I hear it from business owners all the time: “We don’t need to use social media; we’re busy enough.” While that’s a great problem to have, it’s not at all what social marketing is about. If you think being on social media is simply about getting sales, I hate to break it to you, but you’re doing it all wrong.

Think about why you use social media for personal use–to connect with friends and family. And why do you want that connection? You want to stay in touch, see pictures of the kids and grandkids, and keep up with changes in their lives. Businesses should be using social media in the same (sort of) ways.

Social marketing is NOT about sales. It’s about connecting with customers and potential customers. It’s about creating an online community with them. It’s about providing another channel of customer service. I’ll say it again–it’s NOT about sales.

Businesses should follow the 80/20 rule with social posting. No more than 20 percent of posts should be centered around sales and what the business does, including promos and product announcements. The other 80+ percent should be beneficial information for your followers. That can include tips from your industry, recipes, or even fun memes. You want your followers to want to visit your social pages. You don’t want them to feel bombarded by advertising.

Now, all this said, it’s NOT essential for a business to be on countless platforms. In fact, that’s probably a bad idea for most small businesses. Instead, pick two or three that are most valuable to your business, and focus your efforts on those.

Not sure which ones to choose or how often to post to them? Check out this post.

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