7 Tips for Increasing Your Social Media Audience

Your business may have a solid marketing strategy, but do you have an effective social media marketing game plan. Small business owners who use social networking sites effectively are able to promote their businesses in powerful ways. Facebook estimates that it is home to more than 30 million active small-business pages. How will yours get noticed? How do you turn one fan into 1,000?

BlackEnterprise.com reached out to members of Young Entrepreneur Council (YEC), an invite-only organization comprised of the world’s most promising young entrepreneurs. In partnership with Citi, YEC recently launched StartupCollective, a free virtual mentorship program that helps millions of entrepreneurs start and grow businesses. The burning question we asked YEC members: As a new startup, what is one thing you suggest I do to get more likes on Facebook and/or followers on Twitter? Here are there hot tips.

1. Give Away Knowledge

Create useful, amazing content and promote it on Facebook and Twitter. People want to follow companies with knowledge that they are willing to share.

Vladimir Gendelman, Company Folders, Inc

2. Run a Contest

As long as you have an impressive enough incentive, you can get people talking about your brand by offering something many people would be interested in. By adding a layer that incentivizes sharing, you’ll be creating a referral engine that is bound to create more awareness and followership in the end.

Logan Lenz, Endagon

3. Be Active in the Social Space

Priori Legal tries to take a two-sided approach to social media. We use it as a content distribution platform, but also as a way for our customers and fans to interact with us and talk about the legal tech industry.

Basha Rubin, Priori Legal

4. Don’t Focus on Vanity Metrics

While it’s tempting to focus on “likes” and “follows” as the metrics for social success, you shouldn’t. “Likes” and “follows” don’t equal engagement or conversions. You should gauge the success of your social strategy by your ability to create engagement with your audience and drive conversions. Adding fans for numbers’ sake isn’t valuable. Focus on increasing brand affinity from your existing connections.

Brewster Stanislaw, Inside Social

5. Collaborate With Like-Minded Brands

We have always had the most success when we collaborate with brands our fans like. They don’t have to be big, they just need to be relevant. Doing a giveaway can work, though you should avoid having hundreds of people tweet, “Win this product from XYZ,” as that’s annoying for your core audience. Focus most on providing information that your fans can use or creating something that excites them.

Aaron Schwartz, Modify Watches

6. Treat Social Media Like a Dinner Party

Don’t be the person who only talks about themselves the entire time, and don’t just sit in the corner listening to everyone else. Share content you find great, engage with other people’s content and most importantly, just be yourself.

Joshua March, Conversocial

7. Become a Curator of Content

As long as the content is relevant to your brand’s personality, feel free to share it. Don’t feel that if it was created by someone unaffiliated, it doesn’t have a place on your page. Whatever solution your service provides, create an identity that makes you an expert at things that are directly and indirectly related.

Adam Stillman, SparkReel