Should I Post This?
Dos and Don’t for Small Business Social Media
Social Media can be overwhelming. Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Snapchat, and a million other apps in the app store are taking over the way we communicate with our customers. But most of these apps don’t come with instructions other than how to post, so many small business owners are left feeling confused about the “rules” of engagement and hesitant to use these platforms to their fullest potential.
The goal for social media for business should always be to create a community around your brand. When you are deciding what to share, when to share it, and what to expect after you share something, keep these dos and don’ts in mind.
- Post pictures that you like and that reflect your vision for your brand. You should be able to flip through your feed and like every single picture (not literally, please don't hit like on your own pictures.) If you don’t a photo that means you are trying too hard. You are trying to post pictures you think other people will like, and this almost always backfires. Trust yourself to be representative of your businesses brand.
- Post pictures that you own. You should be sharing mostly pictures that you have taken, or paid a photographer to take for you. It is fine to include pictures from other sources, but when your feed becomes nothing but stock photos and funny memes, you may be missing a chance to connect with clients/customers who are on your page to know more about your authentic brand.
- Post pictures of people!! Even if you are selling a product, people want to see pictures of people. Get it? If you only post inspiration quotes, you are missing an opportunity to connect with your audience.
- Get help if you need it. Our free tutorial “Creating A Content Calendar” is a great place to start if you are just learning or need new ideas for your social media strategy. But if you simply do not have the time to take advantage of this free way to get in front of potential clients/customers, consider hiring someone to do it for you. If you have a client who does social media on the side ask for help. If you have the funds to hire a full or part time marketing manager, it WILL be a good investment to take your branding to the next level. Plus it could be could be cheaper than that billboard or magazine ad you were considering.
- Post pictures of your clients and customers that are unflattering. Really look at each photo before you click publish. I have seen plenty of people posing in front of an open bathroom, or clients with their eyes closed. Even if you aren’t tagging a client, they are not going to be pleased if you are sharing in image that doesn’t show them in the best light.
- Post pictures of your products that are unflattering. I am the first to admit, I am a terrible photographer. This is why I hire a professional or trust my team members who have a better eye for design when choosing photos to share. I see this mistake made most often in restaurants. If the lighting is dim to create a dining experience, it is probably not the best place to take a photo of a plate.
- Post just to post. If you don’t have a plan, you may find that you are sharing just to share. When it comes to social media (or any publication that promotes your brand) quality over quantity should be your motto. (Hint hint, learn how to Create A Content Calendar.)
- Post too much. The rules are different for different platforms, but for Facebook and Instagram, one to two posts per day is plenty. Going over that amount is the quickest way to get people to unfollow. On Twitter and Pinterest, you can communicate more, but again, we want quality not quantity. If what you are sharing isn’t meaningful, it doesn’t matter how many times you share it.
- Use Social Media as your main method for communication. It is very easy to think that you should be posting all of your events, sales, and company updates on social media, but that is simply not the case. You can share this type of information, but it should be limited. Make sure you are sharing things that are cool and interesting, not “Sale Sale Sale”. This is social media, not salesman media.
- Click like on your own pictures. I catch people new to social media who click like on all their own pictures and this is a no no, that is only learned with experience. As a follower, I assume you like your own picture or you wouldn’t have posted it.