The realisation hit me like a tonne of bricks. We have come a long way from sending letters that’s for sure. The world as we know it has been transformed by instant and somewhat impersonal communication. People now spend more time watching YouTube videos than watching TV and if you venture out of your house, you’ll find that wherever you look, someone is always on their phone – most probably checking their social media newsfeeds or replying to messages on their social media chat.
It’s safe to say that social media is here to stay and has become an integral part of conducting business today. I’d like to help business owners get the most out of their social media efforts. With that said, here are answers to five of the most common questions I receive.
1. How much time should I spend on social media?
The short answer: 20 minutes a day. A quick review of your sites, popping in to give a like here, a retweet there. You should be good. A more extensive answer: Consider quality over quantity in this instance. If you’re spending 60 minutes a day on Facebook interacting with your network, answering questions, and developing new connections, that’s not necessarily a bad use of time. But if you’re spending an hour — or more — aimlessly wandering through your news feed, it’s time to start thinking about how your social media activities are stealing time from your more productive business-building activities.
2. What are hashtags?
A word or phrase on social media — Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, etc. — preceded by a hash or pound sign (#) and used to identify messages on a specific topic, according to Oxford Dictionaries. Take advantage of hashtags to follow along with conversations about a certain topic (bookmark this site: search.twitter.com).
3. What type of information should I post?
Social media allows you to show off a bit. It lets you let people know what makes you tick. If you’re a business owner, especially one that not only provides a product or service but who also recruits individuals to join your company, this is valuable. Share information that interests you. Be interested and interesting. Don’t forget the “social” part of social media. If you share something, make sure you take time to respond to comments or engage in a discussion with your audience. Above all, don’t feel like you have to generate a tonne of unique information on your own. Take advantage of content that is already available to you that might resonate with your social audiences. For example, content on USANA News Australia for instance which could apply to a wide range of potential customers.
4. Do I need to have a presence on multiple social sites?
Short answer: No. It is a common misconception that you need to utilise every site. This is where you really need to determine your overall business goals and objectives. Find out what those are, and then see which social media site(s) can best help you achieve those goals. Think about the audience you want to reach and explore various options. If you’ve only got 20 minutes a day for social media, you won’t want to spread yourself too thin across many sites.
5. Why should I care about social media?
I’ve given this one a lot of thought. In fact, it’s the focus of a presentation I give to our new leaders each quarter when they visit the Home Office for Leadership Summit. Here’s why I think you as a business owner should care:
– Communication: Put simply, it’s a big way people communicate today. They’re asking Facebook friends (which may or may not be the same as real-life friends) for recommendations all the time. Social media provides you with the opportunity to let others know who you are and what you do. It also allows you to answer questions in your area(s) of expertise.
– Earned media: It’s the value you gain from what other people say about your business. They’re talking about you online, so make sure you’re there to hear what they’re saying.
– It’s where consumers are: Obviously. Step in and provide value for your potential customers.
More Social Media Questions?
Do you have additional social media questions? Ask away in the comments — or share this blog post on Facebook and include your question in your status update. One of the great aspects of social media is that it’s social. If we’re not able to answer your questions, chances are someone in your existing social network will know the answer.
Give it a try and remember to keep it social!