Female entrepreneurs can take charge with social media
If you want your business to thrive in today’s world, it’s essential that you establish and cultivate an online presence — and social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram are ideal platforms for doing so. In fact, social media is the most popular marketing tactic used by small-business owners today.
What’s more, social media is a big favorite among women-owned small businesses, in particular. According to Facebook research, 81percent of women-owned small businesses say that social media is helpful to their business and rate it higher than their male counterparts do. Female entrepreneurs are also more active on social media — commenting, posting and sharing within forums, such as Facebook Groups.
Let’s look at how women are using social media to promote their brands, speak to new audiences, engage with each other, and put faces and personalities to their companies and offerings.
Putting a Human Face to the Brand
More than a logo, a brand is about the people behind the business — the feeling a company evokes and the customer experience. Companies don’t do business with entities or target markets; they do business with people. This is where social media excels. It allows female business owners to engage with prospects and customers and develop relationships based on their brands.
Twitter is particularly useful for building your personal brand as an entrepreneur and for growing your network. LinkedIn, on the other hand, is great for B2B businesses looking to inform customers about their products and services.
For local businesses such as restaurants, hair salons, clothing stores, fitness centers, spas, real estate and more, Facebook is king. Facebook’s News Feed and pages offer plenty of avenues to put a face to your business through photographs and videos (which have more than 135 percent organic reach than the average photo). You can also use Facebook Ads to reach new audiences.
Telling Their Stories
Storytelling is also an important part of the branding experience, and here, platforms like Instagram really shine. Instagram Stories, for example, is used by 500 million users each day, and 2 million advertisers buy Stories ads across Facebook properties (Facebook owns Instagram).
Unlike regular Instagram feeds, Stories are a collection of short videos and images that only stay visible for 24 hours. Despite this short shelf life, Stories boast a high engagement — 20 percent of posts receive a direct message — and are great for brand building and lead generation.
Instagram Stories are easy to create and are a great way to share company updates, such as new products, new team members and more. You can also use polls to get to know your audience and encourage them to learn about your business.
To promote your brand and get your face in front of new audiences, it’s important to add SEO to your marketing mix. Social media can help you excel here, too. Simply having an active and engaged Facebook account, YouTube channel or Yelp page, for example, will help your business rank in search engines.
Other ways to boost your rankings include sharing content socially through blogs, videos, etc. (even re-posting old content can help) and reminding customers to leave reviews on your free Google My Business profile.
Engaging With Brand Influencers
Social media is full of influencers, a.k.a. individuals with established credibility on a certain topic or specific industry who have massive followings. Instagram is notable for its influencer effect largely due to the ease with which followers can share images or short videos, thereby reaching even more people. Take a look at this list of nine of the biggest social media influencers on Instagram, and you’ll find household names and some not so well-known entrepreneurs.
Tagging influencers in your posts and building influencer marketing campaigns are both great ways to open up your business to new audiences.
Finding and Becoming Role Models
Role models are immensely important in business — and especially for female business owners. Good role models help new leaders understand the reality of running a company. They can be a source of inspiration and provide helpful ideas of what your business could become.
Social media makes finding role models simple and convenient. If you admire someone, famous or otherwise, it’s easy to find their digital profile and quickly follow and engage with them. Role models also share social content that can help you grow and develop, such as YouTube videos, podcasts or LinkedIn articles.
Women can also learn from each other by engaging with other female business owners in Facebook and LinkedIn groups where, again, they outdo men in their interaction with each other.
On the flip side of the coin, women don’t just benefit from having role models — they can also serve as role models themselves, using social platforms to connect with others and amplify their personal and business brand.
To reap all of the rewards social media has to offer, you have to actually get started using it. Once you get the hang of posting regularly, you’ll be able to increase your business’s presence while also learning a few lessons for yourself.