Every small business has the potential to make it big in today’s market. Small businesses have the world at their fingertips thanks to social media and social networking. True, some small business owners still resort to “killing trees” by taping brochures on doorknobs or handing out their menus at well-attended functions. But other small business owners are learning about social media sites and they like what they see. Compared to direct marketing techniques, social media marketing seems very easy, efficient and cost-effective. Taking it a step further, small business owners who want to go beyond their geography can finally tell the world about who they are and what they do through many different social media sites. The world is their oyster.
Sadly, many small business owners follow the well-intended advice they are given, either by their friends, family, or hired social media professional(s). Most small business owners end up on the main social media sites: Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and LinkedIn. Of course, there is nothing wrong with being on those sites. The problem? They may be losing business. A business or brand may have acquired dozens or even hundreds of followers on their business pages and accounts. They may even have frequent interactions and conversations with their followers. But a lack of leads and business may leave many small business owners perplexed…and frustrated.
What is a small business owner to do? A gradual shift that has been taking place in digital marketing over the past couple of years may hold the key. What is this shift? Using more pictures and fewer words. This concept is not a new one; pictures have always appealed to people. Many sites have figured this out, and their growing popularity proves it. These are some of the social media sites your small business should start taking seriously.
It was a not-so-quiet news day when Yahoo acquired Tumblr on May 20, 2013. Supposedly, thousands of bloggers and photographers who inhabited Tumblr decided to jump ship that day. This may or may not be true, because there are still plenty of people on the platform and volumes more registering daily. Small businesses who join Tumblr now have a leg up on their competitors who may lack the courage to venture into the unknown. Tumblr allows bloggers to post their articles as images – and the results are incredible. The imagery is one of the first things a new user may notice; yet another reason to make sure your content includes pictures. Tumblr is certainly one of the more visual social media sites.
Originally a photo-sharing site, Instagram has become a marketing playground. A small business can take creativity to new levels through displaying photos related to their brand, making them real for their target markets. Instagram is owned by Facebook; this makes it very easy for people to share photos from their Instagram accounts to several other social media sites. Instagram also added video-making capabilities very recently. The ease in sharing these pictures and videos further benefits a small business through increasing their reach…all in the blink of an eye, so to speak.
This platform has a very funny name….but your small business definitely needs to take this one seriously. For one thing, small businesses are able to create their own websites on this platform. This functionality makes RebelMouse different from pretty much all other social media sites. RebelMouse automatically pulls in content and displays it, all based on the users’ tags and keyword preferences. Users may also pull in content from the Internet in any form – text, images and video. The result is a dynamic and visually appealing page with plenty of options for sharing the posts appearing on it.
There are plenty of other sites that I could have included for small businesses to try. I chose these three because of their novelty, but also because they may just end up taking off…or even taking over. Just like all small businesses have the opportunity to make it big, so do many social media sites – but I personally think the sites that harness the power of imagery will benefit small businesses most in the long run.
I would love to hear whether you think your small business would benefit from being on these platforms…or not. Leave a comment below, email me ( jenn@jplussocial ) or tweet me ( @jennghanford ).
Images courtesy of jannoon028, imagerymajestic and KROMKRATHOG / FreeDigitalPhotos.net
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