With 4.76 billion active social media users worldwide, small businesses like you can leverage social channels to get the word out. This will help you maintain relationships with customers, build brand awareness, and generate leads.
That said, social media PR is one of the best ways to reach out to people who may be interested in what you have to offer. Social media PR is the process of planning, executing, and monitoring messages about your brand on various social networks. The goal is to improve the visibility and perceptions about your company.
In this post, you’ll learn five social media PR tips and tricks you can follow for your small business.
1. Add Social Media Buttons to Your Messages
Adding social media buttons to your messages is one simple way to improve your brand presence and drive more leads. Think about it. When people share your content on social media, you get more brand exposure.
Some of the collateral you can add your social media buttons to include blog posts, email content, and press releases.
Check out this sample press release from Crate & Barrel and the social media buttons on your right, below the title:
Most of the popular social media platforms like Twitter and Facebook have their own sharing buttons.
For instance, Twitter has customizable buttons that will allow visitors to share your content on its platform. To use Twitter share buttons, visit https://publish.twitter.com/. Then click on Twitter buttons. It will show you the image below:
Then, select “share buttons.”
To share your messages on other platforms besides Facebook and Twitter, you can use social sharing tools or plugins like ShareThis, Shareaholic, and AddThis. These plugins enable visitors to share your message on their personal or professional networks.
Brands use various ways to grow their social media accounts. Some would partner with influencers within specific platforms (more on this later). Others would buy Instagram followers to expedite their growth. Adding buttons is one of the other techniques that can accelerate your growth on social media channels. Use social media buttons to your advantage.
2. Be Consistent
Consistency is key if you want to maximize the PR benefits of social media for your small business. This is a key principle emphasized even in your typical ecommerce, B2B, or SaaS marketing plan.
But what does being consistent mean?
Consistency here means ensuring that your company’s principles and identity are expressed in a consistent and recognized manner. If you know what those are already, great! If you have a hard time figuring them out just yet, a consumer PR agency can help you discover them. It can also help you determine how to highlight these concepts in your marketing collateral.
If you’re consistent in communicating your principles and identity, all your marketing content should have a consistent look and feel across your social media marketing channels (and other platforms).
Let’s take Rudy’s Can’t Fail Cafe as an example.
Here’s a post on its Instagram account:
Now check out one of its Facebook posts:
One look at the two social media posts and you know they come from the same brand. It’s because of the consistency in visuals and language tone.
In other words, consistency is great for brand recognition.
But don’t just ensure your content across marketing platforms has the same look or feel. You want to post this content regularly, too. This is the only way you can make your audience associate your brand with your specific values.
3. Utilize Hashtags
Hashtags in your posts increase your visibility on social media platforms. When people search for a specific topic, you increase your chances of appearing in search results.
But how do you know which hashtags to use? Simple: Pay attention to the hashtags used by your competitors and social media influencers within your niche.
For instance, Wizardpins utilizes different hashtags when posting on social media. They use the hashtags #branding and #custompins to target customers looking for quality custom pins for their businesses. You can use the same hashtags if you also sell the same product.
You can also use search engines like Google and Bing to look for hashtags. Simply enter your niche or industry followed by “hashtags”
Another way is to use a hashtag generator.
For the best results, develop your own branded hashtags. Branded hashtags can amplify your message and create awareness for your brand. They can make a positive impact on your overall social media strategy.
4. Collaborate With Influencers
Influencers can help your brand reach new audiences and create word-of-mouth marketing. They have the power to sway their audience. So, when they promote your brand, you’re more likely to generate conversions.
There are several ways you can work with a social media influencer. You can do this via complementary goods in exchange for reviews or full-on paid sponsorships.
You can look for influencers in several ways. One of the most straightforward ways is to Google the top influencers in your niche. Another way is to use influencer marketing platforms. These platforms can also give you access to the demographics of an influencer’s audience.
Let’s say you already have your list of influencers. Great! Now the question is this: Whom should you pick?
There are different types of influencers you can choose from:
- Megainfluencers: With more than a million followers
- Macro-influencers: With followers ranging from 500,000 to one million
- Mid-tier influencers: With followers ranging from 50,000 to 500,000
- Micro-influencers: With followers ranging from 10,000 to 50,000
- Nano-influencers: With followers ranging from 1,000 to 10,000
How to Choose the Right Influencer
As a small business, though, it’s best to look for nano-influencers or micro-influencers. This is because, like you, they focus on a niche. So even if they have a small following, they usually have a more personal bond with their followers. That means the content they post tends to have higher engagement, which can translate to conversions for you.
When choosing an influencer, you should also understand their audience. Your chosen influencer’s audience should be the same people you’re marketing your product to. Don’t choose a travel influencer if you sell food, for example. With the type of product you sell, a food influencer is a better fit.
Also, look at the values your influencer stands for. For instance, you wouldn’t want to be associated with an influencer who openly shuns vegetarian food if you sell vegetarian food. Finally, you should consider your chosen influencer’s engagement rates; the higher the rate, the more influential the influencer may be. Consider your budget as well.
By collaborating with influential social media figures, you can improve your PR strategy and achieve better results.
5. Be Proactive
Don’t start strengthening your relationships with your audience only when a crisis hits. You need to be proactive. How can you do this?
Listen to your customers. Use social media listening tools to determine public sentiment for your brand. If you see a negative comment, respond immediately. If there was a mistake on your part, apologize. Give customers the assurance you’ll rectify the mistake and make it up to them. Then use that feedback to improve your products and services.
If you see a positive comment, thank your customers, too. This will make them feel like you take the time to look at what they have to say and respond to them.
Check out this example from a barber shop in New York City. The shop took the time to answer a satisfied customer’s comment even if it merely consisted of emoticons:
You can be proactive by having a social media PR crisis plan in place, too. This will outline what you’ll do if bad press comes your way. Your plan should include any measures that you will take to reduce damage, maintain your credibility and reassure your clients.
Being proactive can help protect your company’s reputation online. It can help you maintain positive long-term customer relationships.
PR social media can help your brand in many ways. It can help you establish and nurture a good relationship with your customers. The result is increased audience engagement and a good brand reputation.
In this article, you learned five PR social media tips and tricks for small businesses. You can improve your PR social media by adding social media buttons to your messages. Be consistent and utilize hashtags. Also, don’t forget to collaborate with influencers and be proactive.
Social media PR is a powerful marketing tool. Small businesses like you can increase visibility, cultivate trust with their target audiences, and generate leads with it.
In other words, if you know how to leverage social media PR, you’ll reap the best results.
Harry Flynn leads the digital marketing team at Twicsy, a site providing services to Instagram users. He enjoys travelling.