No one will disagree with me when I say that social media is confusing, frustrating and overwhelming. In the last five years, it has become the main advertising platform for businesses, both big and small. As overwhelming as it may be, it is a huge asset to small businesses who might have difficulty advertising and marketing their brands otherwise. However, integrating social media into your small business is difficult and time consuming, and even when you do figure it out, it’s tough to do it right.
Here are a few local places that deserve a shout out for the awesome job they’re doing promoting their business using social media.
Urban Standard – Birmingham, Ala.
Urban Standard, a café and restaurant in downtown Birmingham, does a great job of promoting their business through social media. With more than 5,000 Twitter followers, nearly 4,000 Facebook fans, and 750 Instagram followers, Urban Standard has generated a large following and they make sure to utilize it. They post nearly once a day on all of their social media platforms, making sure everything they share is informative, short and personal. They also capture attention by posting creative pictures and links. Not to mention, they have great coffee. Props, Urban Standard. Keep up the good work!
The Blue Door Boutique – Columbus, Ga.
The Blue Door Boutique is a small clothing boutique in Columbus, Ga., but based on the amount of online presence they have, you’d think they were a national franchise. The Blue Door Boutique currently has more than 900,000 likes on Facebook, a huge growth considering they only had around 200,000 less than a year ago. BDB does an exemplary job of promoting their store online. Every morning, their new arrivals are posted at 11 a.m. Nearly every hour, they post pictures of their clothes on their Facebook page, and almost every post generates more than 500 likes. They send out “sneak peek” emails of their new arrivals numerous days of the week and post on Instagram daily. They are a true example of how promoting your business online can create major success.
The Hotel at Auburn University and Dixon Conference Center – Auburn, Ala.
Not many hotels do it like this one. AUHCC is a personal, friendly and classy place to stay if you’re ever visiting Auburn, and they do a great job of showing that through social media. They have Facebook and Instagram accounts, both of which they update almost daily with relevant information and creative pictures. But what I love about AUHCC is their Twitter page. They promote the hotel and the restaurants inside of it, but they also promote the surrounding community by sharing events and achievements in the area. Great job, AUHCC.
The Curious Fox – Opelika, Ala.
The Curious Fox is a new intimates and sundries boutique that recently opened in Opelika. For being a new business, they have created an awesome online presence using social media platforms like Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and even Rdio, a music service similar to Spotify that allows you to share playlists. The Curious Fox does a great job of engaging with their customers on a regular basis, and they always encourage people to stay connected by liking and following their other social media profiles. They also do a great job of promoting events in the community and letting all of their customers know what is going on at their store. If they keep up their social media practices, they’ll be established and comfortable in no time.
Whether you're a small business or a large corporation, social media is a great asset these days. The sooner you get your online profile established, the better off you'll be. Kudos to these businesses for utilizing social media in creative and smart ways. Keep up the good work.