Some of Australia’s brightest entrepreneurs have spilled their secrets to SmartCompany to help small business owners conquer social media, as the world marked Social Media Day on June 30.
Boost Juice founder and Shark Tank investor Janine Allis says the secret to building a great social media presence boils down to a thorough understanding of each platform and the people it attracts.
Allis’ personal Twitter account has nearly 50,000 followers and Boost Juice has more than 600,000 followers across Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn.
More than 80% of Boost Juice’s following is on Facebook.
“Facebook, is for businesses, and plus 35s,” Allis told SmartCompany.
“Instagram is great for businesses that are visual, like interior designers.
“Twitter is for people. People follow people [on Twitter], not businesses as much.”
Showpo founder Jane Lu says her obsession with social media helps her ensure they continue to build a strong online presence.
“It’s something that you can’t delegate, I’m Showpo’s social media manager,” Lu told SmartCompany.
Showpo’s combined following across Instagram, Facebook, YouTube, Instagram and LinkedIn is nearing 2 million.
A majority of Showpo’s following live on Instagram, a platform Lu tackles with pre-scheduled weekly photo shoots to show new or upcoming products, and more than 10 posts a day.
“I have other team members to execute for me, but I never delegate out the strategy and analysis of it,” says Lu.
Lu’s approach to discover social media hacks is by experimenting with content and learning how each platform’s algorithm works.
“You can never fully understand it but you can try! And that’s all through spending a lot of time on it.”
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Entrepreneur Taryn Williams is on her second business TheRight.Fit, following the successful establishment of agency Wink Models. Both businesses have a combined online following of more than 40,000.
Her best advice is to post regularly but always stay on brand and share content that is interesting and relevant to your audience.
“Be active, but not overbearing,” Williams told SmartCompany.
Frank Body co-founder Jess Hatzis and her team review their content every few weeks.
To build their social media following to more than 800,000, Hatzis says they combined a great product with a user-generated content strategy.
The secret to attracting and engaging followers
To sustain a strong social media presence, it’s important to remember what value you’re giving your followers every time you share something.
“In your communication be relevant and interesting,” says Allis.
“Respect your followers and do not bombard them with ‘stuff’ – less is more.”
Allis also recommends following other people similar to you and don’t forget those hashtags.
“Other media is your best bet,” she says.
“When doing a PR campaign make sure you mention your tags.”
Lu adds that working with influencers is a great way to boost numbers.
Collaborating has also helped Williams with their campaigns.
“We’ve run some fantastic collaborations and competitions with other brands which we finds works well,” she says.
“It adds value to both of our audiences, and exposes them to great content, new learnings and they get to know more about both us and the brands we collaborate with.”
Hatzis says Frank Body likes including its audience in the content to increase engagement.
“We repost their images, engage in conversation and let them know that we’re actually listening to what they say,” Hatzis told SmartCompany.
“It’s not so much a secret as it is a unique tone of voice, good content and a strong sense of community.”
Always be authentic
Last year, Williams and her team launched a “#backyourself” campaign, with content including a video and photo stills, to encourage healthy body image and empower people to be their own cheerleaders.
“We got over 5,000 posts and shares, and had many people reach out to say what a positive impact we had made on them personally,” she says.
With campaigns like these and any social media post, Williams stresses the importance of authenticity.
“Your followers can tell if something is contrived or forced,” she says.
“They want to really hear your story, so make sure what you share is honest, genuine and relatable.”
Use fun campaigns to boost your following
Boost Juice is currently running a “What’s your name game” campaign that invites people to register their name on a grid for a $1 off their next purchase and the chance to win a free Boost Juice beverage.
Not only is it a fun way for consumers to interact with the brand, but it’s a smart way to connect with them via email or Facebook which helps increase the company’s online following and email database.
“[It’s] Incredibly interactive, engaging and funny,” says Allis.
Similarly, Frank Body comes up with fun and quirky content to spread awareness and education about their product to a wider audience.
“We include strong call to actions back to our website,” says Hatzis.