Selecting the Right Social Network for your Small Business

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We know that as a small business you have to manage a limited, tight budget. All promotional and performance boosting initiatives, must be a calculated and strategic move and need to help drive growth. Online marketing, and social media, can help small business cut costs and the ability to showcase themselves. Both big brands and small businesses are now realizing that social media sites are invaluable marketing platforms. With millions of users online, it’s important for your company to choose the right social media channel. In an article by Emily Maltby and Shira Ovide (of the Wall Street Journal), not all social media tools can help your company grow. Here are 2 helpful and essential tips to help you choose the appropriate social media platform.

1.       Consider more than just site popularity

While Facebook is still considered to be the number one social network (over a billion monthly active users and over 600 million mobile users),  Twitter comes in second, with over 500 million registered users and 200 million active tweeters. YouTube has over a billion users and more than four billion views per day, but it is not considered to be a social media network by everyone. While LinkedIn only boasts approximately 200 million users it is also a preferred option to network professionally worldwide. It may be easy for business owners (and marketers) to select the top 2 (Facebook and Twitter), but it is important to consider many different social media a platforms as they all provide differing benefits. A few examples include: Pinterest, Instagram, Foursquare, and Google+.

 2.       Find one that works

Benchmark, test and review – it’s that simple. The most important factor to consider when choosing what social media tool should be selected and used by a small business is its effectiveness. The company must consider how to tool will reflect the brand, the interests of the company and the products and the services provided.

Online and most importantly social media marketing can give your small business a personalized and affordable option to increase your exposure and to compete with your competitors. With professional social media profiles your company will look credible and engaging. Your SEO will also increase, which is an added bonus as well.

If you need help selecting the appropriate social media networks, please feel free to reach out to me directly – I’m fairly active on my various social media accounts. 

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It’s Time to Launch your Mobile & Tablet-Friendly Website!

ImageWhether you’ve gone mobile or are just gearing up for the mobile leap, we’ve got 10 quick tips to you take the much needed plunge. Google notes that by 2013, more people will use their mobile phones than PCs to get online and since 2010, mobile searches have grown by 4 times! Customers expect your mobile website to be just as useful as your desktop site and bad mobile sites can cost you customers by pushing them to your competitors. Adobe has also mentioned that customers prefer to make purchases on mobile websites rather than apps!

These are also helpful hints to customize email for mobile use!

Hubspot reports that:

  • Nearly 10% consumers use a mobile phone or tablet to read emails
  • 39% of respondents said they open emails from trusted brands on their mobile phones
  • 49% respondents said that they have signed up for emails from 1 to 10 brands
  • Main reasons customers signed up for emails are offers/sales (61%) and discounts (59%) followed by being a regular customer (42%) and linking the brand (40%).

Keep It Quick

  • Make sure it loads fast
  • Compress your images (or eliminate some)
  • Prioritise your information
  • Keep content simple & to the point

Make the Layout Responsive

  • Aid discussion online
  • Add product details
  • Keep forms short
  • Make sure phone numbers are click to call & emails redirect to send an email

Be Thumb Friendly

  • Simplify Navigation
  • Use a clear website hierarchy and minimize scrolling
  • Keep links to 7 or less per page

Go Local

  • Include maps (Google), addresses & locations

Make it Seamless

  • Keep key site features & product/service information consistent with your desktop website

Use Mobile Re-Directs

  • Make sure your website redirects to your mobile website when searched on a mobile device (don’t worry your developer will do this)
  • Use large centered buttons

 Design for Visibility

  • Remember mobile screens are usually dim and users may be in low light
  • Use a contrast between foreground & text
  • The ideal font size is 12
  • Use negative space appropriately
  • Reduce zooming

Make it Accessible

  • Make sure your mobile site can be used on all devices
  • Find alternative to flash!
  • Implement vertical and horizontal use

Live & Learn

  • Ask your desktop users what they are looking for and what they would like to see on the mobile set
  • Always test before launch
  • Definitely use web analytics

Final Checks & Reminders