The launch of a new social media profile for your small business is always exciting! You may be launching your new social media profile because you are starting a new business, or because you have (finally) decided to utilize social media for your existing business, or because you are simply adding an additional social media platform to your online marketing mix. After you claim a branded username and create a new account on your social media platform of choice, what kinds of things do you need to get set up on that social media platform before you introduce it to the world?
Let’s take a look.
What you Need for your New Social Media Account before Launching It
Regardless of the specific social media platform, you’ll definitely need these 4 things:
- Branded Username One of the first steps in creating a new social media account for your business requires you to select a username for your profile. Make sure you select a username that represents your brand. Ideally, the username would match other usernames on other profiles that you have set up.
- Branded imagery For most social media platforms, this includes both a profile photo (typically needs to be a square image even if shown in a circle) and a cover photo. Currently, Instagram and Pinterest do not have a cover photo, but Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+/Google My Business, and YouTube all do. (Note: Pinterest allows you to showcase recent pins or pins from a specific board in the cover photo area, but you do not upload a specific image to serve as your cover photo).
- Keyword-rich bio Your social media bio area is what Google crawls and indexes, so make sure each bio has a keyword-rich description of what your business sells and who it serves. If hashtags are an important part of a platform, include them in your bio. And of course, add your website link to every social media profile you have.
- Initial posts When you do (eventually) announce your new social media profile to the world, you don’t want people to check you out and see a bare feed. Publish at least 5 posts to your new social media profile. These initial social posts will likely be about your business and should serve as a good introduction into what you offer and who you work with.
In addition to the 4 ‘must haves’ for all social media profiles listed above, let’s look at the essentials for each specific social media platform.
What you Need before Launching Facebook
- Write your Facebook “Our Story”
- Complete additional About fields included on your Page
- Create and link a Facebook Group to your Page (if you plan to use a Group as part of your marketing strategy)
- Create a welcome video, publish it, and designate it as the Featured Video on your Page
- Create and optimize a few Video Library playlists. You can always create more lists later.
- Add and publish Services on your Facebook Services Tab.
- Add and publish products to your Facebook Shop.
- Write an Impressum if it’s needed for your business (This is often utilized for medical and legal practices and for any Page or business that needs to provide a disclosure)
- Setup your Facebook pixel on your website + some initial custom audiences
- Verify your Facebook Page
What you Need before Launching Twitter
- Setup a few Twitter lists. You can have public or private lists.
- Follow key accounts. This will help populate your Twitter feed with initial tweets for you to interact with. You will need to follow accounts that make sense for your Twitter marketing plan, but they may include industry news sources, local news stations and related local business accounts, customers, vendors, etc.
What you Need before Launching Pinterest
- Create at least 5 boards and populate those boards with at least 5 pins each
- Give each board a keyword-rich title and description, and set the board type and the cover photo
- Follow at least 5 topics and 5 accounts to get some initial pins in your feed
- Do some hashtag research so you can have a list of relevant hashtags to put to use right away for future pins. Hashtags can help people find your pinned content without following your first.
What you Need before Launching Instagram
- Add some emojis to your bio!
- Setup Linktree to make better use out of the 1 link you get to have in your Instagram bio
- Publish a few images to your Stories so you can add them to a Highlight. Make that Highlight be something about your business, products/services, or your blog. You can always add more Highlights to your profile later on.
- Follow a handful of accounts and a few hashtags, too. This will give you some initial content in your feed.
- Do some hashtag research so you can have a list of relevant hashtags to put to use right away
What you Need before Launching LinkedIn
- At a minimum, write your LinkedIn Headline and Summary. Also, it’s best to put some basic info in the Experience section of your LinkedIn Profile. Ideally, you’ll want to take advantage of the many Profile sections that LinkedIn offers so as to best highlight your accomplishments, but your headline and summary are the most critical as far as LinkedIn search is concerned.
- Upload your email list to be prepared to connect with existing contacts
- Set up your LinkedIn retargeting pixel on your website. Then setup at least 1 LinkedIn custom audience.
What you Need before Launching YouTube
- Create a welcome video, publish it, and designate it as the Featured Video on your Channel
- Create and optimize a few playlists. You can always create more lists later.
- Create a plan for your YouTube video descriptions. Your video title and description are important for search and ranking on YouTube.
- Research your YouTube tags and make a list of the main ones you know you’ll use. Of course, you will add video topic-specific tags to each video in addition to the general tags.
- Familiarize yourself with end screens and designating YouTube Playlists
What you Need before Launching Google My Business
- Verify your Google My Business listing
- Take and post photos of your place of business and some of your most popular products to your listing
- Plan to post photos + a new Google Post every week
First impressions matter in business and life. Make sure you set yourself up for social media success by getting your social media profiles in order before you announce them to your customers and the online world.