15 Ideas for Connecting With Customers On Social Media in 2022

What is one way a Small Business can effectively connect with consumers through social media?

To help your Small and Medium Business (Small Business) brand connect effectively with customers on social media, we asked social media managers, content marketing professionals, and small business owners this question for their best insights. There are several ways to post user-generated content to go live on Instagram weekly. Small businesses can meaningfully engage with users and customers on social media to form new connections and deepen existing ones.

Here are 15 ways these Small Business leaders connect their brands with customers on social media:

  1. Locate and Post user-generated Content
  2. Determine Your Target Audience
  3. Announce Contest Winners on Your Social Media
  4. Use Instagram Stories
  5. Add a Human Touch by Posting Video Content on Instagram
  6. Host Educational Webinars
  7. Leverage the Founder’s Personal Brand
  8. Show Behind-the-Scenes Videos
  9. Create Interactive Posts
  10. Conduct Online Polls and Surveys on Social Media
  11. Follow a Social Media Calendar for Consistency
  12. Resolve Your Business and Brand Issues Through Social Media
  13. Make Use of Meta-Ads
  14. Use Brand Ambassadors to Promote on Social Media
  15. Go Live on Instagram Weekly

Post User-Generated Content

Social media friends are constantly buying things and telling us about them. A user-generated content (UGC) is anything a person creates, whether a photo or a lengthy review. Depending on your business, the person may be a customer or a random individual who has encountered you only once or twice. Social media posts, video reviews, and podcasts are examples of user-generated content.

Marco Genaro Palma, Genaro Palma

A User-Generated Content (Ugc) Is Anything A Person Creates, Whether A Photo Or A Lengthy Review.

Determine Your Target Audience

Before jumping on the social media bandwagon, small businesses should determine their target audience. Identifying your target audience will help them come up with catchy content that can spark the interest of potential customers. Small companies with interactive content which customers can answer or share usually get more positive feedback and build excellent relationships.

Michelle Siy, Oliver Wicks

Announce Contest Winners on Your Social Media

One of our favorite methods to engage with customers is to announce they are winners of our monthly contest on social media. Customers always get excited when they win our competition, and displaying that joy and excitement on an open social media platform helps advertise our services. Additionally, this is a great way to demonstrate our services in a public setting, where visitors can see how happy the winners are and attempt to join them by entering our monthly contest.

Jeff Neal, CritterFam

Use Instagram Stories

Instagram stories are great for brands to connect with customers on social media. You can use an Instagram poll. It only takes a moment for Instagram users to click a poll answer. Then, they get to see how others answered the poll. Instagram polls and other stories are great ways to boost customer engagement.

Janice Wald, Mostly Blogging

Add a Human Touch by Posting Video Content on Instagram

Some studies have revealed how Instagram users feel more connected to brands they follow on Instagram and that they prefer to buy from those brands rather than from competitors. This data reflects the importance of implementing a social media strategy to connect with customers and why Small businesses should put effort into this. One idea could be to create behind-the-scenes videos. This theme adds a human touch to your marketing strategy, showing your brand is made of people. This will undoubtedly create a deeper connection since people want to connect with people and not just brands.

Natalia Brzezinska, PhotoAiD

Host Educational Webinars

Educational webinars are an excellent way for Small Business brands to connect with customers on social media. By hosting webinars on topics related to your industry, you can establish yourself as a thought leader and build trust with potential and current customers. Additionally, webinars offer a great opportunity to showcase your products or services in a real-world setting and answer any questions attendees may have.

Michal Jonca, PhotoAiD

Leverage the Founder’s Personal Brand

Small businesses are beginning to understand the power of leveraging their founder’s brand. People are much more likely to trust, let alone buy something out of good faith, from another person than a faceless brand. Small businesses must have intentional owners that are not afraid of using their platform to spread the message to their network and, by extension, increase the likelihood of building a stronger brand for their small business.

Isaac Mashman, Mashman Ventures

Show Behind-the-Scenes Videos

I find that one of the best ways that a small business can get noticed online is to show behind-the-scenes videos of the work that they do. This helps consumers to understand the value of buying the product/service but also can help to demystify what you do or what your company does. We also know that most social media algorithms respond positively to video, so using this and other types of video will help the business gain more general exposure than static posts.

Jennifer Drago, Peak to Profit, LLC

Jennifer Drago, Peak To Profit, Llc Small Business Marketing

Create Interactive Posts

You connect with your customers better when you don’t focus only on posting product-related information but also on giving out interactive posts such as quizzes, a quick feedback form, or even a giveaway. Ensure you find out ways to make your customers interact with your brand’s social media. You can ask for their opinion, create a challenge or giveaway, and be fast in responding to complaints. The more you do this, the more your customer realizes that you care about their opinions and feedback.

Simon Bacher, Simya Solutions

Conduct Online Polls and Surveys on Social Media

I would advise Small businesses to conduct surveys & polls to connect with their customers on social media. These two tools can help small businesses understand their target audience’s needs and want. My team has experimented with polls & surveys on Twitter and LinkedIn, and the response that they receive is phenomenal. Polls and surveys are good conversation starters for connecting with the target audience. With polls, Small businesses should avoid bringing up a critical issue. Keep it light to get an idea about the customer’s preference and opinion regarding the brand. 

Surveys can also help them understand if there are necessary changes to their existing or new products. They also help in knowing what products to add following in the line and features to include. Customer surveys & polls can improve a business’s product and service quality. It helps Small businesses cater to what the customer wants. Moreover, a customer who feels like contributing to product development is likely to stay loyal to the brand.

Sandeep Kashyap, ProofHub

Follow a Social Media Calendar for Consistency

When interacting with customers on social media channels, consistency is crucial. Therefore, by adhering to a social media calendar, small businesses can communicate with an increasing number of clients. Regardless of your platform, the post needs to be well thought out and updated frequently. For instance, content can be categorized as educational, entertaining, or marketing and posted at the appropriate time.

Karen Cate Agustin, Investors Club

Resolve Your Business and Brand Issues Through Social Media

One of the best ways Small Business brands can use social media to connect with their customers is by shining a silver lining on bad news. For instance, if some of your services are down, tweet or send a message across your social media platforms with a cute or funny GIF to brighten things up. Many customers know that things won’t always work perfectly and appreciate it when you are proactively transparent when something goes wrong.

Jon Torres, Jon Torres

Make Use of Meta-Ads

As a social space with billions of users, social media platforms are beautiful places to capture the interests of potential customers and keep connected with them. Recently the company that owns social platforms such as Facebook and WhatsApp rebranded to meta. With the rebranding came excellent additions such as the Meta Ad tools. Small and Medium businesses can capitalize on these tools to advertise on social media.

yongming Song, Imgkits- Photo Editor

Use Brand Ambassadors to Promote on Social Media

A Small Business brand can effectively connect with customers on social media through brand ambassadors. Brand ambassadors are passionate about your brand and willing to share their excitement with others to recruit new customers. They will be able to provide a personal connection that is difficult to find in other marketing types, making them an essential part of any social media strategy. In addition to directly connecting with customers, brand ambassadors can help you create content they can share on their social media platforms. This will allow you to reach new audiences without having to devote as much time or money to developing the content yourself or even paying for advertising space on these platforms.

Amer Hasovic, Love & Lavender

Go Live on Instagram Weekly

One creative way you can connect with your audience as a small business is to go live on Instagram. Whether partnering up with another brand or doing a solo appearance, a “live” can get your followers’ attention. This can get more traction if you make it weekly and just show up for a casual chat, a Q&A, or a short tutorial. The goal is to show up and be available live so people can send you messages in real-time. There’s no better way to connect than that. 

Yanna Berman, Urban Mamaz


12 Reasons Why Content Marketing is Crucial for SMBs

Why is content marketing crucial for small businesses?

To help you appreciate the importance of content marketing for small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs), we asked content marketing professionals and business owners this question for their best insights. From offering longer life to your marketing to helping you develop expert status in your niche, there are several reasons why SMBs need to fully exploit content marketing to their best advantage in achieving their marketing goals.

Here are 12 reasons these leaders provide for why content marketing is crucial for SMBs:

  1. Content Marketing Offers Longer Life to Your Marketing 
  2. Market Your Uniqueness Through High-Quality Content
  3. Reach Massive Audiences at an Affordable Cost
  4. Engage With Current and Potential Customers
  5. Build Your Brand by Specifically Targeting Your Audience
  6. It’s the Most Efficient Way Small Businesses Can Compete
  7. Show Your Expertise and Personal Side With Content Marketing
  8. It Helps You Grow Links to Your Website
  9. Improve your Ad Results With Engaging and Unique Content 
  10. Create a Personalized Way to Captivate Audiences Across Multiple Platforms
  11. High-Quality SEO Optimized Content Helps You Rank Up in Searches
  12. It Helps You Develop Expert Status in Your Niche

Content Marketing Offers Longer Life to Your Marketing

Content marketing has a longer life than many other forms of marketing. When you create content for your website – whether a blog post, a video, or a long-form piece like a white paper or ebook – you are investing now in something that can continue to have an impact in the future. When you create evergreen content, you are answering a question or solving a problem that customers will keep having. The piece of content you create can show up in front of customers searching for answers and solutions years from now.

Jennifer Klemmetson, Klemmetson Consulting

Market Your Uniqueness Through High-Quality Content

We focus on SEO, website support, and website design and we feel content marketing is crucial because Google (and frankly other media like social media) value content – high quality and unique content. It’s important not just to do content marketing but to strategize with content marketing. The reason it’s so important is that at the heart of SEO is search. While it’s often attributed to search engines and rightfully so, I believe search is psychology revolving around how people search to find you. It’s an exercise and often at the end of that search is some piece of content. So, think about content as being more like sticky paper to communicate and increase your visibility around ideal clients.

Gresham Harkless Jr., Blue 16 Media

12 Reasons Why Content Marketing Is Crucial For Smbs

Reach Massive Audiences at an Affordable Cost

You can’t ignore the benefits of content marketing for small businesses. First, content marketing is affordable. By seamlessly weaving into your content that help will be more effective when readers buy your products or pay for your services, marketing is affordable and effective. Pay for an accurate SEO keyword tool and optimize your content with the keyword so your SEO efforts generate eyeballs on your content. After publication, you can take the content that has the link to purchase and promote it on social media. In this way, you get yours without needing an advertising budget. If you do decide to pay for ads, make sure you advertise where your target audience hangs out online.

Janice Wald, Mostly Blogging

Engage With Current and Potential Customers

Content marketing is crucial for small businesses because it is a way to reach out to potential customers and provide them with information about your products or services. By creating informative and engaging content, you can attract new customers and build a loyal following. Additionally, content marketing can help you to establish yourself as an expert in your industry, which can make customers more likely to do business with you.

Matthew Ramirez, Paraphrase Tool

Build Your Brand by Specifically Targeting Your Audience

Find and reach your ideal audience. Simply, content marketing is valuable and relevant content targeted at a specific audience in a way that engages and builds familiarity. For example, it can be everything from a podcast or book to online video content designed to promote your brand. Some of our most effective videos showcase our behind-the-scenes, which attracts both clients and potential employees who want to see how we do what we do. Content marketing done right builds your brand.

Michael Ayjian, 7 Wonders

It’s the Most Efficient Way Small Businesses Can Compete

When you run a marketing department in a small company, you usually don’t get a huge budget to spend. That’s why, sooner or later, you come to the topic of organic traffic and start to pay attention to good quality content. However, it is tough to compete with large companies, which spend hundreds of dollars on SEO positioning, paid guest posts, paid ads, social media campaigns, etc.

A well-designed content marketing campaign can help you stand out from the sea of bland, non-descriptive posts or graphics. If your idea is unique and an article compelling, people will get hooked on it. When you read a good text or watch a creative video, you don’t think about how many keywords or long tail phrases it contains. It is a pleasure, and you enjoy and savor that moment because the content is engaging and keeps you on tenterhooks. The power of engrossing content is undeniable – and it is the best and most efficient way a small business can compete with larger rivals.

Anna Starkey, Prodio

Show Your Expertise and Personal Side With Content Marketing 

Content marketing allows small businesses to truly position themselves as the expert in their field while also showing the personal side of their business. By sharing content regularly, they can display their knowledge thereby building trust, providing value to grow loyalty, and connecting with their audience by sharing authentic content. These small touches, when done well, can set them apart from big box businesses. People want to know that you care about what you do and ultimately care about them as a customer. Simon Sinek summed it up well when he said “People don’t buy what you do; they buy why you do it…” 

Content marketing allows small businesses to showcase not just what they do, but the passion behind why they do it. Audiences love that!

Beth Gillem, Dogwood Media Solutions

It Helps You Grow Links to Your Website

Content marketing is the vehicle that supports your SEO efforts, and inbound links are important in SEO. So when you create, publish, and promote useful content on your website, people are more likely to link to it from other websites. These inbound links create authority for your website, improving the chances it will show up in search results. Without content, you will have fewer opportunities for links, and SEO is much harder to do.

Lisa Banks, SaaSpirin

12 Reasons Why Content Marketing Is Crucial For Smbs

Improve your Ad Results With Engaging and Unique Content

As a digital marketing agency owner for the past 10 years with over $31 million of paid ads managed, I know how to take small businesses to big companies. Initially, entrepreneurs are forced to wear a lot of hats, and unfortunately, most waste a lot of money on services that don’t grow their company. We see this time and time again how companies spend so much time and money on the design of their website with cool functions but it is not user-friendly or more importantly, search engine friendly.

It is crucial to get a solid foundation of unique content not only on your home page but on all the inner pages of your site. After all of your pages have engaging content, images, and call to actions, then you can create a blog. We always recommend creating a blog on your website instead of solely on other sites like Medium.com for SEO purposes. Writing content that people choose to share will not only help grow your organic rankings but will also help improve advertising results.

Jeremy Katz, Advertising For Surgeons

Create a Personalized Way to Captivate Audiences Across Multiple Platforms

Many companies come up with new ideas on how to choose the best way to promote their businesses. The goal of Content marketing is to increase engagement on digital and social channels and to educate the audience. For instance, well-made promo videos usually get more exposure, provide a more personalized way to captivate the audience, growing popularity across different platforms, and improve the understanding of a product or a service as a sales tool that is visible on social feeds. Video content platforms are one of the most effective advertising tools that help businesses just make a profit.

Daria Globchak, Elai.io

High-Quality SEO Optimized Content Helps You Rank Up in Searches

You need to make the best out of SEO strategies with organic content. To rank web pages on SERPs, Google and Bing employ a variety of algorithms (search engine result pages). Quality content is one of the aspects that contribute to a company’s ranking in SERPs. Google, for example, scans your website thoroughly to identify the types of user searches that should be directed to your page. You won’t locate your website in the search results unless your material is high-quality and concise.

Lionel Mora, Neoplants

It Helps You Develop Expert Status in Your Niche

The obvious answer to why content marketing is crucial is for the SEO aspect. But what most small business owners don’t realize is that when you publish top-level content, I’m talking about your best stuff, it paints you as an expert in your niche. People want to work with experts because they want to know they are in good hands. The more great content you put out, the higher your status goes, which also helps your search rankings.

Adam White, SquidVision.com

7 Must-Haves For a Website in 2022

To help you build a better website for your company, we asked web developers and business leaders this question for their best insights. From SSL certificates to clear and well-directed content, there are several things your company’s website must have to be successful and sustainable in 2022.

7 must-haves for a small business website:

  1. SSL Certificate
  2. About Me/Us Page
  3. Blogs
  4. Chatbot
  5. Mobile-Optimized Interface
  6. Data-Centered Architecture
  7. Clear and Well-Directed Content

SSL Certificate

SSL certificates are a common standard when it comes to website security. Without one, it’s unlikely that your audience will spend more than a few seconds on your website, let alone engage with it. A website with an SSL certificate not only has a better ranking on search engines but it safeguards the personal information that you collect from your visitors like their credit card information, address, and so on.

Riley Beam, Douglas R. Beam, P.A.

About Me/Us Page

Every company website needs an About Me/Us page. As a blogger, I’ve noticed that many interested readers click through to my About Me page when they’re browsing my blog. People want to know the person behind the content and this page will help to turn new readers into loyal followers and customers.

Angie Makljenovic, She Can Blog

Blogs

In 2022, companies must have blogs on their websites. Blogs are a must. First, your competition will have a business blog so a blog keeps you cutting edge. Next, a blog shows your expertise in your industry. Consumers want to buy from knowledgeable entrepreneurs in an industry. Finally, you became an authority in your industry. People can cite you and link to you boosting your visibility on the Search Engine Results Pages. All of this leads to more sales.

Janice Wald, Mostly Blogging

Chatbot

Today, having a chatbot is becoming an absolute must for businesses if they want to succeed in their growth. A chatbot can do a lot. It’s a powerful tool to engage website visitors, improve lead generation, answer FAQs, and much more. Additionally, chatbots are available 24/7 answering real-time requests, can speak multiple languages and often don’t require any coding skills to install. It’s a great investment that will definitely pay off in the long run. Customer experience starts right when a person opens the website, so it’s a great idea to have a tireless assistant on the watch out for any issues they might encounter.

Maryia Fokina, Tidio

Mobile-Optimized Interface

Making a website mobile-friendly just isn’t enough anymore. Today, more than 50% of web traffic comes from mobile devices. This is why it’s imperative to maintain a mobile-optimized website. Instead of simply shrinking and stacking website elements, take the time to design an entirely different layout that’s catered to mobile visitors. Make sure that each element of your website translates over to your mobile layout so that users don’t feel like it is lacking. A mobile-optimized interface offers a smoother and simplified experience for your visitors, and that can lead to increased dwell time and conversions.

Eric Ang, One Search Pro

Data-Centered Architecture

I think every website should properly analyze the market, conduct advanced keyword analysis and create a structure/internal links based on the outcome of the research. Not providing answers to the queries that people are looking for is the number 1 mistake I see when reviewing different websites. Create a nice-looking mega menu with the links to the important product/services pages, resources, and information about your company alongside clear pricing of what you are offering.

Matej Kukucka, Marketing Player

Clear and Well-Directed Content

One of the main things a company website must have is a clear purpose that is easy for someone who is unfamiliar with your products and services to understand. Consumers should be able to know what you do and what you need them to do after looking at your website. A website with a clear purpose and a good layout will set your company apart from competitors in 2022.

Landon West, Focus Insite

Terkel *creates community-driven content featuring expert insights.

10 Tips for Creating an Effective Content Strategy

How to Create an Effective Content Strategy for Your Local Business

To help you create an effective content strategy for your local business, we asked marketing professionals and business leaders this question for their best insights. From applying local SEO to understanding your target audience, there are several ideas that may help your local business develop effective content strategies to increase its market share.

Here are 10 tips for creating an effective content strategy for your local business:

  1. Apply Local SEO
  2. Anchor Keywords To City Search Volumes
  3. Promise Rewards With Actionable Content
  4. Relate Content To Local Community
  5. Follow a Content Calendar
  6. Target Your Audience Through Identified Channels
  7. Collaborate on Content With Local Businesses
  8. Use Community Influencers for Reach and Impact
  9. Define and Sell Your Uniqueness
  10. Understand Your Target Audience

1. Apply Local SEO

Before creating a content strategy, it’s important to understand what local SEO is and how it differs from traditional SEO. Local SEO is the process of optimizing your online content so that you can be found more easily by people who are searching for products or services in your locality. It’s a form of search engine optimization (SEO) that specifically targets local searches. There are several things that you can do to optimize your content for local SEO, but one of the most important is to make sure that your website and all your online content include your city, state, or region. This will help when potential customers in your area are looking for businesses like yours.

Natalia Brzezinska, PhotoAiD

One way to create a content strategy for a local business is to use the home city as an anchor for keyword analysis. Using tools like Google Trends, you can see what kinds of online searches folks in the area conduct most often, and then narrow that scope to focus on customers that fall within your niche. For example, if you are promoting an area restaurant and notice that “festivals in CITY” is a popular search term in the summertime, then you can plan a blog post that draws traffic to the site.

Michael Alexis, TeamBuilding

3. Promise Rewards With Actionable Content

In preparing localized content, speaking the language of the audience is an advantage as well as a challenge. But when you make your content actionable, you give your content the unique and universal advantage of gaining maximum attention and response. From early bird rewards to special hours, put to work every strategy your brand allows. You can also leverage the advantage of knowing how the local community will react to each rewards system and concentrate on the ones that offer the most traction.

Richa Nathani, Dialed Labs

4. Relate Content To Local Community

Think of the needs of those in the particular community where your business is located, and incorporate those needs into your content. For example, if you own a clothing store in a city with a lot of cold weather, you could focus mainly on warm clothing such as coats and hats in your marketing, even if you also sell other kinds of clothing. Make your content relatable to those who live in a certain local community so that they will feel more connected to your business.

Nick Shackelford, Structured Agency

5. Follow a Content Calendar

One step to creating an effective content strategy for a local business is to come up with a content calendar. This will help you map out what content you will create and when you will publish it. By keeping to such a calendar, you will be able to better measure the performance of your content and make necessary adjustments along the way.

Matthew Ramirez, Paraphrase

6. Target Your Audience Through Identified Channels

Creating an effective content strategy for local businesses can be a challenge, especially when competing with larger companies. One content strategy to increase local market share is using alternative channels of communication. In the growing age of digital media, everyone consumes content and purchases differently. It is important to understand where your target audience consumes media as well as where competitors are dominating the space.

Reaching target audiences and allowing them to easily purchase your product is vital to the growth of local businesses. Social media, email marketing, and business websites are great places to start. Once you figure out where your content is being consumed you will get a better sense of where to pursue your online presence on channels that bring the most exposure. This will ensure you can communicate with the right audience at the right time. Expanding channels will also ensure customers can shop with ease.

Jeffrey Pitrak, Transient Specialists

7. Collaborate on Content With Local Businesses

If you want to get noticed in your community, then work with other local businesses to create shared content. This could be in the form of blog posts on one another’s websites, where you link back. It could be through similar collaborations on social media. Or, it could mean partnering on a local contest or event that the community will find valuable and creating press releases and other content to promote it. When you work with others, you share your pools of customers, influence, and traffic, you can amplify each other’s business more than by doing everything on your own.

Dennis Consorte, Snackable Solutions

8. Use Community Influencers for Reach and Impact

Identify the influencers in your community and reach out to those who match your brand’s identity. From here, it’s all about using the existing reach of these influencers to promote your content. You can ask them to vlog reviews, write guest blogs and exchange links, and feature specific content built around their personas. They can also participate in giveaways on your platforms or host them on their channels, helping you gather more content to promote.

Mary Jurgensen, Gary and Mary West PACE

9. Define and Sell Your Uniqueness

When you’re creating a content strategy for your local business, it’s easy to get overwhelmed. Where do you start? How do you make sure that you’re creating content that will resonate with your reach? It’s more simple than you think! You start by focusing on what makes you unique. What are the aspects of your business that set it apart from any other store or restaurant or service in the area? Find those things and help them shine.

One of the best ways to showcase those unique aspects of your business is through video content. Video is one of the most shareable types of content today, so it’s a great place to focus some of your efforts. Video also helps show off the culture and atmosphere of your company and lets people see what sets you apart without having to visit in person.

Nick Cotter, newfoundr

10. Understand Your Target Audience

Creating an effective content strategy is essential for your business. Start by identifying your target audience. Reference your business plan, as you’ve likely already completed this step. Research your audience by listening across social media channels. For example, if you own a local boutique jewelry business, find + follow a few industry influencers on IG and Twitter.

Research and follow the top industry hashtags, and also look for the “sweet spot” hashtags with 1K to 100K posts on IG and use them correctly to help the algorithm recognize your brand. Create a list of topics and consistently publish content that attracts people to your brand. Be sure to include user-generated content (UGC) in 50% of your content. Build relationships where you mutually benefit from cross-promoting your topics and be sure to recognize your own brand influencers regularly. Use a scheduling tool to help you post consistently, and you’re on the right track to a winning local content strategy.

Natalie Figueroa, Peerlogic