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Social Media 101: The Ultimate Guide for Setting Up Your Small Business for Success

social media isn't new; it isn't old either. It's rejuvenating, morphing and expanding everyday. there are hundreds of social media platforms nowadays and more being introduced as we speak. the one's we are most familiar with have updates or fixes just as we are wrapping our heads around their previous standing. there's more apps than technically possible to be stored on a single smart phone. there's more content, algorithms, and blogs to have you perplexed into infinity and a day.

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so how do you just "jump in" when you feel like your tipping your toe into a shark tank, and I don't mean ABC's Shark Tank. this is more intense, the stakes are high. Kevin O'Leary, Barbara Corcoran, Daymond John, Robert Herjavec, Mark Cuban, Kevin Harrington, and Jeff Foxworthy aren't the only ones your pitching to here. you've got your family, friends, customers, potential clients, colleagues, and partners to impress. there's another world out there on the internet of things. where the heck do you begin? how do you get it going? how do you do it "right?"

first, let's start off with this: there is no right way to do social media.

it's called SOCIAL media for a reason. It's a place to be social, content, share, and engage. you have to be uniquely you in order to gain traction and do social media "right" for your business. now let's assume your brand is lean, sleek, and strong. picture your business and brand embodied in a wearable suit. now slap on that identity and let's dive in.

(already on social media but you're not performing up to your social expectations? check out 3 tips to revamp your social media)


create a social brand

remember how I said we will assume that your brand is lean, sleek, and strong. good. now you have to convene a strategy as to how you will get your brand socializing. what will be your tone? who do you want your brand to be on social media? an influencer? trailblazer? informer? CRM point of contact? for awareness? the catch: if you want to answer where, what, who, and how, you have to first answer why. why do you want your brand to be social? the rest will be easy peasy.

implement social platforms and set goals

now that you've got a clear intention, you have to match those intentions with each social media platform's purpose. this will be a process of elimination. not every platform will be good for your business. each platform has it's own purpose. which platform's purpose best matches your intention in making your brand social?

pro tip: I always suggest starting small. while 4 platforms may suit your intention, set up one at a time. become familiar with the platform so you don't overwhelm yourself.

#goals. we all have them. but what goals should you follow for your social brand? well, why the heck are you on social media? go back to your intention. each will merit a different goal tracking metric. to get a feel on which metrics you should care about and what they mean, see this pretty sweet guide from Buffer.

now start socializing, liking, following, sharing, commenting, have fun!

analyze your success

at the end of a month's time, use your defined metrics to compare your numbers with your goals. are you on the mark? fall short? blew it out of the water? (YEAHHHH!) see how you performed. use this check list to pull your data from the below mentioned sources.