Should you use social media for your business?

The obvious answer may seem a resounding yes, if you look at the number of us active on social media these days and the reference to social media hashtags all over the TV and radio. However, the answer is a little more complex than a simple yes. You should only be using social media if it’s right for you and your business, what I mean by that is will you have the time to manage social media? Or do you have the budget to outsource social media to be professionally managed? If not, you may not be ready for the world of social media, done poorly it can be more harmful than good.

Take for instance a potential customer researching your salon and they come across your twitter page, however it hasn’t posted since 2015, it has very few followers and generally looks a sad and lost profile. At worst, they may think you’ve gone out of business and look elsewhere and even if they do still contact you it doesn’t shout professionalism to them so won’t do you any favours.

If you decide you will commit to the time necessary (at least 2-3 hours a week) to manage your own social media then great, you should now consider which platforms to use. It can be wise when you first start out to register the handles related to your business name for all platforms but that doesn’t mean you should start by posting on them all. Firstly, consider where your customers are on social, start by simply asking them. Also consider their age, platforms like Snapchat (18-24) and Instagram (25-34) are generally (but not always) for a younger audience whereas Facebook for instance spreads across the age groups.

Once you’ve chosen the relevant platform(s) you now need to consider what to post, my general advice is to start off by being as educational as possible. Don’t just promote your services straight off the bat, consider how you can answer questions your customers commonly ask or give some relevant tips away to make their lives easier. I like the rule 40/40/20 – 40% educational posts, 40% engagement (replying, commenting, asking questions) and 20% promotional (sharing discounts or offers on your products/services). This will give you a good base to see what’s working and what isn’t working so well.

Tools such as Hootsuite can help you manage your social media pages by scheduling posts in advance, however be mindful social media is a 2-way street so still find time to login and interact with your followers live.

Good luck and as ever Green Shoot Marketing are here should you need a guide in the right direction for your salon.