You’re a small business owner online.
Probably you write content for publications.
Or you’re a web or graphic designer, writer or retail business owner?
I’m sure you have a social media handle for your business. And you’re probably combining one single social media accounts for both your online business and your personal life.
Well enough of the “probablies” (OK OK. That word doesn’t exist).
But to be quite frank, this is exactly the same way I started mine. When I started out as a small business owner, I didn’t have a social media page for my business.
I combined my personal page with the business page. So it’s not a big deal if you’re doing the same thing right now.
Most people start that way. However as your business grows, you’ll have to find a way to separate your personal life from your business, to some extent. Ok.
As a human on the social media, I’m sure you know there are certain etiquette we do follow to get things running smoothly.
Now, most small business owners do not really know there are social media business etiquettes for small businesses.
In fact, the few that know about it do not really see any reason why the social media etiquette for small business is a bit different from the general social media etiquette.
As a matter of fact, it doesn’t matter whether you know that there is a social media etiquette for small businesses or not…
What matters is that these things exists. And a lot of businesses are using it to shape their conversations and drive business growth.
Below is a list of the of 13 top social media etiquette for small business that can help you drive social media engagement and improve business growth…
Know your audience (KYA)
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Being on social media without knowing about your audience can be compared to going on a blind date without really knowing who you’re going to meet.
It’s also like a big guess work, where you can’t really tell what the reaction of your user will turn out turn out to be.
Since you don’t have much time to create an impression on the social media, it is very important you know your audience clearly before you embark on launching out a social media strategy.
For this reason you’ll have to research your audience very well, get familiar with them and understand the kind of content that appeals to them before you create your strategy.
Get a social media handle for your business
Like I said earlier, most small business owners don’t own specific social media handles for their business brands. They use their personal brand for both personal life and business promotions.
Of course this is not entirely wrong. But, sometimes it can create confusion.
Unless you’re promoting a personal brand, as part of an important social media etiquette for small business, you should get a distinct social media handle for your business brand.
This will help a lot in enhancing the distinctiveness of your brand. And also content published there will be seen as business related content.
Know when to post
If you make some research and observation around your audience demographics, you’ll have an idea on the time your audience are most likely to be available online.
If you make your post at these times, there’s a good chance more people will be able to see your posts. This will most likely increase your post reach and engagement.
On the other hand posting at the wrong time can cost you a lot in terms of views and reach.
Don’t get boring
One of the easiest way to to get less views, likes and comments on your posts is to keep posting the same kind of stuff repeatedly. And at the wrong time.
Because it’s social media, you have to try as much as possible, to make your posts social.
Just because it’s a business account doesn’t mean all you have to post there is a set of spammy looking link from your blog posts. No.
Doing that is one easy way to get on the social media users’ black book
So even when you’ll have write stuff about your business, you’ll have to get creative…
Write posts in different format that will appeal to your audience and get them posted there.
Interact with your users
A lot of small business owners think that ignoring user’s comments is a great way to create the impression of being too busy and overly important before your audience.
That’s completely wrong. I understand sometimes you could be very busy. But, your audience needs feedback from you every now and then.
And doing just that by interacting and replying to their comments and messages is a better way to be cool. And you could adjust your schedule to do this every once in a while.
Just imagine if Mark Zuckerberg would find time to respond to your comment on his post, how would you feel?
That’s how some members of your audience would actually feel.
Of course you can also use automated response messages etc but then, if someone finds time to comment or drop a message for you, responding personally would go a long way to give them this special impression about your brand.
Don’t get “TOO” promotional
Especially when in social media groups and forums, do not get too promotional.
The moment people realize you’re too promotional, they will ignore you.
Respect the fact that sometimes, instead of adverts, people would rather need a solution to something.
As a graphic designer in a group that talks about graphics designing, instead of making posts about how you have better graphic skills all the time, why not do a mini training on how graphic designers can get better jobs, do different kind of design or even improve on their skill?
Content like this will get better social love, shares etc compared to some links to your advert page.
Differentiate your Personal from Professional life
While sharing personal stuff on your social media every once in a while can bring out that human touch to your posts and make it more relatable…
Remember there’s a limit to the kind of personal stuff you should share on the social media handle for your small business.
Also understand there are certain kinds of small businesses that are more formal and therefore permit very little personal stuff in your social media accounts.
Don’t start sharing stories about your cats, where you’ll be partying or what food you ate on your business page unless it’s very necessary.
Otherwise it’s definitely going to look really unprofessional. And yes your target audience may not take you serious.
Share the social love
Don’t get so self centered. Because social media doesn’t revolve around you and your business.
Get other beneficial and informative content that will benefit your audience and share it with them.
From time to time, share other people’s posts, promote others and let your audience see you’re not some narcissistic fellow.
Be honest out there
It’s very easy to get embarrassed for dishonesty on social media than it is in real life.
Avoid posting misleading information as much as you can. Verify the sources of your information before posting them. It can affect your brand if people realize you misled them.
Also, try not to say one thing and do the opposite.
Of course we’re humans. And far from perfect. Whenever you make a mistake, admit it.
Be on brand as much as possible
It’s easy to be in the agricultural sector and start posting stuff about mechanics even when both niches are not really related. Don’t confuse your readers.
Get over the urge to post things outside your niche except it’s an analogy or the stuff is somehow related to your niche.
Understand what works best for each platform
Don’t just copy a single post and update across all your social media handles.
Most small business owners make this mistake.
What works for Facebook may not be exactly suitable for LinkedIn or Instagram so you may need some tweaking here and there before posting on the next platform.
So, to get a better result; study each platform and know what works best.
Don’t get reactive over comments
There will be times people will disagree with your opinion or whatever you’re posting.
When you don’t have everyone agree with your opinion you can just move on or explain yourself if necessary.
Understand, starting a social media spat may not be necessary sometimes as it may affect your brand negatively.
Be careful of the Controversy you create
Of course there are times controversial updates can get you followings and large exposure for your business.
But if you must get controversial with your social media posts, do that strategically.
It’s better to avoid getting dragged into some avoidable political debates that would ruin your brand or make you lose clients.
Be calculative in your social media posting strategies.
Here’s where I’ll conclude the 13 top social media etiquette for small business owners.
As you know, it’s not only important you have a social media account for your brand, as a small business owner out to drive more sales and engagement from the social media, you have to understand the social media etiquette for small business.
And that’s what you got right here.
Of course at Victor Winners, we help small business owners find their feet. So you can hit us up and we’ll be glad to be of help.