If you're a solo entrepreneur, also known as a solopreneur, you need to ration your time carefully. You're operating without the benefits of a team and, most likely, your budget is fairly limited. Social media provides many free and low-cost strategies to reach your audience. However, there are many ways to use social media so it's important to identify the strategies that provide the best returns. Here are 8 social media tips that are especially useful for solopreneurs:
1. Identify the Right Platforms
When you're operating a solo enterprise, you need to ration your time wisely. Don't try to be everywhere or you'll spread yourself too thin. Identify the social media sites where your audience is most active. You also have to consider the particular needs of your industry.
Facebook, of course, has customers in just about every demographic so everyone really needs a presence there. Travel-related businesses, for example, rely a great deal on visuals. Instagram and possibly Pinterest give you a chance to show off glamorous destinations and landscapes. If you do B2B marketing, LinkedIn is a must. Research your audience and test your results to determine which sites are worth your effort.
2. Get More Attention with Your Profiles
As a solopreneur, you need to be mindful of ways to build your personal brand. On social media sites, brand building starts with your profiles. It's easy to overlook many simple techniques to make your profiles more eye-catching and informative.
Use a quality headshot for your profile picture. A headshot puts a face to your profile while a logo or other image keeps you hidden.
Use a brandable and easy-to-remember display name. If your personal profile has a name such as KrazyKat457, change it to something relevant to your business. On LinkedIn, you can create a customized URL.
Bio. This is where you provide a good summary of who you are and what you have to offer.
Link. Choose your link carefully. This may differ from one platform to another. You may also make temporary changes for special promotions. If you're building a mailing list, link to your opt-in page.
Custom images and background. Never settle for default backgrounds. Customize your profile with your logo, images, and a background that's a good match for your brand.
3. Create Content That Drives Engagement
Without a social media team to generate massive amounts of content, you want to generate as much engagement as possible with each action. Here are some ways to get the most out of your efforts:
Keep up with the latest news and trends. Cover topics that your audience really cares about. Look for news stories and events that are timely and relevant.
Use quality images. Social Media Today reports that visual content is 40x more likely to be shared than text-only posts.
Create videos. Whether you appear in your own videos or make animated or whiteboard videos, people simply love video. One tip to keep in mind is that native videos on social media are more likely to be seen and shared than those from YouTube or other sites. A study from Quintly showed that native videos on Facebook get 10x more shares than YouTube videos.
Encourage user-generated content (UGC). Getting your followers to contribute their own photos and videos lightens your load. Hold contests and simply invite people to share content on timely themes. On Instagram and Twitter, create hashtags to go with your campaigns for greater reach.
Track your social media metrics. Learn which topics generate the most engagement. Find out what days and times are best for posting.
4. Use Social Media to Build Your Email List
An email list is a valuable tool for any marketer. It gives you the chance to contact your customers and prospects whenever you want with your latest offers. Along with your website, social media can help you build your list faster.
Create a sign-up button on your Facebook Business Page.
Invite people to sign up to your list while broadcasting live on Facebook or Instagram.
Put a link to your opt-in page on all your social media profiles.
Invest in advertising to build your list. You need to emphasize the value of signing up for your newsletter. Offer a gift to motivate people to sign up.
5. Create Stories
Facebook and Instagram Stories are getting more popular all the time with 500 million people using Instagram Stories daily. This is a strategy that's ideal for solopreneurs as all you need is your smartphone to start broadcasting. Since Stories are featured at the top of the page, you have a chance to capture more attention than with regular posts.
Stories are only visible for 24 hours so you should focus on timely content. You can share some helpful information, give your take on a news story (preferably related to your industry), or provide an inside look at your business. People look to Stories for authenticity and real-time happenings so don't worry about getting everything perfect. Just be yourself.
6. Find Strategic Partners
Solopreneurs need to be especially alert for opportunities to partner with other businesses and influencers. Since you can only create so much content yourself, connecting with others gives you a chance to widen your reach without putting in lots of hours or investing a large amount of money.
Identify blogs and social media pages in your industry that aren't direct competitors. Mention and link to them in your own content. Some will return the favor. Reach out to influencers who discuss issues that your audience cares about. Aside from people with large social media followings, look for authors, podcasters, and vloggers with popular video channels. In addition to linking to their content, offer to interview them.
7. Use Groups to Make Connections
Social media groups are a good way to expand your reach and build your brand. Facebook groups, in particular, can help you connect with people in any industry. You can join existing groups or start your own. LinkedIn also has groups.
Although they haven't been getting much public attention lately, LinkedIn groups let you connect with business owners and decision-makers. For all social media groups, the key is to participate in a friendly and helpful manner. Don't directly promote yourself as this comes across as spammy. Those who are interested can visit your profile. This is one of many reasons to make sure that your profiles are compelling, optimized, and up to date.
8. Use Automation Tools with Care
Tools and services that let you automate social media tasks are especially appealing to solo entrepreneurs with limited time. You can schedule posts and post to multiple platforms at the same time. However, don't overuse automation as this can detract from the quality of your content. For example, posting the exact same posts to many platforms can turn off followers who may get tired of the repetition. It's better to change things up a bit. Use automation when appropriate but maintain the personal touch as well.
As a solopreneur, you need to use your time and resources wisely. Social media provides you with the tools to reach your audience in an efficient and targeted way. However, with so many platforms and features, you need to be discerning about where to focus. Always listen to your followers and customers and test your results so you can deliver the kind of content that your audience wants.
Get industry news, travel business tips, and more delivered to your inbox.
We hate SPAM. We will never sell your information, for any reason.