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Few things strike fear in the heart of a small business owner like the words “social media.” If you’ve avoided coming up with social media post ideas for business purposes and are horrified at the idea of diving into the world of organic social marketing, you may be missing out on a great small business marketing opportunity.
Over an estimated 3.5 billion people use social media—a lot of them could be potential customers, and online marketing for small businesses is an effective way to reach them. The world of social media can act as free promotion for your business, along with providing new ways to interact with your customer base. With nearly unlimited ways to interact, even a social media marketing maven may find themselves at a loss for social media post ideas for small businesses.
There are a few ways to brainstorm social media post ideas for business purposes without driving yourself insane. Better yet, your creative efforts can even save you time when you’ve got too much on your plate to think about your next Instagram post. In this guide, we’ll go over the anatomy of a good social media post, and look at seven types of social media post ideas for business that will make your attempts at social media marketing a breeze.
Coming up with social media post ideas for business accounts can be a challenging process, particularly if done well. Ideas should feel timely, be germane to your business, and speak to your customers in a way that is both interesting and engaging. Most challenging of all, while social media can be a place to advertise online, your posts can’t seem like traditional, manufactured ads.
Despite the variety of content out there, good social media posts ideas for small businesses have a few things in common. They’re:
You want people (customers and prospective customers, ideally) to interact with your content. The best way to do that is to include some kind of call to action within your post.
In the short-term users might like your post, comment on it, or share it with a friend. But long-term, these interactions pay off, since they might lead to some kind of action in real life—be it a trip to your brick-and-mortar location, a phone call for more information, or a visit to your website. Calls to action increase signups for websites and newsletters, so they may work for your social media, too.
If you want people to read your posts, this means coming up with a unique voice that matches your business’s brand and—most importantly—resonates with your customers. This may sound hard, but think of your best social media post ideas as another way for customers to do some window shopping.
You can even use modern photos in your small business marketing to help craft a stand-out internet presence.
To get the most out of your social media strategy, you’ll want to make sure you’re posting on a regular basis. This doesn’t mean you need to post several times a day (or even more than once or twice a week). Rather, you simply have to have a reliable schedule of posts in order to stay consistent.
Try to run tests to see when users are most likely to engage with your posts. For example, some research indicates that the best time to post on Facebook is between 10 a.m. and 3 p.m. on Thursdays or Fridays. Once you’ve found your sweet spot, stick to it.
If you’re running a business, chances are you have a story to tell. Social media is the perfect place to tell it—in a professional and appealing way, of course. Share an interesting narrative about your business, find a unique way to tell it, and tell it often—like IBM does with their throwback photos on Instagram. This will create more of a bond with your customers and encourage them to be personally invested in your business.
Finding your niche on the most popular social media sites for small businesses is a smart way to increase your customer base and brand awareness.
Sure, there’s plenty more to consider when coming up with social media post ideas for businesses, but you’ll be putting yourself in a great starting place by following these main considerations.
Once you have the right parameters for your social posts in mind, you can get down to the fun, creative work of getting your social posts together and loading them into your account. Good social media post ideas for business can run a wide gamut, from some basic ideas (like a photo of new merchandise) to the more complex (such as infographics or contests).
You don’t have to start with complicated ideas first; nor do you need to keep things simple if you have a creative idea you just can’t shake. The best social media post ideas for business won’t leave you feeling crunched for time, but will make you proud of your presence. You should always be open to customizing these social media post ideas to better match your business.
One of the biggest draws for followers of a business account is notifications about business promotions, like sales and special offers.
People are always happy to learn about discounts and events. Social media gives small business owners an unparalleled public avenue for promoting these kinds of opportunities. Plus, if you offer exclusive perks to your social followers (like a discount code), you can build brand loyalty in the process.
People are inclined to tag or share these posts with friends who may also be interested, which expands your reach for not just the sale, but also for your social media channels in general. The more people share your posts, the more likely you are to grow your social media presence without having to put too much effort into an entire social media strategy or pouring precious dollars into something like Instagram advertising.
As seasons turn over, most small business social media accounts will take advantage of the opportunity to post about the upcoming changes in weather and other highlights.
Say, for example, that you run a clothing store: You can promote your fall clothing once the weather gets cooler. If you run a pool company, as another example, you can begin to promote your business once spring gives way to summer—getting your name out there before customers even think of calling to get their pools ready for the warmer days ahead.
Seasonal social media post ideas for business don’t always require a ton of forethought, either. Season-related posts can be as simple as a brief message ushering in the new time of year, or can be more complex depending on your industry and ambitions.
The real focus here is on the easy win that seasonal milestones provide for social content. With this social media idea, you can come up with something interesting to say, quickly gain your customers’ attention, and can use a common subject on peoples’ minds to serve as inspiration for your post.
If social media has taught us anything, it’s that people love to see themselves in the spotlight. This doesn’t just apply to our own timelines, either. Customers are often more than happy to provide businesses they love with photos of them, their friends, and their pets using a brand’s products or featuring their logo. In social media parlance, this is known as user-generated content, or UGC for short.
UGC social media post ideas provide several perks for small business owners. First, they drum up brand interest. Most businesses will ask their followers to post a photo on their personal social media accounts and tag them. This gets people to promote a company with their friends and followers—all while functioning as an organic endorsement of that business.
Second, UGC helps you come up with interesting content without having to do a ton of legwork. This can help you spend less time worrying about what to post, and more time getting your social posts up and running.
Last—and certainly not least—UGC social media post ideas for businesses also reward your most loyal and engaged customers. By acknowledging their interest in your business, you help create lifelong customers with only a bit of digital praise.
Using social media to drum up business and promote your wares is definitely a core component of your overall social efforts. People don’t always want to be bombarded with posts about what you offer, however.
Posts that spotlight the people who power your business are often impactful as well, and help show off a more human side of your business—making this one of the best ideas for social media posts for business if you’re feeling tapped out.
These posts are fairly easy to put together. If you have a handful of employees—particularly those with an interesting story to tell—you can run a series of posts that spotlights the folks who make your business what it is. This is particularly helpful if your employees are public-facing and interact with your customers often.
By delving into their stories, you can also show customers that your business is about more than just dollars and cents. That honesty and transparency goes a long way on social, too.
People love business giveaways and contests, particularly on social media where the barrier to entry is low and the potential payoff is high enough to entice them to enter.
Business owners love social media contests because they’re relatively easy to run, are inexpensive to produce, and can help build a social media following without pouring big bucks into advertising. Plus, when executed correctly, this is one of the social media post ideas for business that can broaden a company’s brand recognition online without much heavy lifting on the business’s part.
Running an effective social media contest or giveaway comes down to observing a few best practices. First, you’ll want to make sure you’re abiding by any state and local laws regarding contest entries and rules. These still apply if you’re running a contest on social media, just as they would if you ran a similar event in-store or through conventional advertising channels.
You’ll also want to set up some rules for entry that benefit your business. Be sure to have your contestants take a photo of your product or logo, and to tag your business in their post. If you want to use a branded hashtag as well, it can’t hurt to do so—especially as you can filter your inbound messages through that hashtag to keep track of who’s entered.
Plugging your own product is effective, sure, but it’s often more effective to let your customers do the talking. More than ever, people are writing reviews and relying on them to help with purchasing decisions. Over one-half of social media users rely on social media to research a business’s products. Picking out particularly good bits of customer feedback can help you put your best foot forward—all while letting other people advocate on your behalf.
By posting positive reviews or excerpts from customer testimonials, you can put yourself in the driver’s seat with regard to business feedback. When it comes to Yelp for business owners, you won’t have to rely as much on them to gather positive reviews of your business when you can highlight the feedback you find particularly illuminating on your own social channels.
Promoting positive reviews can encourage fans of your business to leave reviews of their own as well, which helps create a virtuous cycle for your company’s online presence. This is one of the social media post ideas for business that can have long-term rewards.
Nowadays, customers want to know how products are made, rather than just purchasing them and calling it a day.
That provides business owners with a chance to create compelling social media posts that show off their processes, workmanship, and other elements of their business that make them unique. This is particularly true if you own a company that does something interesting or intricate, such as iron working or baking elaborate cakes.
For social media post ideas like these, you can create content in a variety of ways. For starters, you can shadow an employee through her or his day, showing off what a typical shift looks like and what it entails. You can also run a content series that goes into the details of how certain items are made, with each post covering a specific product or service. People love to see how things are made, and social media gives you an excellent way to provide them with a glimpse into your operations.
These seven ideas for social media posts for business are only the beginning. The great (and perhaps scary) thing about social media is just how much trial-and-error play a factor in figuring out what works for you.
Some businesses do best by keeping things simple—posting about sales, telling people about closures, and answering customer questions. Others do better by being funny or by pushing the envelope with unique and quirky content. The more you experiment, the better you’ll be able to see what works for your brand and its voice.
Plus, if you get confident enough to dive into social media analytics and data, you’ll have empirical proof of what resonates with your audience. With that in tow, you can make sure your social feed works for your business, rather than being a time-sucking nuisance on your to-do list.