Recently I ran an event for a local networking group, and we had a great discussion about using social media for business.
The result was some really valuable information, and I wanted to share with you.
The theme for the event was a question, what do you believe is the one thing a business should do on social media to not only survive but thrive post-pandemic?
THE BACK STORY
Prior to running the event, I wanted to reach out and ask both my general community and my business buddies my question.
The feedback blew me away, I had literally dozens and dozens of replies.
Results came from the community as a whole, business owners, friends, colleagues…lots of people who have been employees and not necessarily in the entrepreneurial space, for which I was so grateful for.
The reason why I was so excited with this is simple…all the answers came from people who are my clients, and ideal customers…nothing like hearing from the people who are in your sphere!
Questions like…’ how has the pandemic affected businesses?’ and ‘What do we think we should be doing to stand out post-pandemic on social media?’
James Short – Owner of The Calm Nest and GoalsTribe kicked off the conversation with a really good point. For years there have been so many businesses who when asked about using social media for business, say things like… “Oh yes, that’s something I’ve got to get around to, or ‘I’ve got to do it eventually.”
James believes that, since the pandemic began in 2020, a shift in how we do business has clearly happened, leaving people asking, “What do I do now?”.
Now it’s more about surviving and working toward thriving. It’s about how do we keep going and succeed, not in the next month, or next year, but today… tomorrow.
What this has done to social media and business is altering the dialogue … How do we shift our content and messaging from pre-covid aspirational to what is relevant now? At the same time, many are going through a lot of mindset stuff – overcoming fear, overcoming overwhelm, and learning how to be relevant in their audience’s viewpoint.
Because so much more content is being consumed now that many are staying at home working, the question, of course, is how do you stay relevant, front of mind, and provide value to people, and to your audience consistently?
The answer is plain and simple…ask yourself how can you help your audience right now?
James went on to say that it all comes back to the ideal client and what you can provide for them.
SPEAK WITH YOUR PEOPLE
What are they going through? Where are they at in their businesses?”
I’ve had two friends with brick-and-mortar businesses, who have closed their doors as a result of the pandemic. One was a well-known business in London and they have literally shut their doors.
There are also those who are deflated, stressed and still holding on. Being in Far-North Queensland I have spoken to various business owners, some are doing ok, and others…well they tell me they are struggling but continuing to see what happens.
Sounds like the rest of the world is too.
So ask yourself, what are your ideal customers thinking? What are they feeling?
If you are not sure…reach out and talk to them. See how you can help.
TACTICS TO THINK AND ACT ON RIGHT NOW
Tactic #1 Obviously every single business owner wants business growth.
How does this play out post-pandemic?
My thoughts on this are to focus on what you’ve got…all those emails and connections you have made over the years, and let’s not forget to focus on building your community online.
People will come to you, when they know you, like and trust you, and if you’ve already got a community, it’s about how to build it whilst other avenues of growth are not active.
There are loads of places to build your own online community, Facebook and LinkedIn groups to name a few. If you don’t want to start your own, do some research and choose three that are in alignment with you…and not the ones where all your competitors hang out.
For example, if my time is limited, then hanging in a social media marketing group may not be the best use of my time.
Why would we say grow a community?
Because your people will tell other people, and they tell other people, and then you’ve got this whole community that you can help, guide, and inspire through these times. They will say “Hey listen, I like what I’m hearing, can you help me in this area?
Tactic #2: Show Up and be consistent
Now back to the post I put up and the dozens and dozens of comments.
There were a number of people from the general and business community who said to show up and be consistent.
My question to James on this was simple…What does consistency mean?
The caveat here is this. If you are not showing up consistently, the algorithm will not be kind.
With that said, if you’re not posting much at all, it can take a little time to get up to daily.
I asked James what his secret to consistency was. How do you stay on top of your game?
James’ advice is simple, it comes down to planning, mapping out, and creating a couple of weeks of content at a time.
Pro Tip: A great tip to work out what to post about is to take a look at what conversations you’ve been having with your customers and clients, what are their pains, what are their gains, and what are jobs they want to get done?
Review this every week on a Friday… Who have you spoken to throughout the week? And what have been their frustrations? What have been their concerns? What do they want?”
There’s your content right there.
Tactic #3 Google Alerts
See what is being written for your industry, what is trending?
This is a free service and super easy to set up, to get a notification to any articles that are written.
BOOM receive a notification, and it’s an easy way to share what we call curated content, please make sure you say something of your own opinion, and why you are sharing it.
And it’s free, guys. I highly recommend Google Alerts.
Even if you’re only one week in advance…plan, plan, plan… it could be a motivational quote, it could be an article or blog, or a video.
It’s not so much about the type of content you post, it’s more important to be consistent, relevant, and provide value for your audience.
Tactic #4 Tips from the general public, after all, they ARE your customer.
Be visible and communicate effectively, remembering the diversity of the customer. Not everyone is tech-savvy.
Support each other without expectation of reciprocation.
Don’t presume everyone out there knows about you, who you are and what you do.
Make better videos that separate you from the rest.
It’s not just about providing business content, people want to hear about your passions your interests, and also your journey. Because once again, people will buy from you if they know, like and trust you.
Share a bit about you, and your journey…every single one of us have competitors and this is the ONE thing that differentiates you from the rest. Use it with strategy…I am not talking about hanging out all that dirty laundry but sharing it with purpose.
It’s all about the human-to-human relationship.
I think people get so stuck in what they do and portray that as who they are. And we are not what we do.
With the strange times going on right now, it can be very easy to let fear take over. As a very special person to me, Mandy Saligari once said…’ Emotions are what we have the most of and know the least about: handle them well or they will handle you’.
As business owners, we can either go with the flow and wait to see what comes next or use this time for reflection, for a time to leverage what we have and not worry about what we don’t.
Use the four tactics here to improve your social media presence, because the world is full of Google searches, Facebook follows and scrolls through a newsfeed, NOW is the time to leverage your community.
It will happen…just not overnight.
Have a great week,