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Social media
for small business:
Mastering your
social presence
with technology

Author: Satta Sarmah Hightower

Small businesses often use social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn to promote their business and engage with customers, especially given the digital parameters they now work with during the COVID-19 pandemic.

With billions of users on all these platforms combined, using social media for small business is a valuable way to boost brand awareness, tell your story and increase revenue. If you're just getting started on any of these platforms or if you want to retool your messaging, here are some tips for mastering social media for small business—and the technology you need to support a social media strategy for your small business.

Social media for small business: Cultivating your social media strategy

There's no hard or fast rule about what small businesses should post on social media, but whatever you post should feel authentic to you and how you want to present your business.

Many businesses post motivational messages on social media. They may share their business story, anecdotes about the times they've faced challenges as an entrepreneur or inspirational quotes. If that's not your style, you could use social media to share business tips or give your customers a behind-the-scenes peek into your business. If you run a seafood restaurant, this could be a quick Instagram Story showing your followers how to shuck an oyster at home or the proper way to peel shrimp. If you run a landscaping business, you could offer advice for how often a homeowner should water their lawn or simple tips for planting new flowers in a garden bed.

Looking for another way to use social media for small business? Try producing promotional posts. Through this, you can advertise upcoming sales, offer exclusive deals and discounts to customers and followers, or share special events that will happen in-store, such as a trunk sale, book signing or holiday party. The great thing is that these announcements don't have to be simple text posts. You can get creative and post pictures, graphics or a quick 30-second video with your camera phone to share the news with your customers and add a personal touch. With free graphic design tools that provide templates you can use, all you have to do is plug in your text, save your graphic and upload it to your business's social media pages.

There also may be times where you want your social media pages to reflect current events, such as Small Business Saturday, Black Friday or local holidays and commemorations in your town.

For many of these situations, high-performing, reliable network connectivity is crucial to support social media strategy for small business.

Good network connectivity can help support social media strategy for small business

As a small business owner, the most important thing you need to consider before choosing a wireless network is the coverage. You can prevent many of the performance issues or network disruptions you might encounter when uploading content if you select a provider that offers reliable, wide-ranging service in your area.

After this, you'll need to figure out how much network bandwidth and speed you require. If you'll be uploading large-file videos to social media, then you might want to opt for a higher-tier service plan. To determine what kind of plan you need, you can check your current network speed. However, if it feels like it takes your videos or image files more than several seconds to load, then you probably need a faster network.

Other situations can affect your network performance, too, such as network congestion or if you're using an old device that doesn't support faster internet connections. Either way, it's a good idea to determine all the online activities your business will use the internet for and then assess the bandwidth and speeds you may need for these activities. For example, file sharing takes up five megabits per second of network bandwidth, while high-definition video consumes four megabits per second. This reference list is a good starting point to gauge the bandwidth requirements for several common business activities.

Once you have a better understanding of your business's network requirements, you could just purchase a standalone plan, although it may be better to use a managed service provider that offers a suite of interoperable hardware and software-based solutions that you can easily install and scale up as your business grows. This suite of solutions could include a preconfigured 4G LTE-enabled router, a desk phone, voice connectivity, built-in security that protects devices on your network from malware and other cyber threats, as well as around-the-clock, dedicated technical support to help your business with network management and troubleshooting.

Using social media ideas for small business is an invaluable way to connect with current and potential customers. As you try to master your small business' presence on social media, you'll need right content—and the right connectivity.

By choosing the right network and technology, you can ensure that this connection isn't a faulty one and that customers receive your message loud and clear.