You have your Social Media channels registered, but now you need to start working them to get something out of it. You want to build your brand, engage with your fans, get important insights and convert them into your website's visitors, ultimately making money. Most Social Media try to keep their visitors inside their network though, so it won't be easy.
Setting goals for your Social Media channels
At this point, you will have to decide what goals you want to achieve with your Social Media efforts. Your options:
- Building your brand
By being active on Social Media you make sure your name, logo and ideas get recognized.
- Building your network
Social Media, especially LinkedIn but also Facebook are great places to build your personal network.
- Engaging with fans for insights
By actively engaging with your following you can gain a lot of insights, which can be used to improve your website or your startup concept.
- Getting visitors
By sharing your website and its content you can attract visitors to your site. If you're big on Social Media, this can be a substantial amount of traffic.
- Work on your Google ranking
For most websites, this is a side effect of pursuing one of the other goals, but it can be a goal in itselves. Being big on Social Media can help your site rank well in Google.
How do I grow my Social Media channels?
Being big on Social Media is hard work. On our page about claiming your social media channels you can find more information about growing on the most important Social Media networks.
You can also choose to pay to increase your amount of fans/followers. This can work, but be critical in deciding whether or not the investment is worth it. If you decide to invest in getting fans, make sure you are targeting people that are your potential customers. Getting fans from India is much cheaper than getting fans from the US, but can you monetize them?
Another method to grow on Social Media is to run giveaways and competitions. Be careful to respect the guidelines that Social Media give when you are organizing a giveaway though, the rules can be quite strict. And you need to realize that most fans you gain from a giveaway are gone afterwards, or are at least harder to monetize than fans that follow you because they like your work.
I have invested much time in Social Media and my Facebook page has over 100k fans. This has proven to be one of the best investments of my time, as every new article I write, the eBook I published some time ago and movies I create are instantly popular and well visited. And my personal network has grown significantly. Social Media turned out to be crucial to my website's success.Oscar, bonsaiempire.com
How do I turn fans into visitors?
The answer to this question depends on what Social Network you are referring to.
In most cases (Facebook, Google+ and Twitter) you can post photos and text messages with working links to one of your pages. This works pretty well in fact, but the more you do this, the less clicks you will generate. Key is to balance the type of posts you share. I'd say one in four posts should contain a working link. With Facebook you can turn fans into customers, by starting an online shop within the Facebook website. Check Shopify or StoreFront.
Other networks are more closed, especially Instagram. With Instagram no links can be added to posts, so the only way you generate traffic is by persuading fans to type in your domain name and surf to your website. Since Instagram is mostly mobile based, that is not happening.
If it is traffic you seek, focus on Facebook. If you are building your brand name or your personal network, the other networks are all recommended.
Social Media; check!
You now know how to build and utilize your Social Media channels.
Next step; starting to make money with your website.