You are probably sick of hearing about our small business social media survey by now. Don’t worry, I’m not going to ask you to take it. Instead, I want to share some wisdom from your fellow small business owners and employees. On our survey, we didn’t just ask quantitative questions, we also wanted to find out what tactics and strategies are working.  We asked open-ended questions and we got some great advice.

Here are our favorite answers to the question “Do you have any suggestions for small business owners just starting to incorporate social media in their marketing plan?”

  • “Have a plan. Don’t just do it because you think everyone else is. How can you use these different social media channels to help you reach your long and short term goals. And remember, no one is an expert.”
  • “Make [social media] part of your larger marketing strategy. Plan ahead for the big things and fill in with timely topics.”
  • “Think dialogue, not monologue. Don’t own the conversation, join it. Contribute relevant content that adds value to audience.”
  • “Identify your goals. What do you want to accomplish through your social media program? Once that’s identified, develop the program around the goals. And incorporate metrics into the plan, or don’t bother!”
  • “Know what you’re doing, and don’t pawn it off to some intern.”
  • “Start by writing a policy, unlike what I did.”
  • “Commit to regular activity. I challenge you to ‘prove’ to me that it won’t help your business.”
  • “Look for other small businesses who are doing what you’re attempting to do. Don’t try and reinvent the wheel! You can learn a great deal from their pitfalls. Then as the wheel turns, you can pay it forward for the next biz owner.”
  • “Each media works for different types of business. Take one at a time and work with it to check if it works for your business instead of spreading time over different social media.”

What advice do you have for other small businesses on social media?