Ever feel like social media is changing so fast, you can’t possibly keep up? You’re not alone. While a good social media strategy shouldn’t change, the tactics you use to achieve your goals can change almost overnight when Facebook rolls out a new fan page design or a juggernaut like Pinterest appears on the scene. What’s a small business owner to do?

In our small business social media survey, we asked how small businesses were tweaking their social media strategy in 2012. Some of the most interesting answers:

  • “Being more aggressive in asking for business rather than relying on people to come to me because I provide content.”
  • “Posting relevant content to each target audience.”
  • “Creation of a content marketing strategy in lockstep with our social media presence. We defined our primary social channels and which content type is best suited for which channel.”
  • “We’re continually adjusting it. We evaluate performance (metrics) on a monthly basis. Ex., expanding our YouTube channel this year, redesigning our website to have more social elements, looking at channels beyond LinkedIn, Twitter and FB. Pinterest anyone? Who knows what next week or month will bring. It’s designed to be nimble.”
  • “I am trying to use LinkedIn more.”
  • “Changed it to ‘Tell Our Story’ more, and also to try to engage and start/have a conversation. We have also been trying to use social media to help other organizations, not just our own.”
  • “I have convinced upper management that we can use a more personal approach to our social media outlets. In prior years it was strictly business with no interaction allowed. This year has been more open and allowed for more interaction.”
  • “Yes. We’ve hired a full-time community manager to optimize and manage our social profiles to get it out of owners’ and interns’ hands.”
  • “Watching data more. Paying more attention to type and timing of posts and responses. Experimenting more to determine words that work and who responds to what.”
  • “Increased frequency in fewer places.”
  • “We set up a landing page and bought Google ad words specifically for potential Super Bowl clients. We ended up doing work for Visa, CBS, NBC, Playboy and the Komen Tissue Bank through the ads. Sweet!”
  • “Our focus has shifted to measuring the effectiveness of our social media activity in driving actual leads and not necessarily just traffic to our site or casual interest. In the end, closed deals are really the main reason for doing any of this, in my humble opinion.”
  • “Instead of having one person responsible for social media we are engaging all of our employees to spread the word through social media. “

So what trends are we seeing? To sum it up in a word: Focus. More people are taking social media seriously, devoting time and resources to the project outside of the odd intern. Interestingly, as social media is getting more focused on results, its execution is becoming more diffuse, with more members of an organization getting involved with the day-to-day tasks of running the accounts, contributing their own unique voices to the fray. We’re also seeing more people devoting their attention to one or two core networks instead of trying to shove mass amounts of content onto many different channels.

How will you approach social media this year?