Creative Start-ups Series – Social Media Tips from Screen 22

We recently did a Q&A with Amy Gathercole who runs the tiniest of tiny cinemas, Screen 22 on Broad Street in Nottingham. When asked for her top tips on using social media for SMEs, her answer was a blog in itself. So, we decided to post in two parts. If you’d like more of her wisdoms, read Pt One Here.

Over to Amy…

Bar my actual friends, social media is my best bud. Whether it be a huge brand you are curating or a small, tiny cinema it’s great. IT IS FREE (mainly) these days you can often find what you need, via handy apps too.

My top tips, 1 – 5.

ONE: Don’t use everything!

Pintrest, Twitter, Instagram, MailChimp, Facebook, G+ , Audio Boo, You Tube and the millions of others!

They will not all be relevant for your business, have a Facebook and Twitter that you actively update (HootSuite and other combined management systems are great if you really are too busy) as they are the obvious two that statistics show are the much used and engaged with, Facebook pages particularly have a great unique monitoring system to see traffic, likes, engagement and other things you will want to monitor as your business grows and custom hopefully increases.

You Tube is also a pretty great medium, video content can be very quick and cheap to make. It’s embeddable, shareable and quick to access and edit. Professional film crews aren’t always needed to show off a new product or service, grab your phone and record a customer’s reaction to your service and 5mins later you have a post to share around all of your networks and can monitor how well it does. Don’t expect it to go viral but it will assist your SEO greatly. Or even start a VLOG (something I have contemplated… but I prefer to write).

TWO: G+

Don’t just commit to holding its hand, aka having a presence on it, explore it now. In the next few years it will be taking over. Link your LinkedIn to it now, and ensure that all your SEO for your website cross-communicates. Essentially my advice (and I am currently taking it myself) is to prepare to have a full blown affair with G+ and get into bed with it now, not later.

Learn what a circle is (like a Twitter list), how to be in one, join a Google hangout for a live stream. Ensure you are aware of all the options that analytics offers you and that if your business has a premises that Google knows it for its maps feature. These are just a few or the masses of benefits that are set to roll out, so please commit now. My new favourite is that your google reviews are soon to be united with the reviews and ratings that customers leave on Facebook. Saving you more time, huzzah!

THREE: Know the difference between sharing and over sharing.

Keep your personal pages and professional pages separate. When sharing something about your business, a new offer, or promotion if you want your personal Facebook pals to be aware of it then share if from your businesses page, don’t just post directly. Take advantage of it.

FOUR: Get to know your customers, their traits, times and testimonials.

We live in the age of the internet, even my Grandma refers to being ‘on the line’ in common conversation these-days. Testimonials are key to raising the profile of your business, you can use them on your website, but also within social media. We post photos of the audience from every one of our 80’s Night screenings. The next morning the Screen 22 Facebook notifications are significant. The number of people who have seen the photo due to the engagement with it are often in the 1,000’s overnight and for a 22 seat cinema that isn’t half bad.

FIVE: Join a networking group, two, three, even five.

Meet new people but learn to not always pitch to them within seconds of meeting them, this isn’t speed networking. Ask them what they do, share best and worst practice as you work out what forms of social media work for you and your business and why.  Some are free, others you pay for, but there are lots of local events that you can attend. But my advice would be start with the laid back ones, like Open Link.

I’ve become a huge fan of Magnet Minute, a channel on YouTube coincidently hosted by someone also called Amy where a weekly video with hints and tips about some aspect of social media is discussed, promoted and encouraged. Check her out, for bite-sized info and inspiration.

Screen 22 on Facebook

@Screen_22 on Twitter

Many thanks to Amy, and as an editors note – I am not on G+ I don’t know how to work it, I couldn’t find a profile to link to…

For further social media tips written in early 2012 (the dark ages) by myself, see here.

 

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