Social media is a great way to create brand awareness for your small business and drive growth. But it follows a completely different rule set to other, more traditional marketing channels. Simply promoting your products and services won’t do. In order to succeed, you need to find a way to use the people behind your small business and add personality to your social media marketing.
Just think about it: Do you enjoy following a company that is constantly churning out posts that seem to have been written by bots? Of course not. You want to feel like you’re following human beings, no matter how large the business is.
So in order to be successful on Facebook, Twitter & Co, you have to be sociable and add personality to your content. And here are my favourite ways to be more authentic on social media – and gain trust and loyalty from your followers in the process.
1. Post team photos & selfies
The most obvious and effective way to add personality to your content is to show your face. Help people get to know who’s behind the business by posting photos of your team or yourself.
For example, snap a photo of yourself at an event, rather than just putting up a generic photo of the venue. If your team are working on a particular project, post a photo of them working together.
You can also take a photo at the networking event you’re attending. Or you can grab a selfie when meeting another small business owner for coffee and tag them in it. Show your followers that there are real people behind your small business, not robots!
Read more about what to post on social media to grow your small business.
2. Include non-business related posts
Another easy way to be more personable is to include non-business related posts. If you’re constantly posting about your products or services, your followers will quickly get bored.
To add personality, it’s good to post a mixture of business and non-business content to keep things interesting. For example, you could share an article you’ve enjoyed reading. Or you can post a photo of your favourite local coffee shop or even a few snaps of your latest holiday.
Obviously, you’ll still want to keep things professional (so it’s best to avoid photos of you in a bar at 3 am!). But sharing little bits of your team’s daily life is a great way to give your small business a face on social media.
3. Do your own thing
Just because other people are posting a certain type of content, it doesn’t mean you have to as well. Don’t copy what other businesses are doing just for the sake of it. Stick with your own brand personality and stand out from the crowd.
For example, to add personality to your content you don’t have to post a #MotivationMonday or #ThrowbackThursday post every week. These might work once in a while, but repeating them regularly can seem boring and it might not even be relevant to your business.
Instead, think about the content you like to see on social media. Whatever inspires you (and whatever you think your followers will connect with) is a great place to start.
4. Be honest
Your social media doesn’t have to be perfect, and you don’t have to pretend your small business is perfect either. We’re all human (even, or possibly especially, on social media!).
So there’s no harm in asking questions, admitting mistakes or posting about how you’ve learned from failures. Quite the opposite, I’m sure it’ll gain your more trust and loyalty from your followers if you do so.
This is also a great way to connect with other small business owners on social media. Create a support network where you can ask questions and learn how to make your business better. Offer your knowledge too, and your followers will appreciate your honesty and your expert tips.
5. Sound like a human
To avoid your social media profiles becoming too “business-y”, stop using an overly professional or business-like tone of voice. Get rid of any business jargon and speak in the casual tone of voice you would use when speaking to your friends.
This will make you seem much more approachable and will remind people that there’s a real person behind the social media handles.
The best way to be a human on social media is just to be yourself. Don’t overthink things too much – just talk (or write) how you would normally.
6. Behind the scenes posts
Another easy way to give your small business’s social media more personality is to include behind the scenes posts. Show a corner of your workspace or desk to show people what your office is like.
Or share sneak peeks of plans for new products or what your team is working on right now. You could even post what you had for breakfast as you answered this morning’s emails!
Posts like these are a great way to balance the social and the business side of your social media marketing. And it’s a great way to remind them of your products and services without becoming too pushy, salesy or boring.
To read more about this topic, have a look at these:
Why You Should Focus on Your Social Media Engagement
3 Steps to Raise Your Brand Awareness With Social Media Marketing
Small Business Brand: What Is It, Why Do I Need One & How Do I Get One?
What to Post on Social Media