Getting Started with Social Media

“Technology and social media have brought power back to the people.” – Mark McKinnon


As with any marketing or promotional activity, the key place to start is with a plan.  You need to know how social media fits into your wider sales and marketing plan, and what you want to get from it.  You also need to know who you’re trying to target or network with and where they are (i.e. which social media platform they’re likely to be on).

And if you’re new to social media, it’s probably a good idea to pick one platform and start with that rather trying to do too much.

The key questions ask yourself when getting started with Social Media:

1. What do you want to get out of being on social media?

For example, do you want to increase brand awareness, increase traffic to your website, gain market intelligence, share information quickly and easily, promote a new product or service, generate more leads, encourage people to sign up for your newsletter?

2. How will that fit in with your current marketing activity?

Will social media complement and add to that?  For example, how will social media help facilitate your brand awareness, sales, advertising, PR, email marketing or web presence?

3. Who do you want to target?

Is it potential customers, is it influencers who may be able to review and promote your products or services, is it suppliers or distributors?

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4. Who are those people?

Can you create a profile for them? The more specific you can be, the more likely you are to be able to find them and target them effectively

5. And where are your competitors?

Are they using social media? Is it working for them? How are they doing it?

6. What information and content do you have that you can share?

Are you already generating content via a blog or email that you can use?

7. Who is going to create the content and manage your account?

How and when?

8. How do you want your company or brand represented?

Social media allows you to create a ‘personality’ for your business that people can connect and interact with – what do you want that to be?

9. How are you going to let people know that you’re on social media?

Again, this needs to be built into your current marketing activity and materials.

10. Do you have the capacity and skills to manage this yourself?

Do you need some extra help or training?

And then, when you’ve answered these, you can move on to the most important question: Which platform should I use?

As with all marketing activity, you should approach social media as part of a wider marketing strategy with the continuation of the same message and connecting all the various channels with the same voice.  Seek expert help to make your marketing work for you.

Straight talking thoughts on Getting Started with Social Media
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