Sometimes I think that everyone knows about social media. When you’re online all the time, it’s easy to think everyone is using it. But a lot of times social media is an afterthought, and requires learning some new skills. When people launch Etsy shop, small businesses, or even blogs, they aren’t all thinking about how they will post about it on Instagram. Not being their speciality, they realize just how much there is to learn! Since we’ve been posting social media tips for so long now, it’s easy to think that all our readers know the basics. But whether you’ve technically already kicked off your social media strategy or aren’t sure where to start, these 4 things are really important to know!
Social Media Works off Momentum
Not saying you can’t take a social media break, but you’ll build off what you’ve created before. For example, basic Instagram strategy is to post about two times per day (more on your stories). If you post great photos and use the best hashtags correctly, you’ll probably find your Instagram growing each day. But if you stop posting for a week, those numbers will start to fall off, and you might be back where you started 7 days ago. There’s many reasons for this (most times unfollows have nothing to do with you; they’re low quality followers you didn’t need in the first place), but staying active combats this and keeps you growing.
You Have to Plan Ahead
It might look like your favorite users post on a whim, but usually they’ve planned their posts at least a day, if not a week or more in advance. You can pretty much expect that most brands and influencers have done this, but anyone with a great feed has likely taken the time to plan posts. On Facebook, this might mean planning different types of content so that not every single post is a link to their blog, and on Instagram it usually means a gorgeous collection of photos (often taken on a dSLR). Even those less-curated Instagram Stories often have some element of planning that goes into them.
This sounds intimidating, but can be a huge relief! It means that you don’t have to be doing something glamorous or newsworthy every single day to have great content to post about.
Your Biggest Investment is Time
And it should be! If your goal is to grow your social media you should be spending time planning posts, dreaming up great concepts, researching share-worthy content, and just generally getting creative for your different accounts. While you might invest in props, experiences, photography equipment, and premium social media services (like Hootsuite Pro or Later), these are minor compared to the time you spend on these accounts. As your brand grows you might outsource some of this time or invest in other tools, but as a beginner–just like with a blog!–you spend a little money and a lot of time.
You’re Never Done Learning
When you think about this, this is true for most industries. But social media moves really fast, because it serves so many purposes. Not only does it take place on the digital landscape which hasn’t been around too long in the grand scheme of things, but it’s frequently used as a marketing tool, so you can expect it to evolve quickly over time. That means you have to stay on top of the latest developments in social media, like updates to your fave apps or new ones, business tools, algorithm changes etc. in order to make the most of it. Continuing to add to your toolkit will make your brand stronger and ahead of the curve!
Social media pros, what was the first major thing you learned when you first started?