For businesses, big or small, not having a social media presence is a major disadvantage. This is because we have reached an era where companies are expected to be more connected to the community.

The implementation of an effective social media existence, however, is not a straightforward journey. It requires both preparation and planning, with an aim of effectively targeting and maintaining a loyal audience base that can instantly find any relevant information through the company’s content.

Social media can be utilized for building a competitive advantage that can especially lead your business towards a clear online marketing direction. Platforms such as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram are mass communication channels, and they could serve as gateways for maintaining good relationships with current and potential customers.

By not utilizing these online media channels, business can experience a loss of opportunity in attracting customers through the internet, particularly those who belong to the Generation Y and Z.

Start with a website

Before setting up social media platforms, the company should start with an official website. For websites, one important thing is appearance.

This is the place where people from all around the globe will come to get to know more about the company. Since first impressions only take less than a second, the right color scheme and font are must-haves for the website. They must represent the company’s brand so that people can remember and identify with it easily.

The purpose of having a website is to facilitate visitors, not to give them a hard time or confuse them. Maintaining a clean and professional appearance is crucial, but usability is equally important. Do not let the audience visit your amazing-looking website only to find a number of dead links.

Publish content

Having a website without content is like owning a house without inhabitants: it loses soul and dignity. Contents can attract the right kind of audience for your business. Concentrate on how to publish them periodically.

You may also consider giving exciting promotions is another way to engage the masses. For example, if your company focuses on the fashion industry, upload photos of your customers wearing your products and mention them on the company’s website and social media accounts. Else, the company can hold social activities to gather its followers, for instance a charity event or blood donation drives.

Be generous to share

After establishing a website with interesting content, the next path is to share them on social media platforms. This provides an attractive path due to their accessibility and low resource use, depending on the strategy.

However, possessing a considerable amount of social media accounts can possibly carry the business into another level in terms of collecting followers. Can those accounts be handled wisely? If the company has enough resources, sure. Just make sure you study the different social media platforms, with their varied policies and audiences.

“Each network offers a unique point of connection: Facebook’s statuses, wall posts, and pictures make it ‘the yearbook of social networks,’ while Twitter’s short format, rapid fire, newsy posts make it the place to be in the know about the here and now, and LinkedIn takes professional networking to a whole new level,” explains Cami Bird on Entrepreneur.

Prioritizing online presence

Small and medium businesses with limited resource should pick a smaller number but most suitable social media platforms. Having a limited number of accounts is not a disadvantage; on the contrary, it makes the companies appear more personal to the followers.

Through these accounts companies are easily reaching out to people: possible consumers, audience, or followers, you name it. When they deliver their complaints or compliments, try to reply or respond back. It can be perceived as a reciprocal act to thank the consumers for their input.

Exciting content would make visitors guessing and longing for more. Find original and fresh ideas to put on your online platforms. Be diverse but not too much: create content that are still consistent with your companies’ vision and objective.