In today’s hyper-connected, technological world, having a social media presence is pretty much a must for small businesses. In fact, a recent survey found that 76 percent of small companies use social media…and since you’re reading this article, chances are that you are one of them!
But while you’re creating your business Facebook page, setting up boards on Pinterest and sending out those tweets, do you ever wonder if you’re doing it simply because you ‘have’ to do it, not because it’s a smart marketing method that is boosting your profits? The truth is that although so many small businesses are on social media, the vast majority are not seeing results from their efforts. They are just going through the motions because it has become some sort of 21st-century business obligation.
All of that changes for you today, smart hustler! Earlier in April I visited the ICON17 conference and spoke with Lony and Tracie Rollings of Socially Posted, a virtual assistant company that manages social media pages for small business owners. Through testing (“playing in the sandbox” as they refer to it) they have solidified the formula for turning social media efforts into sales, and they shared it with me in an informative interview. Dive right in by clicking Play on the video above.
Using the 80/20 Rule
When I asked Lony about best practices in social media that every small business owner should know, he immediately mentioned the 80/20 rule. This is the idea that on social media, 80 percent of the time you should be sharing things that will educate your audience – free, informative content. Only 20 percent of the time should you be sharing things about your company or selling directly. And although it seems illogical, this skewed method can actually help you grow big.
Tracie tested the theory herself when she created the company Bible Journaling Ministries in October 2016. She set up a Facebook group in January 2017, and by April, when we spoke at ICON, the community had ballooned to over 4,000 members. In fact, four months have gone by since that interview, and the group is now up to over 10,000 members!
Tracie’s formula for success boils down to three simple steps:
- Give content
- Build trust
- Drive sales
Although it is tempting to want to start at step 3, this really only works if you follow the steps in that exact order. By being so thorough, consistent, and genuine with steps 1 and 2, Tracie can now throw out an occasional post about a product and the members of the group are eager to make the purchase.
You can learn more about this by watching the video above. Also, since this kind of strategic social media effort takes a lot of time and dedication, Lony and Tracie share tips on how to know when it is time to hire someone and how to pick the right company.