Best Practices for Optimizing Your Social Media Profiles

Whether you’re a small business or a massive corporation, social media is a valuable tool to reach new (and existing) customers. Because these platforms are free for everyone, they enable businesses to connect with a massive audience, all without a hefty upfront investment. Unfortunately, many small companies don’t know how to utilize social media effectively, so they’re not getting the traction they should.

If you’re not sure about social media marketing and engagement, here are some stats to illustrate their value:

  • Up to 78 percent of users are willing to buy from a business after a positive social media interaction.
  • Over half (55 percent) of all customers discovered new products or services on social media sites.
  • Almost all (91 percent) businesses plan to increase their social media budgets over the next three years. This statistic illustrates that you have to be on these platforms to keep up with the competition.

So, now that you understand the value of social media marketing, let’s dive into the best practices for setting up and building a high-quality profile on each site.

Step One:
Create Branded Cover Photos and Images

Regardless of the platform you’re using, you should treat it as a proxy of your website. For some businesses, Facebook becomes their defacto site until they can build something separate.

So, when users visit your social media pages, they should know who you are and what you’re offering. The first step toward providing that insight is a branded cover image and profile photo. Ideally, these pictures should be proprietary to your business, not stock imagery from a website. This way, you can put a watermark over each image, and you have more control over how you use it.

You should also use different images for each platform. It helps to understand the primary audience for these social media sites so that you can appeal to them directly. For example, Facebook skews to an older demographic, while TikTok is popular with Gen Z users and Millennials. Your cover photos can also reflect the type of content you post on each site.

For example, on Instagram, you might have lifestyle photos of models using your products or services. On TikTok, you can use a still image or a Gif, allowing you to highlight your video marketing content.

Step Two:
Add Links to Your Website and Other Social Profiles

The primary benefit of social media marketing is finding new leads and converting them into customers. Realistically, your profiles should act as a sales funnel, guiding visitors to your website and landing pages. That said, each platform works a bit differently as a funnel. For example, you can only put one link in your Instagram profile. However, you can add multiple links to your Facebook page.

When using profile links, it’s often better to focus on a specific landing page. If possible, you can create a unique landing page for each social media profile. Doing this allows you to see what kind of traffic you’re getting from each site so that you can focus your attention accordingly. For example, if most of your audience is coming from Facebook, but no one clicks your Twitter link, you can scale back your tweets and focus more on Facebook posts.

Also, keep in mind that you can share links on your posts. However, not all platforms allow link-sharing across the board. For example, you can embed a link in your Instagram story, but you can’t add it to a regular post. By comparison, you can add links to Facebook posts and tweets, giving you more flexibility.

Step Three:
Upload Your Logo

As a business, your logo acts as the first impression between you and your customers. So, you want to highlight that logo as often as possible. Did you know that it takes up to five to seven interactions with a company for most users to remember it? That statistic illustrates the value of branding and repetition. The more often that users see your logo, the more likely they’ll recall your business later.

Once you have a logo you will need to resize it for the various social media platform you use. Make sure you follow the best practices for using your logo on social media.

In addition use to the best practices follow this tips:

  • Use Contrasting Colors or Images – If you want your logo to stand out, you need to pay attention to your background. Also, keep in mind that some users may use a dark interface, so pay attention to how the image looks on both white and black backdrops.
  • Be Consistent With Placement – If you put your logo in the bottom left corner of each photo or ad, you should keep it there as often as possible. If your logo bounces around with different images, it can be distracting.
  • Don’t Overpower Your Images – While a stunning logo can capture attention, you don’t want it to draw away from the main focus. So, logos should be present but not the center of attention.

Step Four:
Use Hashtags and Keywords

One of the best ways to discover new pages, profiles, and products on social media sites is through hashtags. You can also utilize keywords for your social media profiles so that they pop up on search results. In some cases, your Facebook page may rank higher than your website, so you need to capitalize on that accordingly. Also capitalize on trending hashtags where your brand can have a voice in broader conversation taking place.

When it comes to hashtags and keywords, follow these tips:

  • Stay Focused – It’s easy to get carried away with hashtags, especially if you’re still trying to find your audience. Instead, use a primary hashtag and a few related keywords. This way, it’s easier for the algorithms to rank your profile. Do the same thing for social posts as well.
  • See What People Are Saying – Find a few hashtags related to your business and look up the top posts with that tag. Doing this can help you get insight into the conversations people are having about the topic. In some cases, you may be able to use the hashtag for your own benefit. In other instances, you might want to steer clear. Never use a trending hashtag without knowing what it’s referencing.
  • Create Hashtags for Your Business – It’s always best to be proactive on social media so that you can come up with hashtags of your own. The simplest option is to use your business name or come up with a slogan. If you post this hashtag with each post, users will start to recognize it. You can also use hashtags for contests and giveaways to build some buzz around your brand.

Step Five:
Let People Know About Your Products or Services

Your social media profiles should act as landing pages for your website. So, visitors should be able to see what you have to offer right away. All social platforms allow you to create a short blurb about your business. So, you need to develop a tight, one or two-word sentence that describes your brand.

With Facebook, you can go much deeper and provide other details, such as your location, hours of operation, contact information, and more. You can also sell products directly through Facebook, making it a valuable revenue stream.

Since your profile information is limited on other sites, use pinned posts to provide more insight. For example, on Twitter, you can pin a tweet to the top of your page. This tweet can have further information or a link to a specific landing page on your site. On Instagram, you can embed stories on your profile that won’t disappear after 24 hours.

Step Six:
Highlight Your Brand Values

Another valuable element of social media marketing is that it empowers your business to connect with customers directly. While these platforms are excellent for advertising, you can’t forget the “social” aspect of social media.

Thankfully, you can highlight your brand values in a few ways:

  • Targeted Posts – You can provide information about how you’re giving back to the community, or you can give a peek behind the scenes to show how you operate.
  • Shared Posts – If other profiles create content that relates to your brand values, you can share those posts with your followers.
  • Hashtags – Find some hashtags that relate to your brand values and incorporate them into targeted posts.

Step Seven:
Add a CTA (or Multiple)

Since your social media profiles are limited, you want to use them as a call to action. The simplest option is to incorporate a website link in your blurb, but you can get creative. For example, if you’re hosting a contest, you can add a link to that landing page that explains the rules and prizes. Then, once the competition finishes, you can use your profile to share information about the winner(s).

Overall, don’t treat your social media profiles as immutable constants. Instead, be sure to change your profiles regularly to reflect what’s going on with your business. Having a dynamic social profile encourages users to return again and again to see what’s new. This process also allows you to adapt to a changing marketplace.

Now that you know how to use social media profiles, you’re prepared to make your mark on the industry. Happy posting!