This post was originally published on September 30th, 2016. It was updated on October 11th, 2017.
(This post contains an affiliate link.)
Are you currently using social media for your creative business? In this day and age, you might be surprised to know that many online business owners still aren’t investing the time they should into social media. Many of them feel like they don’t have time to dedicate to all the platforms out there, while others don’t see the benefits it can bring for their business. There are even business owners who see the importance of social media, but they don’t take it seriously enough so they never see the results they were expecting.
Here’s the thing: If you’re running an online business (or even a local business), you need to be on social media. You should be focused on growing your presence and connecting with your audience. When you put the effort into creating an effective social media strategy, you’re guaranteed to see your business grow. And who wouldn’t want that?
Why You Need Social Media for Your Creative Business
If you need a little convincing to start taking social media seriously, I’m here to help. There are a few key reasons you need to use social media for your creative business, which I’m sharing with you. Let’s dive in!
1. Social Media Drives Traffic to Your Website
This is pretty obvious, but social media can be a huge driver of traffic back to your website. However, some people are afraid to use social media as a promotional tool or they’re unsure of how to promote themselves in the right way. They worry about coming off as too “salesy” or they’re afraid to put themselves out there.
As Gary Vaynerchuk would say, self-promotion on social media is all about throwing a few jabs before you hit your followers with a right hook. What he means is, you need to build trust and provide value first before you can ask for a sale. Don’t pitch your products and services with every post you share. Social media is more about giving your audience what they want. (Side note: I highly recommend Jab, Jab, Jab, Right Hook by Gary for anyone needing help on social media.)
To prevent yourself from being too self-promotional, you’ll want to mix it up when it comes to your posts. Don’t just share your own content, but also add in curated content from other sources. It adds value and gives your audience plenty of great content to consume.
For me, social media plays a huge role in building my business. Pinterest is my number one traffic referral, driving more traffic to my site than organic search. It’s pretty crazy, but I’ve seen those results because of the effort I’ve put into building a Pinterest presence.
2. It’ll Help You Land Clients and Customers
With a great social media strategy in place, you can even turn your casual followers into paying clients and customers. In fact, it’s how many people have discovered me and my brand. And if you’re going to use social media for your creative business, you want to see big results!
Landing clients and customers on social media starts with knowing and understanding your audience. You need to know who you’re targeting so you can attract all the right people to your profiles. Then, you can provide the content they’re looking for, which adds value to their lives. From there, you want to engage with your audience and build a relationship with them to establish trust.
3. Social Media Positions You as an Authority in Your Niche
If you’re ready to be the go-to gal for whatever it is you do, social media can help build your authority within your niche. In order to do this, you want to show your expertise by sharing helpful content and by being of service to your followers. It shows you know your stuff!
Not only that, but you can also join Twitter chats and Facebook groups as a way to connect with new people and share advice. This is going to help build trust with your followers, as they realize they can count on you for great content all the time.
4. It’s the Perfect Way to Make Connections
When it comes to making connections online, social media provides the perfect opportunity to meet new people. And it doesn’t just have to be potential clients or customers! You may even find your business bestie through social media. No matter who you’re trying to connect with, the key is to use social media socially. That’s what it’s for, after all!
You can start conversations with people by responding to them or asking your own questions. Use it as a listening tool to see what others are talking about and engaging. Social media is meant to be social and if you’re not engaging with your audience and other people, you’re missing the point.
5. Social Media Allows Your Audience to Get to Know You
Have you heard of the “KLT Factor”? If not, listen up! It stands for Know, Like, and Trust. In order to build trust with your audience, they need to get to know you and start liking you first. And without trust, you can’t expect anyone to ever buy anything from you.
Through social media, your audience gets to see who you are outside of your blog posts and email newsletters. They get to see the face behind the brand as your personality shines through in your posts. This is going to help your followers form a stronger connection with you. This is why it’s important to be yourself and give people the behind-the-scenes look into you and what you do. Instagram Stories is a great way to do this.
6. And You Can Get to Know Your Audience
Are you feeling clueless about how you can best serve your audience? Hop onto social media! You can search relevant topics and hashtags to locate your audience and see what they’re talking about. This is a great chance to discover their pain points and create the content that helps them out. When you use social media for your creative business, you also make it easier for them to reach out to you. If you’re an authority, they just might come to you and tell you what they need help with.
7. It Can Be a Customer Service Opportunity
Have you ever contacted your favorite brand via social media when you had a question or a problem? I don’t know about you, but I certainly have. A quick message on social media is so much easier than getting stuck on hold listening to crappy music while you wait for the next available operator. Instead of taking phone calls or emails, social media opens up the lines of communication between you and your customers. This is a great reason to use social media for your creative business because you’re better able to serve your customers.
Twitter is really the best platform for this because it’s ideal for real-time conversation. Customers can send over a short message and you’re able to respond with ease. It doesn’t get much better than that! Plus, they’ll appreciate a quick reply. If you do this, make sure you’re paying attention to your replies and taking time to respond.
8. Social Media Allows You to Spy on Your Competitors
If you’re not paying attention to what your competitors are doing online, you need to start now. While I don’t encourage anyone to obsess over what someone else is doing, it can provide great insights. Search for your competitors on social media and check out their profiles. Pay attention to what they’re doing right and where they’re falling short with their efforts. You even want to check out what their audience is saying because it can help guide you in the right direction.
9. You Have the Ability to Use Ads
When you’re using social media for your creative business, you get the ability to use ads. Even if you don’t foresee yourself using paid advertising, you should still keep your options open. Facebook ads have been extremely beneficial for a variety of business owners by helping them generate brand awareness and for list building.
10. If You Don’t Manage Your Reputation, the Internet Will
Let’s be real… Whether you’re on social media or not, you have a reputation online. People are going to talk about you on Twitter even if you aren’t on that platform. Don’t you want to be there to respond to those people, especially if it’s something negative? (And no, I don’t mean you should start an internet war with them.)
When you’re present on social media, you have the ability to manage your reputation. If any negative comments or complaints come through, you can address them quickly and easily. When ignored, those types of remarks can actually do damage to your brand. Instead, it’s better to be there and be ready to respond to anything that comes up.