4:1 – Social media made easy for small businesses
I have worked hard for the last couple of years to figure out how to make content creation easier. Part of this has been a mission to come up with techniques and strategies that truly fulfil the “social media made easy” promise.
I hate it when I see small businesses, sole traders and solopreneurs who are doing well with the businesses – delivering great services and products – but are beating themselves up over their abilities (or results) on social media. They are overwhelmed by it. And ultimately, they are disappointed by it.
In this blog, I wanted to offer you a technique that I believe will make posting regularly on social media easier. I also wanted to reframe social media for you. So let’s start there…
Social media for small businesses…
It’s not that important…!
There I said it! Yes you want to have a social media presence. Yes you probably can reach different people and audiences via social media. But for sooooooo many businesses it is not the only, let alone the main, way to do your digital marketing and to make sales. You need to work out if it really is the main form of marketing for you.
If it really isn’t, then I want to reframe your view of social media.
To figure out its important, ask yourself:
- How many direct sales do you get from social media?
- How many direct sales do you get from other forms of marketing and connections?
- From the time and effort you put in to posting, are you getting the return?
- Do you put out quality content or ‘eek I need to post something’ content?
It’s really important to evaluate your social media content creation in relation to the effort it takes you and the cost and/or sales you get from it. It may not quite be A=B but it needs to be relative.
For most small businesses I work with, social media is a way of remaining visible and for giving potential clients ‘something to look at’…something to verify you are who you say you are…and somewhere to add your contact details/be contacted.
In contrast, consider the other marketing opportunities you have – your website, your mailing list, your networking, your word of mouth/advocates …how much time and effort do you put in to those? How much return do you get? …if it’s quite good, imagine if you put the effort you spent on constantly creating new social media posts (as well as the mental effort from beating yourself up about it), in to other forms of marketing and content creation?
Time to reframe how you see social media for your business
I suggest that we start looking at social media as your notice board.
Imagine someone visits your profile, the posts they see should be a collection of ‘advertisements’ about who you are, what you do and what you offer. They will only scroll so far, so you don’t need loads…just enough to nudge the algorithm and get you in the newsfeed, plus be recent, on topic and of interest should someone visit your profile.
Importantly, your biographies or summaries should be the best version of this too.
If you are simply ‘advertising’, then there is no reason why a lot of your content on social media can be things you have already created and have to hand. How many of your social media post could be just things you repurpose or reuse?
All post (as long a they are not tied to a specific date) can also be posted more than once – 2-6 times a year, in fact. Even Christmas, Easter, Summer, etc content can be reused.
When was the last time you scrolled through someone else’s content more than a month or so after they posted it. And, if you saw a repeat of something in your newsfeed, do you get offended?
Using a 4:1 strategy – make social media easier with reusable content
This is why I recommend to my small business clients and to my Content Clubbers, that the majority …that is around 80% of your social media posts are things you have done before or content you have created for another purpose.
How best to prove it to you? Here’s an example of 5 different posts. One for each day of the working week, if you like. Or two posts for one week and three for the next! Of the 5, just one is ‘brand new’, the rest are reusable or repurposed from other evergreen content.
Post 1 – This is your single new post.
Share something about you and what you have been up to recently (this could be easily decided upon based on an event you are attending or about what you have been up to in your business, or personally, if you are happy to share) Give your followers a little insight in to ‘you’ .
Post 2 – Createa sales post
This is simply a post advertising a service or product. If you have created one of these before, use the same caption…even the whole post. Edit if there has been changes to the detail. Create a new image if you need to. But save it. Repost it in a couple of months. If you have no text or past examples, copy and paste the service/product description from your website, if you have one. Add a call to action. Depending on the platform you could link direct to the services or product page of your website and let the ‘preview’ be your ‘image’.
Post 3 – Create a tips post (or better still a series of tips post and schedule them in)
If you have ever done a video or reel or blog or social media post where you shared something educational then you have ready made content for a tips post. If you once wrote a “5 tips for x” in an email or blog, for example,…you have 5 social media captions ready and waiting.
Post 4 – Create an entertainment post
When you see something entertaining or funny save it and then schedule it in to share. The caption could just be an emoji or you can add your own thoughts. Facebook, Instagram, Twitter all allow ‘reshares’ …still…make use of it.
Post 5 – Create a Contact me post
So many small businesses forget to invite interaction. Share your contact details, Calendly link, the contact page of the website, your phone number, your address (if you have a physical business location). People are lazy – if they want to contact you they want to find this information instantly and with ease. Regularly recycle these types of posts – they have a strong CTA too – you are reaching out and inviting people to get in touch.
That’s just 5 quick examples…I have loads more …reshare old blogs posts, remind people about your mailing list, share testimonials (again and again!), do throwback posts (so many photo apps have memories, what were you up to this time last year)….I can go on…!
Get organised and make social media easy
The easiest way to recycle, reuse and repurpose content is to get organised.
Create a spreadsheet.
Have a column or tab for each ‘pillar’ or purpose, i.e. sales, education, information, etc. Copy and paste relevant captions (and go back through your social media feeds and copy and paste captions from the past too). As an extra tip have a collections of hashtags you can just copy and paste too.
If you use Canva, make use of their folders.
Create folder for each purpose. When you use an image use the comment function next to it (the speech bubble with a +) and copy and paste the caption in to it, so the words and picture are stored together
Group content together by theme.
You can use a spreadsheet, Word doc, computer folders, Canva, a content planner, or even notes by hand) of all of the content you have around this theme. Then, if you have a month on ‘websites’, you can easily find all of the blogs, emails, and social media you have. Taking the example above you then match the content to each purpose, i.e. a blog about website writing, a sales post with website copywriting services description, a testimonial about website work you’ve done.
Record what you are doing.
Even if you can’t get off the content treadmill of creating new stuff all of the time for social media (or if you are very new small business), start recording what you are doing now. Save imagery and captions in a way that works for you and will make it easier to reuse and repurpose ANYTHING you have taken the time to create.
Sounds good, right? …but, do you still need a little help?
I appreciate that you may not think this sounds that simple. However, it does work.
If you need more support to make your social media easier, then come and join The Content Club. Reducing overwhelm when it comes to digital marketing is a big part of what I am trying to do. Let’s make it simple.
The online membership is all about finding ways to make all content creation and digital marketing more effective and more enjoyable. And when you enjoy it, it definitely starts to feel easier. And when it feels easier, it become more effective, because it is authentic and consistent.
Join today for £23 per month.