When marketing your small business online and across various social media channels, and managing a personal account or two, it is very easy to spend a lot of your time and energy on these highly entertaining media platforms. And so it is no surprise that we may need to take a break from time-to-time, to step back from daily posts and stories. But how will that impact your business’ social media progress?
Maybe you paused your regular posting schedule to take an extended vacation. Maybe you just needed space from the social media world. Whatever your reasoning for taking a break from managing your social media channels, when you stop engaging with your followers online it can be difficult to start up again. Don’t worry, there are ways to get the ball rolling again and possibly even more successfully.
What happens when we stop being active on social media?
The effects of pausing your social media engagement are largely determined by how long you plan to be away. Taking a couple days off has much less impact on your marketing performance than a couple weeks or a month. Some of the key things that can happen if you decided to “put a pin” in your social media presence are:
- Your content will fall lower on your followers feed
- You may lose some of the followers you have
- The reliable relationship you have been developing with your audience is no longer reliable.
But wait! This is not the end of the world. Taking time away from the online social sphere is becoming almost a necessity for our personal well-being. So here are some tools for mitigating the effects when you choose to return to your business profiles.
1. Have a strategy
Your time away is a great opportunity to look at what was and what wasn’t working for your social media channels. As you return you have an opportunity to tweak your strategy going forward.
Make a plan before you start back up with posting and sharing content. Update your hashtag master list and take a fresh look at your competition and community. Discover what they are doing now, what they are looking at, and who they are following. Bring this new perspective to your Social Media Strategy. Lay out a content calendar for your next few weeks to help direct your efforts to where they will be most valuable.
2. Be consistent
As you reestablish your social media activity, be consistent. Post regularly. It doesn’t need to be multiple times a day, it doesn’t even need to be every day. Whatever is your achievable posting schedule, set it and keep to it.
Start small. Don’t bombard your followers with 10 posts or stories your first day back. It’s like throwing seeds down in an arid garden. You need to take your time and nourish the soil, get your followers to start to engage with your content again, one post at a time.
3. Spotlight your strengths
Focus your content on what you do best. If you are a micro-entrepreneur and your brand is built around you, then put yourself out there. Take video and photos of your face. Share ideas that are authentically aligned to you and your services.
If your business is built around your staff, your services or certain products then highlight them. Use this opportunity to remind your followers what your brand is all about, what you do, and why you rock!
4. Connect with your clients
Make your first steps back directly with your loyal clients or students. Start with those you know well and reach out to them. Let them know you are back online. Just like a long time friendship, if one of you goes silent for a time, it’s important to personally reach out to those longtime friends again if you want to rekindle their connection.
Remind current clients of your social media profiles in the next email newsletter. Make it a point to highlight your business profiles in your next email to clients or students. Even if you don’t have a regular newsletter (yet), when connecting with people over email, add a mention about the different profiles they can find your business on.
Try offering a discount or product draw for current clients who are following or start following you on social media. This can be as simple as a discount on their next services or more exciting like a gift of a product or a full free service. Set it up in a way that makes sense for your business and also that is enticing for clients or students. Make sure it is something they would find of value. Then spread the word and follow up with each client who is active on your accounts. Comment, share and like what they have to say. This is a great way to get the conversation rolling again.
Taking these steps first will help to build back from a solid foundation of loyal followers.
5. Audience participation
When you see someone post about their great night-in, eating tasty Chinese food thanks to Uber Eats or Doordash, and they tagged the company, that is a form of UGC: User Generated Content. This is any content created by your online audience that highlights your business and services. Igniting your followers to share their experience with your business and services will not only increase your engagement but will start to spread your reach further.
Ask clients to share their experience of your services and tag your business profile when they post. Run a social media contest to encourage followers to share their experience with your brand and tag your profile in exchange for being entered into a draw.
UGC is a great way to get a wide reaching online conversation started about your business. Be sincere and listen to what your followers have to say. Remember that social media is a two way street. Respond to what is shared and keep the discussion going.
Though consistency is key to brand building online, sometimes we all need to step back and take a break from the online world. Just be sure, when you decide to step back into the wonderful world of social media, you do so with a plan. Remember who your loyal clients are and start building engagement back up from those who have been with you through the years.
This may be a great opportunity to examine how social media is integrated into your business’ larger digital marketing plan, or to bring someone on board to help manage the workload. A temporary respite from regular posting can be a good thing, giving you a fresh take and new energy to inject into your online community. Your business social media profiles may be the better for it.
If you are looking for more ideas for or support with your social media marketing, book a Discovery Call today. We can help you get your services to more people who need what you have to offer.