Social media- a beginners guide
hate it or want to give it a try? not sure where to start?
How good are you on social media? If I am honest Twitter used to frighten the life out of me, thinking that I would never be able to get the hang of it. Instagram…well I wasn’t cool enough, or so I thought. I still don’t think I am cool by the way (Ha Ha) I have just realised that it is a lovely platform to share work with other like minded people.
Above anything else, for some, it is important for business and a great way to reach lots of people and promote oneself without producing endless leaflets. Making links via the internet and keeping regular contact with people is important to help keep your business fresh in the minds of the consumer. Working collectively at markets to promote is the way forward, together you are stronger and can capture a larger audience.
Here is are the basics on to how to start & use social media effectively:
#Hashtags, Tags and @ these are things you may or may not be familiar with. It really isn’t too hard at all.
To get started you need to open an account. Keep the name most like your business as it is hard to change retrospectively. You have limited characters so mine had to be @myarti_markets as @myartisanmarkets wouldn’t fit.
Tip: I initially created 2 accounts, a personal one which I could play with and trial different things.
Write a bio (a description about what you do/who you are), I think this is pretty important and personalise it; people want to know where and who it is coming from.
Writing your first tweet. That’s the hard bit then everything else is easy.
- Photos work really well to catch attention.
- Tag people in photos – under the image it says ‘who’s in this photo’ click on here and add peoples Twitter handle (handle is the same a name, so Twitter name). Always happy for people to tag me! I will try to share where I can. Tag market organisers, fellow traders etc.
- #’s are good. Use towns/counties (#Manchester #Cheshire) or relevant #’s to your products #ceramics #cakes #myartisanmarkets etc.
And, you are off! Happy tweeting.
Personally I find this a little slower for me, but I think that people like themes and also work by one person on a feed (list of pictures on a person’s user area). Where as I always post about different people, not things I have done! Hopefully this makes sense so far!
As you are producing things you have made it is important you take lovely photos to make the most of it. Then post it! But the MOST important thing is to #! So if you are not sure what to hashtag, do some homework. Search (on google for example) for ‘best hashtags’, once you have a site put in your theme. If you are a cake maker, type in cakes and it will give you a list of cake related hashtags. Use only those that are relevant. This will get more people’s attention to your picture, even people you don’t know.
If you really want to grab someone’s attention, tag them! When you create your post, it offers chance to ‘tag someone’. Click the image then type in their Instagram name. People ‘tag’ me in an image, even if I am not actually in the image. I will 99% of the time ‘like’ the image.
Some influential people to watch/follow:
@joannehawker – she has a #marchmeetthemaker in normal words…. ‘March meet the Maker’ activity running at the moment, which is great fun. Every day she gives a theme and makers around the world potentially are writing posts! It is a fab idea and helps you to showcase what you do and gain new followers.
@hellodayplanner – She produces beautiful pics and writes lovely, personal posts about what she is doing and her products. Notice her feed, they all stay within set colours and style of photos, this makes her very popular.
@sunshine_jo – look at how she keeps to a theme. Yellow! Her feed really flows and so do her followers.
Whilst these people show us how it is done- very well. Most of us just take a pic and share it with friends. If you follow a theme as @sunshine_jo or take beautifully set up photos like @hellodayplanner you will quickly attract people to your feed but for some people that isn’t so important. Enjoy.
Creating a ‘Story’ (it is the circular images on your feed at the top- it is an instant ‘what I am doing now’ without spoiling their Instagram feed)…… this is possibly taking it to the next level for some, but if you want to know more I will write it in my next blog.
Most of us are pretty familiar with this anyway. But, here are a few tips.
Firstly set up a business page. On your personal FB page click settings, choose the option ‘create a page’ it will ask if you what type of business you are and set it up.
Get posting as most people know how on FB.
I have only recently started tagging people. If you write the facebook name preceded by an @sign, facebook will suggest business’/people and you can click on the relevant one. This allows the tagged person to know you are talking about them- getting their attention.
What does ‘boost post’ mean?
It means to advertise a piece of work. For as little as £2 you can promote a post or become a sponsored post. You may have seen these on your personal FB page. Again, photography is key here and you MUST target an audience. There are quite a few things to fill in but it is important. If you are selling dog accessories, make sure you target people with pets; FB knows who they are, you just need to select appropriate options. You can specify age groups and gender, this could be important for jewellery or baby clothes for example.
There is so much more to be said but I have tried to keep it simple as I may follow it up with more detail.
Hope this helps….
Look out for more blogs on the basics of photography, setting a stall & more ideas for social media.