By Alison Flangel

In the age of modern technology, the use of social media is essential for small business owners. Social media reaches consumers far and wide, which helps to expand the success of your company on a massive scale. The world of social media can be overwhelming, as there are so many different platforms that currently exist. Below are some tips on how to navigate the topfour most important sites for your business.

One of the first social media platforms to become big, Facebook attracts around 2.6 billion active users daily. Posting to Facebook once to twice a day can boost one’s business exponentially.

  • Creating a Facebook page that showcases your business; posting links to your website or blog can draw people into your vision
  • Using discussion boards within a Facebook page can engage users with one another, which helps to create community around your business
  • Facebook has features which can reward consumers with special offers or exclusive deals on your page. In other words, posting promotions on your Facebook page can encourage viewers to get involved in your business

Twitter, which has approximately 192 million daily active users, is one of the easiest social media sites to directly engage with consumers. Twitter is quick, easy to use, and adds a personal touch to one’s business model.

  • While using twitter it is important to maximize engagement. This involves creating an account with a relevant name, following other associated businesses, and engaging with other businesses
  • Posting consistently is the most effective way to grow your presence on twitter. Posting tweets that offer advice and helpful links is a good way to start developing strong engagement
  • Replying to consumers encourages maximum involvement. Remember to reply to followers who comment on your page, retweet your posts, or send you a direct message

Instagram is one of the largest growing social media platforms, with around 1 billion active users. Instagram is one of the most visual platforms that exist, which increases engagement between businesses and consumers.

  • To begin, one should create a public account to promote your small business, signing up with a business profile rather than a regular public account. Along with this comes creating a good bio, which is the first thing users see when they view your account. Your bio should be precise and straightforward, including a link to your website
  • It is important to use hashtags on your posts! Hashtags are essentially virtually connectors that allow users to view posts that all fall under a given category. If you are a small business owner of a bakery, posting a picture of your product with the hashtag

“#freshpastery” allows users to view your picture with thousands of other bakery items
across Instagram

  • Don’t skim on the content – the more someone posts on Instagram, the more relevant their account becomes. Consistently taking professional and aesthetic photos will help to build up your presence

Known as the world’s most professional social media network to this day, LinkedIn is a technological powerhouse. Small businesses can utilize LinkedIn to connect with others in various industries to advance their career and business goals.

  • Optimizing your profile on LinkedIn is the most important way to grab others attention. This includes: uploading a professional image of yourself, writing a bio that defines your company in a concise manner, and adding links to other social media platforms such as twitter
  • Posting regular status updates to your profile is important to let consumers know what your business has accomplished. Informing your audience and refreshing your status frequently is the best way to do so
  • Joining Connected LinkedIn Groups helps to build interaction with other users within a specified network. For example, if your company builds floral arrangements, you can join a network of all the florist in your area. Posting and responding to questions is a great way to interact within these groups, which helps you to be recognized as a trusted professional