What you need to know about expanding your small business
There’s no getting around the fact that social media is essential if you own a small business. These user-oriented platforms are the ideal environment to build brand awareness, foster customer relationships, and get seen by your target demographic—helping you boost sales and achieve your business goals.
Making a few posts here and there won’t cut it though; you need to have a solid strategy in place and stay on top of trends to keep your audience engaged.
To help you succeed on social media, we’ve done our research and rounded up five current trends that you can leverage to boost your presence in 2022 and beyond.
Social media trends for small business
Taking to TikTok
Over the past year, businesses have been flocking to TikTok—a short-form video app that’s quickly made its way to the front of the social media pack.
TikTok was the most downloaded app in 20211 and in September reached 1 billion total users, which is a 45 per cent increase from the 689 million they had just nine months before in July 20202.
TikTok has become so popular so fast because of its unique algorithm that rewards content over results. The primary timeline of the app, known as the ‘For You’ page, offers users a steady stream of videos from people they don’t follow, with any follower count, based on content they’ve interacted with in the past. This means you don’t have to have a massive following for your videos to reach the right audience and get seen by the masses, which is a big plus for small businesses.
The seemingly endless amount of sounds, memes, dances, and challenges that can be used to create content also allows small businesses to promote their products in authentic, entertaining ways, and make their mark on the app.
As a small business owner, making the migration to TikTok will allow you to reach new audiences, stay relevant and expand your content offering. Thanks to TikTok’s useful business tools, including business profile, ads, and a creator marketplace, it should be easy enough to make the move.
A rise in social commerce
When the Covid-19 pandemic erupted and stay-at-home orders were put in place, people naturally spent a lot more time online, browsing and buying. Social media platforms took this as an opportunity to introduce commerce tools so users could purchase products directly from where they were scrolling, allowing them to become popular retail platforms.
This retail-isation of social media is likely to only continue, so it’s important to consider how your small business can hop on board and give your customers the frictionless shopping experience they’re looking for.
In saying this, your in-store payments solution is just as important as your online one (if you’re looking for a secure option for your small business, our Tyro EFTPOS solution could be the right solution for you).
Building a community, not just customers
Social media has become so much more than a place to sell products and services. It’s also about building a community that cares about your brand.
Creating relationships between your customers, and offering a place to share, discuss and experience your brand, is essential to getting them to stick around and sing your praises. So, if you haven’t already, it’s time to up the community feel of your social media profiles.
You can do this by using interactive stories, posing questions, responding to comments, and sharing user-generated content. You can even go one step further and create a private community page, such as Facebook Groups, to bring your customers together and engage with them in a meaningful way; the added benefit of this space is that you can use it to share exclusive content, seek customer feedback, and gain valuable customer insights.
Paid advertising is worth considering
While nothing new, paid advertising is becoming more important as reaching users organically becomes more challenging.
This comes after Houtsuite’s Social Trends 2022 survey revealed that the decline in organic reach and the need to spend more on paid advertising was the number one challenge for small to medium-sized businesses.
Paid advertising will therefore become a key marketing tool to get your content seen by the people you want to see it; so adding it to your social media marketing strategy should be a consideration in your tool bag of marketing strategies.
Short-form videos are in, long-form is out
Short-from videos reigning supreme is no surprise when you consider the rise of TikTok, Instagram Reels, and YouTube Shorts.
This video format has become the go-to because they drive more views, rather than long-form videos which can often be dismissed by viewers entirely due to our short attention span as humans.
To put the power of video into perspective:
- Tweets with videos generate 10x more engagement than those without3
- Videos on Instagram get more engagement than other formats4
- Pinterest reported a 240% increase of organic video pins from 2020 to 20215
Ensuring you’re incorporating plenty of short-form vertical videos into your social media marketing strategy is therefore a must for small businesses.
Social media is an essential part of running a small business, and as it continues to evolve, so should the way you use it. To make your social media count, ensure you implement a solid social media marketing strategy and stay on top of trends, such as the ones we’ve discussed above.
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1 ‘Worldwide and US Download Leaders 2021’ report. https://blog.apptopia.com/worldwide-and-us-download-leaders-2021
2 Statist survey: Number of monthly active users (MAU) of TikTok worldwide from January 2018 to September 2021. https://www.statista.com/statistics/1267892/tiktok-global-mau/
3 Alton, L. (n.d.). How video is reshaping digital advertising. Business Twitter. https://business.twitter.com/en/blog/how-video-is-reshaping-digital-advertising.html
4 HubSpot and Mention: “Instagram Engagement Report 2022 Edition” https://mention.com/en/blog/video-engagement-instagram/
5 Pinterest Newsroom. (2020). How to use Pinterest to master inspirational video.