? A few years down the line, all the major platforms are saturated with content (so. much. content!), making it more and more difficult to stand out from the crowd. Then there are the ever-changing algorithms – the magical mystery maths that giveth likes and followers, then just as easily taketh them all away.

It can all be a little overwhelming. Who hasn’t sat staring at their screen, wondering what on earth to post next? We all know that creating a successful social media presence takes time and consistent effort, but sticking to your schedule can be a major challenge and feel like a neverending task. Plus, it feels like everyone else is doing a better job than you are, posting more regularly across an increasing number of platforms, using new features more effectively, and engaging with more potential clients.

So how can you raise your game? Here’s an answer you might not expect:

DON’T TRY AND DO IT ALL.

Think about it. Your time is not an unlimited asset. To get the best return on the hours you invest on marketing your business, it’s crucial that you focus on the most relevant social media platforms for your business. Or to put it more simply: better to pick one or two and do them well, than do all of them poorly.

So which channels are the right ones to focus on? The answer to that question will be different for every business, and figuring it out relies on you knowing your customers. Ask yourself:

WHERE ARE MY COUPLES PLANNING THEIR WEDDING?

In order to build a successful social media strategy, you have to understand exactly who your ideal client is and what their online habits are. Which social channels do they use most regularly? Where do they spend their time online? How do they behave there?

Another factor to consider is that each platform fulfils different objectives. For example:

  • Facebook: Hosting a group may encourage increased engagement with your followers, as you can build a personal relationship and offer them advice and support to demonstrate your expertise. Ideal for: Planners
  • Instagram: The Insta feed provides a constant stream of inspiration to your followers and shows off your work and personal style. Ideal for: Photographers, Florists, Stationers, Cake designers
  • Twitter: Twitter offers a real time newsfeed, but isn’t as visual as other platforms, so while it is seeing an increase in use by younger millennials, it may not be the best forum to promote your wedding business.
  • Pinterest: It’s important to consider Pinterest a search engine rather than social media. It’s great for sharing design and inspiration, and generating traffic to your own blog and website. Ideal for: All suppliers!

Finally, remember that the channel(s) you choose to focus on will change over time. New platforms and new features regularly shift the landscape, so it’s important to check in every so often to see if it’s still a good fit!

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Top image: Helen Warner Photography