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When I talk to small business owners about their social media presence (or more often, their lack thereof), I often am told they don’t need to be on social because they’re already busy enough. They simply don’t need more customers. While that’s a fantastic problem to have, it certainly isn’t a reason to not be on social media. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t suggest they go out and sign up for five different platforms. I do, however, suggest they have an active presence on at least one.

Why? Social media is all about connecting with our customers and creating an online community. Consumers look to a business’s social media sites for tips, promotions, and news. They use them (more than ever!) to communicate with that business – to ask questions and get product info.

A successful small business strategy on social media should absolutely follow the 80/20 rule: 80 percent of content posted should be for the consumer – tips, community and business happenings, and news. Just 20 percent should be about sales. So if you’re doing it right, having social presence isn’t about getting new customers (though that can come too, of course). It’s about engaging with your current customers (and their friends) and growing your online community.

If your small business isn’t active on social media, now is the time! Note that I said active. Simply having a Facebook page or Twitter account isn’t enough. It has to be used properly and timely. Just remember – it isn’t all about sales.

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