Saivian: 7 Fundamental Rules of Social Media That Will Make You More Successful In 2016

For small business owners, social media can be a very difficult thing to embrace. Many see it as just another way for people to waste their time online or are unsure of how it fits into their overall marketing strategy explains Saivian. The reality is that being active on social media sites is extremely important, especially if you want to build your customer base and grow your brand. With the growing popularity of social media networks like Facebook, Twitter, Google+, LinkedIn, and Pinterest (to name a few), here are 7 rules every small-business owner should know about spending time on these sites:

1. Link ALL Your Social Profiles to Each Other

Give people an easy way to connect with you by linking all your profiles together. For example, include links to your Facebook business page on your Twitter profile and include links to your LinkedIn profile in the “About” section of your website. This is one of the most overlooked mistakes small businesses make. By not linking all their profiles together, it makes it harder for customers to find them across different networks.

2. Always Respond To Comments and Messages

Never ignore a customer who reaches out to you through social media, even if they sent you a message on a network where you don’t have an official page (like YouTube or Soundcloud). If someone has taken time out of their day to say something nice about your brand or ask a question, the very least you can do is send a personal response back thanking them for taking the time to reach out. By responding, you’re letting them know that their comments are important to you and it will leave a nice final impression on them about your business.

3. Have an Official Strategy for Each Network You Use

Most small businesses use social media in an ad hoc way, meaning they randomly post things here and there without using any type of strategy or plan behind what they publish. Saivian says, before you start spending time on each network, take some time to map out your goals for why you want to be active on the site, who will manage your pages/accounts, how often you’ll post new content & more importantly how often others will be posting content for you (employees, customers, etc.). If you don’t have a social media strategy in place, it will be a lot harder to make a big impact on these sites.

4. Be a Conversational Marketer

Remember that social media is all about being social and talking with your customers. So don’t just post links or videos of your latest products or write boring statuses about how busy you are as a business owner. Instead, take some time to create interesting content that’s going to spark conversation between you and your network (e.g., “What kind of sandwich would Michelle Obama have at Subway?”). This will help you gain more fans/followers because they want to hear what you have to say…not just read random updates from a company profile page.

5. Share Content Other People Have Created About You

If you posted a link to an article about your business written by another website, share it on social media sites like Facebook and Twitter. Also if someone says something nice about your business on their page or in a comment, let them know that you appreciate the kind words. Saivian says this will not only help show your customers that they are appreciated but when they check out their profiles to see what else they’ve shared online, there’s a good chance they’ll remember who you are and come back to visit more often.

6. Never Use Auto-DMs on Twitter or Other Networks

Don’t use auto-messages when people follow you or send you friend requests on any of the networks mentioned in this post-Facebook/Twitter/etc.). The people who connected with you want to hear from YOU and not a prewritten message someone else created for you. This is another common mistake many businesses make on social media, but it’s an easy thing to avoid if you simply pay attention to what you’re typing/sending out there into cyberspace.

7. Set up Google Alerts for Your Brand Name & Keywords

Saivian says this will help you keep track of any mentions of your brand or company name across the Internet (be sure to change the keywords part if you have multiple products). By checking these alerts every day, it will make it easier for you to show up in search engines and be seen by even more customers than before. Also, tracking specific words/phrases that are related to your brand will help you stay ahead of the competition and come up with more ideas for upcoming content that could be published on each site.


Saivian explains there are numerous other things small business owners should keep in mind when managing their social media profiles, but these are some of the first steps I’d recommend after having worked with clients who have created new accounts on all or most of these platforms. If you really want to tap into what people are saying about your business online, it’s wise to have a presence on at least two networks…and carefully figure out how many more you want to invest time & energy into.