I have started many small micro-businesses. I even consulted a few people. It’s hard starting from scratch, but with proper planning and the power of social media you can go from a nobody to a somebody really quick. There are some quick start tips, but the truth is, for momentum, you have to put out the feelers and the foundation for your online exposure early.
SOCIAL MEDIA FOR PERSONAL VS BUSINESS
I advise setting up two different social media accounts. Setting up a media account for your business, with your business name, logo, and professional photo on all social media platforms. Once you set up your accounts, use tools like IFTTT (If this, then that) to make each post to your social media platforms count. This tool will take a blog post and replicate it to post on twitter, Instagram and other social media sites. Also, use tools like Hoot suite or Socialoomph to do the same.
Creating a blog and posting to it weekly gives you content you can push to all your other social media platforms to create an ever running presence.
GETTING EXPOSURE FOR YOUR NEW PLATFORM
In order to boost your presence you need to start collaborating with other likeminded businesses, people, and prospects. The easiest places to find them is on Quora, Facebook, Instagram, Forums, other Blogs. You can set up a collaborative blog hop with other bloggers or twitter chat with other businesses. Usually, it just takes asking the question and you will be surprised with how much people will help you for free.
Other options is to purchase exposure or trade it. If you have a newsletter, then you can request someone swap information in their newsletter for yours. Both of you get exposure. Collaboration with others is the best form of exposure. It’s like an unwritten word of mouth.
WRITE ARTICLES AND SHARE YOUR BLOG POST
There are services for media calls like HARO. You can also post it on other open sites like Medium, Reddit, LinkedIn Articles and ask other bloggers to post.
TELL EVERYONE ABOUT YOUR BUSINESS IN PRESS RELEASES
Every stride your business makes, share the news through press releases. There are many free press release sites to use and doing so gets your name and your business name out there to a different set of readers. You can pay to have your press released shared to newspapers and magazines, just don’t make the message too sales focused, and more about sharing of information or ways your business is helping the community.
ADVERTISE FOR FREE and BUY ADS
After you have your social media sites set up, and you have a working and chiming feed of information from your random post and your blog post, start to purchase ads. By this time you should know your audience and have somewhere that is filled with information and others of like mind to interact with through your channels. Budget and test your ads before you pour your money and efforts in other areas.
First, go for the free options such as sharing videos, webinars, and promos on your blog, Facebook page, website, and some of your collaborators blogs. Take your videos and post that are doing well on Facebook as a boost, then create an ad based on your findings. After you have utilized the free exposure, then consider google ads, Facebook ads, optimization of your website and promo wherever your content resides. Then consider buying ads where your product is sold.