Small Businesses are tempting to keep up with the latest craze, social media. There are currently 900 million active Facebook users, 200 million active Twitter users and latest social media tools hitting the market, such as Pinterest. As small businesses start to dive into the social media world, there are a few mistakes they are making.

Social media outlets are not the place to hard sell. Simple as that. Marketing budgets for small businesses are typically small, so using a social media site to not sell can be confusing to most. Only 5-10% of your social media activity should be devoted to self-promotional. Social media is there to build business relationships and show that you are a company that can be trusted. Social media and marketing are in fact similar, yet should be both used for different purposes.

Social media is all about connecting. You cannot connect with someone if all you do is spend time talking about yourself. Engaging in communication with your social media followers is what is important. Showing you care about their opinion and how they feel is what matters.

New social media networks appear everyday. It is important for small businesses to realize that they do not need to join every site. Limiting your social media outreach to websites that compliment your products/services is important. Focusing on a few sites is more effective than joining every site available. Neglected social media websites can reflect poorly on a small business.

Small businesses also have to realize that big brands have the time, resources, and money to run their social media websites as if it was their number one priority. Using the resources available and the time a small business can engage followers in others ways than large businesses do.

Social media is not free. Sure it is free to join just about every social media website, but the time and effort put into keeping up with the website comes at a price. Coming up with a social media plan can save money and allocate social media websites that work for a small business. 



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