How to Get Started Quickly with Social Media Marketing

One thing that prevents new VAs and freelancers from marketing their business on social media is not knowing how to get started.  It was one of the hot topics of conversation when we conducted a member focus group to determine what topics to include in our articles this year.  People said they wanted to know what kind of content to share, how to get ready to create content, and how to create it.

If you’re just starting out and don’t feel like you have any particular expertise to talk about, don’t feel like you have to wait until you do to get started on social media.  If you feel you don’t have wisdom to share with the world yet, don’t worry because you don’t have to!  You can simply share someone else’s.

1. Start with quotes and curated content.

Here’s a news flash: nobody comes up with great social media content from scratch.  We all take someone else’s ideas and rework them to make them our own.  It’s called “innovating.”

When it comes to finding quotes, you may think it will be hard to come up with enough to post, but you’ll be surprised at how easy it is.  Once you’ve decided to execute this strategy, the Baader-Meinhof phenomenon will kick in, and you’ll start noticing great quotes everywhere!

Start a file where you save quotes you like.  You can get enough to get you started with websites like BrainyQuote.com.  You can browse by topic or by author.  If there’s someone whose work you admire, search for their name and see what comes up!

2. Create branded images for your quotes.

Don’t skip this step.  I once had a client who posted two quotes a day, every day.  They were all great quotes, but he rarely got any engagement from them.  On a good day, he would have two or three likes, two of which would be from me and his wife!  They were just boring text, so nobody looked at them.  The idea is to create awareness of your brand.  Without an image with your logo included, your brand is “Generic.”

The fastest, easiest, and best-looking way for a layperson (i.e. someone who’s NOT a graphic designer) to create eye-catching images is with apps like Canva or Youzign.  I’ve used them both and personally prefer Canva.

This platform is user-friendly enough that people with average levels of tech-savvy can teach themselves how to use it.  Simply choose your image size, add a background photo, insert a text box for the quote, and most importantly, add your logo.  Voila!  You now have share-worthy content to post.

3. Master one platform at a time.

Don’t immediately start posting to every social media channel on the internet.  Start with the platform where your ideal customer is most active.  If you have questions about where that might be, then think about where your ideal customer is searching for his ideal customer.

For instance, if you work primarily with clients whose own clients are businesses, LinkedIn is your best bet.  If you work with clients whose target market is consumers, you’ll want to start with Facebook or Instagram since that’s where the people you want to work with are most active.

What works on one platform will not work the same on another.  You can’t generally copy a post you created for LinkedIn and have it work just as well on Instagram.  You don’t even want to post to multiple channels at the same time of day.  Engagement on LinkedIn is at its highest on Tuesday mornings, while engagement on Instagram kicks up around 7:00 pm Eastern on weekdays.

Choose the channel where you will get the biggest bang for your buck, master the formatting and timing of your posts, and then add other channels one at a time.  This will keep you from being frustrated by lack-luster engagement and make sure you are always putting your best foot forward online, wherever you’re posting.

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Rachael HodoRachael Hodo is the Founder of ProAdmin Solutions, LLC, a VA firm that specializes in general administration, content marketing, and association management services.  Rachael and her team work by referral only.  You can reach her on LinkedIn at linkedin.com/in/rachaelhodo.