Small Business Matters

Short Articles About Big Issues for Small Business

Leveraging the Power of Meta's Threads App for Small Business Success

July 2023 - Marianne J. Beane, EME CEO, Founder, and Lead Consultant

In today's digital era, your business has an incredible opportunity to enhance your brand presence, increase brand awareness, position yourself as thought leaders, and connect with new potential customers through a variety of mediums. Meta's new Threads app may be the powerful platform you’re seeking to help you achieve these goals and drive growth. 

Threads is so New! Why Should I Join Now?

Joining Threads now as a small business is your chance to gain early access to a growing user base, establish brand authority, leverage organic reach, and access new features. By taking advantage of these opportunities, you can position your business for long-term success on the platform, establish a strong presence, and build a loyal community of followers. Waiting may mean missing out on the initial momentum and potential benefits that early adoption can bring.

Becoming an early adopter of Threads provides a unique opportunity for your small business to gain several advantages and stand out in the crowd.  As an early adopter, you have the advantage of being one of the first in their industry or niche to establish a strong presence on Threads. This means you can capture the attention of users who are eager to discover new content and accounts, increasing the likelihood of being followed and engaged with by a growing user base.

Additionally, since Threads is a relatively new app, the competition may be less intense compared to more established social media platforms. This means that you have the opportunity to stand out more easily and have their content seen by a broader audience. By being among the early adopters, you can leverage this advantage to gain a larger share of the audience's attention and potentially attract new customers. As the user base of Threads continues to grow, being an early adopter increases the chances of being featured in curated sections, recommended accounts, or suggested content. This exposure can significantly boost brand awareness and attract new followers, creating opportunities for business growth.

Joining Threads early on also enables you to connect with other early adopters and build a strong network within the Threads community. This opens up opportunities for collaboration, cross-promotion, and knowledge-sharing among like-minded entrepreneurs. By establishing relationships with other early adopters, you can form valuable partnerships and expand their reach through shared audiences. As Threads continues to grow, influencers and content creators may start to emerge on the platform. By being an early adopter, you can identify and collaborate with up-and-coming influencers who align with their brand values. Partnering with these influencers in the early stages can be cost-effective and provide authentic brand endorsements that resonate with the Threads audience.

If you want to be part of making the social media world a better place, being an early adopter also gives you the unique opportunity to familiarize yourself with the app's features, test different strategies, and provide valuable feedback to the platform's development team. By actively engaging with Threads and providing insights, you can help shape the direction of the app's future updates and potentially influence the development of features that align with your specific business needs.

But My Business is Already on Other Social Media! Why Should I Try Something New? 

It’s no secret that the social media landscape is ever-evolving, with new platforms and trends, like Threads, emerging regularly. You don’t have to be on EVERY social media platform, but having a presence on multiple platforms means you can stay informed about evolving trends, adapt your marketing strategy accordingly, stay relevant, and maintain a competitive edge.

Your appearance on multiple social media platforms will maximize your online presence and effectively reach a wider audience, thus expanding your potential customer base and increasing your brand visibility. Different social media platforms have unique user demographics and characteristics, so it is important to KNOW your target audience to help you determine which social media platforms are best for you to focus your efforts on. 

Why is this important? It’s simple, actually. Not all your potential customers use the same social media platforms or engage with content in the same way. Some users may prefer visual content on Instagram, while others may prefer news updates on Twitter or professional networking on LinkedIn. Knowing your customers and connecting with them on the social media platforms they engage with the most, through the channels that appeal the most to them, allows you to cater to the preferences of different segments of your target market. 

Relying solely on one social media platform poses risks if the platform undergoes changes, experiences technical issues, or loses popularity. Being active on multiple platforms mitigates the risk of overdependence on a single platform and ensures that a business's online presence remains intact regardless of platform-specific challenges.

How Should My Business Use Threads?

Like any other social media platform, how you use Threads depends on your business goals and customers.  You can use it to develop your brand, promote brand awareness, establish thought leadership, reach a wider audience, or create a platform for customer reviews, feedback, and customer service.

Brand Presence: By creating engaging content and leveraging the app's features, you can craft a compelling brand presence. Regularly sharing updates, stories, and visuals that align with your brand values will help create a distinct and memorable impression among users. 

Promoting Brand Awareness: Threads provides a highly visual and interactive platform for small businesses to promote brand awareness. For example, you can share behind-the-scenes content, product highlights, tutorials, and customer testimonials. These visually captivating elements can captivate users and generate interest in the brand, increasing visibility and reach.

Thought Leadership and Industry Expertise: Use Threads to position your business as a Thought Leader in your industry by sharing valuable insights, tips, and industry trends through posts, articles, and video content. This strategy not only builds credibility but also helps foster trust and loyalty among potential customers.

Thoughtful Content Creation: Threads encourages long-form content, enabling you to share more in-depth insights, stories, and educational content. Unlike platforms with character limits, Threads enables you to provide comprehensive information, share industry knowledge, and establish yourself as an expert in your field. This allows for deeper engagement and the opportunity to capture the attention of users seeking valuable and meaningful content. And speaking of engagement…

Engaging with the Threads Community: One of the greatest advantages of the Threads app is its vibrant and engaged community. Actively participate in discussions, comment on relevant threads, and join groups to connect with like-minded individuals. By engaging authentically with the Threads community, you’ll build meaningful relationships, gain valuable feedback, and expand your network.

What Should My Business’s Presence on Threads Look Like?

I mentioned earlier that your potential customers use various social media platforms for different reasons and engage in different ways. This means that your business's activity on Threads should be differ from its activity on other social media platforms and cater to the content and interactions your customers are seeking. Your Threads presence should complement your other social media profiles while taking advantage of the unique features and audience of the Threads app. 

Threads is a highly visual platform, placing a strong emphasis on images and videos. You can leverage this aspect by sharing visually appealing content that highlights your products, services, or brand story. This visual-centric approach allows you to showcase your offerings in a more engaging and captivating way.

Consider using Threads to provide exclusive offers, sneak peeks, and behind-the-scenes content to your audience. By sharing exclusive content or limited-time promotions on Threads, you can create a sense of exclusivity and reward your loyal followers. This differentiates your presence on Threads from other platforms and encourages your customers to engage with your business there for exclusive benefits.

Being an early adopter of Threads provides your small business with a unique opportunity to gain a competitive edge, increase visibility, build a strong community, and explore partnerships while also developing your brand, promoting brand awareness, establishing thought leadership, and reaching new potential customers. 

Now GO!  

Embrace this new frontier, and watch as your small business thrives in the digital realm.

Social Media Marketing Strategy: What it is and why Your Business Needs one 

In the US, about 70% of small businesses have a social media presence...93% of these businesses admit they're struggling with social media and 62% report their paid advertising efforts on social media are "wasted".

Why is this happening?  The answer is actually pretty simple: poor planning or failure to plan. Although small businesses invest an average of 6 hours a week on social media, only 50% have a Social Media Marketing Strategy!

What It Is

A Social Media Marketing Strategy is a detailed plan that defines your goals and Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) and outlines how your business or organization will use social media to achieve them. It involves defining target audiences, selecting appropriate social media channels, creating engaging content, and implementing tactics (and setting a budget) to promote the business, products, and/or services.

Why Your Business Needs One

You wouldn't go on a thousand-mile road trip without knowing where you were going and how you were going to get there, right?  Of course not! You'd probably use a tool like Google Maps, Apple Maps, or a GPS to help plan the route, the stops along the way, and determine your budget for the journey.  

Marketing your business on social media without a Social Media Marketing Strategy is like going on a road trip by driving aimlessly in a vague direction. If you're lucky, you might get to a desirable destination...but chances are you're going to spend a lot more time, effort, energy, money, and fuel to get there than if you'd had a well-planned route!

Think of your Social Media Marketing Strategy like your Social Media Marketing GPS: It details where you're starting, where you want to go, how you're going to get there, how far the journey is, what milestones you'll encounter along the way, how long it will take you to get there, and how much you'll spend throughout the trip. 

Key Components of a Social Media Marketing Strategy

If you want to make the most of the time and money you invest into social media marketing, your business NEEDS to have a written Social Media Marketing Strategy! It is an essential plan to help your business build brand awareness, engage with customers, drive website traffic, generate leads, stay competitive, gather insights, and establish authority. By leveraging the power of social media, you can effectively reach and connect with your target audience, ultimately contributing to the growth and success of your business. Your strategy should be aligned with your overall marketing objectives and integrated into your broader marketing efforts. It should evolve as your business grows and as social media platforms and consumer behaviors change.

Four Reasons Your Business Needs Social Media

Social media has become an integral part of our lives! With the apparent rise of social media influencers partnering with businesses to promote products or services, it is easy to think that you need to pay an influencer to successfully grow your business and drive online sales. The truth is, you can grow your business and your influence on your own. 

With the right strategies in place, social media can help you reach a wide audience, attract new customers, build relationships with your existing customers, share knowledge about your industry, and stay up-to-date on industry trends. By understanding how your current and potential customers use social media and what content resonates with them, you can create a successful online presence and build relationships with potential customers.

Let’s explore four reasons why your business should be on social media and how it can benefit you.

1 - Reach a Wider Audience

First, social media gives you the opportunity to reach a wide audience. Simply put, social media is an effective and low-cost tool that can help you reach more potential customers. Potential customers are out there and they want to hear from you (they just don't know it yet). It's a great way to get your message out there without having to spend a lot of time or money and you can target your message to specific demographics and tailor your content to the interests of your target audience. With the right strategy, social media can be an invaluable tool for reaching a wider audience in a cost-effective way.

2 - Reach & Engage New Customers

Secondly, social media is an invaluable tool for businesses to reach out to potential customers who may not have heard about you yet. It can help you attract new customers by showcasing your products and services in an engaging way. Use your social media to create engaging, targeted campaigns that draw in potential customers who are interested in what you have to offer. By connecting with target markets, you can make sure that you’re reaching out to the right people and giving them the opportunity to learn more about your product or service. Then, engage with them and keep them engaged with your brand. With the right strategies in place, your business can use social media to reach potential customers who need your product or service but don't know it yet.

3 - Build Relationships & Provide Excellent Customer Service

Third, social media enables you to build relationships with your existing customers by connecting with them directly and responding to their comments or questions quickly. You will hear and see their wants, needs and fears directly; respond promptly, making sure you understand their question or concern before you respond (if you don’t, ask questions to make sure you do). This helps create trust and fosters a relationship that could lead to more sales down the line. Relationship building involves establishing credibility and authenticity with your customers, partners, and other stakeholders.

Relationships are built on trust and mutual respect. To achieve this, it is important to be genuine in all your social media interactions. Some of the most loyal customers are those who have had a problem with a product or service and received a prompt response and excellent resolution from the business. Showing empathy and understanding their needs, particularly when a problem arises, will go a long way in strengthening these relationships. Additionally, providing value to your customers will help them see you as a reliable brand who they can count on for support when needed.

4 - Share Information and Become a Thought Leader

Fourth, social media is an effective tool to share information and impart knowledge to your audience, establishing yourself as a Thought Leader. Becoming a Thought Leader is a powerful tool to grow your social media sphere of influence. It’s a way to share knowledge, gain recognition, and build credibility in your niche. 

Thought leaders have the ability to influence decisions and shape the opinions of those around them. Yes. I said it!  Thought Leaders are Influencers. What they know and what they think draws people in.  They possess an in-depth understanding of their subject matter and share their insights with others. By sharing knowledge and becoming a thought leader you become an influencer, which can help drive traffic to your content and website, and eventually your sales funnel, all while positioning yourself as an expert in your niche. 

With the right approach and dedication, anyone can become a thought leader in their industry.  Read an interesting article? Share it! Have a compelling perspective on an industry trend? Blog it! Post about it!  Have a little know-how in a topic your audience is interested in? Live-stream it (then post the recording)! Have some in-depth expertise in your niche? Offer a workshop or speak at an event!

Establishing yourself as a Thought Leader in your niche means that you become known as the expert you are (and you ARE an expert, I promise you).  People will come to you to learn - and perhaps end up a customer in the process.

The Big Picture

Social media is an essential tool for you to reach a wider audience, engage new customers, build relationships, and share information. It can also help you become a thought leader in their industry.

By leveraging the power of social media, your small business can create meaningful interactions with existing and potential customers. You can also gain insights into what your target audience wants and needs. With the right strategy in place, your business’s social media can be a powerful tool grow your sphere of influence, establish brand credibility, and scale your business.