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Social Media Marketing Tips for Entrepreneurs

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Social media marketing can be stressful for anyone, but can be especially stressful for entrepreneurs. Did you know that business owners may have just as many or more followers than their business’s social media accounts? The pressure to succeed in personal social media marketing can be overwhelming, but creating a system in which you manage your own personal social media marketing alongside your business’s social media marketing can help you stay organized and reach your professional goals. Consider the following social media tips to be successful in your personal social media marketing efforts.

1. Audit Your Personal Social Media Accounts
Your personal online presence is important, especially if you are the face of your company and you form relationships with potential customers and contacts on behalf of your company. Start by auditing your personal social media accounts. Google your name alongside your company name. Search for yourself online and see what comes up. Consider where you have your personal social media profiles right now – Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram and others. Check your privacy settings for each account. It’s okay to have some profiles set to private, if you want to only connect with friends and family, but other profiles should be public and represent you and your company. Ask yourself the following questions: 1.) are my profiles up to date with my most recent job title and my company website, 2.) am I posting content that speaks to my interests along with my business aspirations, 3.) am I creating a strong network by connecting with others in my industry on a weekly basis? If the answer to any of these questions is no or maybe, now you know where to start.

2. Create Short Term SMART Goals For Your Content So You Aren’t Overwhelmed
Social media eats content for breakfast. Short term SMART goals help you maintain efficiency and confidence when creating social media content. SMART stands for specific, measurable, achievable, realistic, and time-bound. After you complete your personal social media audit, create at least three short term (1-2 months in time) SMART goals for your social media marketing presence. For example, one of your SMART goals could be: “By the end of the month, I will create one post on LinkedIn by writing a 300 word article about my specific experience attending a recent industry conference by using the LinkedIn Editor.” We can break it down into even smaller steps than that. For instance, if you are concerned about your ability to create this type of content, you could amend your SMART goal to “By the end of the month, I will read 10 LinkedIn posts from people in my network and analyze the strengths and weaknesses of those posts so that I can write my own post during the following month.” Take small steps in order to build your creative confidence and stick to a plan to share your content regularly. Commit to new SMART goals throughout the year to maintain your efforts.

3. Plan Your Personal Social Media Marketing Ahead of Time
If you want to use social media marketing to gain more contacts for potential sales or partnerships, then you need a plan for how will use your platforms throughout the year. You’ve already started by auditing your personal social media and creating short term SMART goals for your content. Now, it’s time to take care of the long term. Start by creating a year long calendar of opportunities for you to post content and connect with others. For instance, what industry conferences will you attend in the upcoming year? Write them on your calendar and set alerts in your phone to post content before, during, and after the conference. This content might be in the form of sharing a post from the conference organizers, taking a picture at the conference, and then writing an article about what you learned for your followers. Once you have a content calendar, and alerts on your phone that remind you when it’s time to post, it will be easier to stick to your schedule and successfully manage your personal social media marketing.

Social media marketing continues to rapidly change, but it also connects us further and farther than we could imagine. By auditing your personal social media presence, creating SMART goals for your content, and planning your content ahead of time along with setting alerts to remind you to post, you will soon expand your network and continue to find success in managing your personal social media marketing as an entrepreneur.

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About the Author:

Susan Chesley Fant is a Clinical Professor of Marketing at the University of Alabama and the Associate Director of the Masters of Marketing program. She specializes in digital and social media marketing, innovation, leadership, and entrepreneurship. You can connect with Susan on LinkedIn, Twitter (@susanchesley), Instagram (@susanchesley), or through her website at www.susanfant.com.