Category: Media Tips & Tricks

Emergency Preparedness for restaurants

Preparing your restaurant business for the COVID-19 season.

Restaurants and tourism-based businesses around the world have been massively impacted by the spread of COVID-19. Travel restrictions and the effort to “Flatten the Curve” of the disease are crucial measures in saving lives.

In the meantime, business owners are in a place of uncertainty, and financial projections that anticipated a busy and fruitful 2020 season are now unknown.

Business owners in Maine and across the country are working quickly to mitigate the impact that the disease and the associated regulations are having on the industry. Many small businesses are seeking guidance on where to start with messaging and how to reach out to their communities.

Need a place to start? Take a look at the checklists and ideas below. They can help you get started as you make your plans.

Disclaimer: Use this information at your own risk. The below sample letter, information, and checklists are meant to provide information only to you and your team. They do not replace the advice and consultation of a legal team, nor the guidance from local state, and federal regulators. They do not guarantee accuracy or the most up-to-date information. You and your business are strongly advised to conduct your own research and consult your own legal teams for a review of any information that relates to your business, business communications, state and national protocols, your employees, and your suppliers. 

Checklist:

  • Review the most current CDC, DHHS & OSHA, WHO, and FDA guidelines regarding COVID-19 in the workplace and at home. News is changing daily. Stay abreast of what is happening from a reputable source.
  • Reach out to your insurance provider(s) and make sure you are aware of the policy limits of your coverage. Make sure to have your policy information in place for easy access.
  • Reach out to your legal team and worker’s compensation agents to discuss what is required of you as an employer in protecting your team and the public. 
  • Review food and restaurant safety and cleaning protocols at your restaurant. Discuss these with your team and document the steps you and your team take on a daily basis to keep up to code.
  • Develop a clear plan of action for your in-house team for emergency response. Make sure to put your health and safety guidelines in writing and review them with your team so that they are clear and actionable.
  • Ask employees who may feel sick to stay at home and seek medical care when indicated.
  • Consult with your local SCORE office for support in understanding what options may be available to you as a small business. They are at-the-ready with information from the SBA and your state regulators.
  • Get clear on what you can do financially in your business if you stay open, or if you decide to close. Talk to your financial team (Accountants/Financial Planners/Score Advisors) so that you have as clear-a-picture as possible of future projections. This can help you feel a measure of control and understanding – AND it can help you if you need to ask for support from your bank, SBA, or other investors.

Update your business:

  • Review and update your business hours on your website, Facebook, your Google-My-Business profile and any/all social media.
  • Post a letter to your guests regarding the measures you are taking to ensure that your business and your employees are following all local, state, and federal protocols. You should post this on your website, send it to your email list, and post it via Facebook. MAKE SURE that you have it posted on your website before you post it on social media or in an email newsletter. You will want to link back to your website URL for reference on your business updates.
  • Update those posts frequently.

Community Goodwill:

  • There are many kids who will miss out on school breakfast and lunch programs, and adults who cannot afford regular groceries due to reduced working hours. Consider donating your time and leftover food or meals to your local food bank or community support center. In Maine, the team at Full Plates, Full Potential is ready and willing to help you.
  • Consider donating any leftover food to your employees. Many of them will need to supplement their food budget.

Revenue-generating ideas:

  • Create offers like “Gift Card Sales” with small discounts (e.g. “Buy $100 GC for $90”), sidewalk pick-up of take-out food, etc. Post your offers to social media with links to your website.
  • Make it easy for guests to adjust reservations and offer up new dates if they cancel. Collect their emails when they call or cancel. Put them in your database for future news releases and specials.

Communication:


Sample communications letter to your community. 

The Structure of your outreach can look like this:

  1. Statement of Intention
  2. What we are doing to ensure we are following state and federal protocols.
  3. List what the customers can do to support your business
  4. Closure and contact information
  5. MOST IMPORTANT: Stick to the facts of what YOU and your team are doing to follow safety protocols as prescribed by state and federal regulations. Link to the CDC, FDA, DHHS, and the WHO. Do not add to this crisis by making promises or guarantees that you can’t legally/morally/ethically keep.

Your business will require its own distinct messaging based on your unique needs and guidance from your counsel and up-to-date information from your local and state representatives.

“Dear Restaurant Community,
We work hard to create a welcoming environment for our guests and our team. We are closely monitoring the rapidly changing situation around COVID-19. The health and well-being of our community are paramount, and we want to share what we are doing in this time of uncertainty.

What we are doing:

  • Monitoring the CDC, WHO, DHHS, and FDA guidance for the most up-to-date practices 
  • Upholding the highest standards of cleanliness and food safety in our facility and with our providers
  • Asking our team members to stay home when they are sick
  • Discouraging personal contact including shaking hands
  • Providing hand sanitizers and clean restroom facilities for our guests and team members
  • Frequent cleaning of surfaces and “high-touch” areas used by our guests and team members

What you can do:

  • Stay home if you are sick and follow the current state and federal guidelines around COVID-19. Call us to make a change to your reservation, as we are happy to accommodate you at a future date
  • Purchase a gift card for future use
  • Contact us for curbside take-out 

The well-being of our guests, staff, and community is our top priority. We value your support of our restaurant. Please stay in touch with us via our website and on our social media for the most recent updates. And of course, if you have any questions, please reach out to us at (xxx)-xxx-xxxx or info@mysamplebusiness.com.”

Reference and link to the CDC, OSHA & DHHS, the WHO, the FDA, and your state and regional administrations for business guidance and for up-to-date information.

Our goal is to support our community with suggestions and ideas to help “weather the storm.” Please make sure to consult your business partners and legal teams to plan for emergency communications and protocols.

Influencer Marketing

Want to know how to best-integrate Influencer marketing and content creation into your business? We sit down with Amy Welch-Olson of Capshore Photography for a video interview to discuss the ins-and-outs of this massively growing field of social media marketing.

Influencer Marketing Video Interview Show Notes | An Interview with Amy Welch-Olson of Capshore Photography.

These notes were directly developed from a talk crafted by Photographer & Creator Amy Welch-Olson to the Visit Portland Community in January 2020. These points are reflected in the interview with Kristin F. Simmons. 

“Hello, I’m Amy from Capshore Photography! I am excited to chat with you all today about what I have learned over the years as a content creator. 

There are SO many different opinions on the topic of influencers and social media. There is still a “Wild Wild West” feeling of no set rules, so today I am going to focus on my own experiences a content creator, and try to give you some insight from the other side of the camera. 

I’ve been a photographer for a long time and have been working as a content creator for several years with all sorts of different companies and brands like Visitmaine, Italiarail, and most recently VisitPortland

I thought the best way to approach this morning would be to give you an overview of the Top Questions that have come up over the last few years in my work. 

Social Media Influence Marketing Kristin Fuhrmann Simmons Digital Media

What’s the difference between a content creator and an influencer?

Content creators examples are photographers, videographers, and other professionals that create beautiful images/videos for a living. 

A. They sometimes have fewer followers than influencers but you’re not booking them for their followers, you’re booking them for their expertise in creating/curating stunning content. 

B. Influencers are typically micro-celebrities, vloggers, product reviewers and people who can affect and impact viewers. 

They typically have a bigger following than content creators and that’s the main reason you’re hiring them – not for their incredible images (although that can also sometimes exist) but for their ability to influence others to visit/purchase/follow your brand. 

People are MUCH more likely to trust someone they follow on Instagram when considering a purchase rather than a commercial/celebrity. 

When you hire a content creator you could get dozens of gorgeous images that you’ll be able to use on your website or social media accounts, which typically has a slower but markedly steadier impact. 

On the other hand, when you hire an influencer, you’ll have their followers paying attention to your account during the influencer’s visit. There is a faster initial impact on your social media channels, but there will be natural “drop-off” after the influencer finishes their contract work with you. 

What’s the value of investing in content creation/influencers? 

Potential clients and customers are significantly more influenced on social media than via traditional ads. Viewers (especially Millennials) typically plan their trips and purchases on social media. 

Social Media Influence Marketing Kristin Fuhrmann Simmons Digital Media

What’s the difference between content creation and a takeover? 

a. Content creation simply means copywriting, photography, and videography work that can be used by YOU, the client on your social media or websites.

 b. A “takeover” is content creation that the INFLUENCER then posts on your account for you during their stay/visit/tour etc. It gives viewers a more intimate experience of seeing what a weekend/trip might be like as it’s happening from the perspective of a 3rd party. This can be accomplished through stories, videos, writing, social posts, or a combination of all four! 

c. Influencers can also post on their own accounts and direct their followers to look at your brand via tags and links to your account. 

Social Media Influence Marketing Kristin Fuhrmann Simmons Digital Media

How do you find a great content creator/influencer? 

A. Ask around! If you’re a member of your local Chamber of Commerce, Visitor’s Bureau, or a State-Level Organization, ask who they have used for coverage. We highly encourage businesses to maximize their membership dues by working with their local and regional business organizations. 

B. You can also follow local accounts with beautiful imagery and reach out to the influencers directly. You can also ask if the influencer can recommend someone who they have worked with, or if they could recommend someone to work with you. REMEMBER – work with influencers who match the demographic you are trying to attract. Ask to see their stats and where their posts are being seen. 

C. You do NOT need to work with someone with thousands of followers. In fact, micro-influencers (10,000 followers or less) can have HUGE engagement and can help make a big impact with your local company. You want to make sure that their posts are being liked by people in your target market and feel free to ask for screenshots of their account analytics to verify that you are a match.

D. Who do you follow that you love or that are relevant to your business? Reach out to these influencers and see if they could help you.

E. We also recommend vetting an influencer via https://influencermarketinghub.com and looking at their reach, following, and the average rate of pay. It’s a free and easy-to-use tool for every business. You can plug in an influencer’s account to the calculator tool at https://influencermarketinghub.com/instagram-money-calculator/

Social Media Influence Marketing Kristin Fuhrmann Simmons Digital Media

How do you “pay for” content creators/influencers? 

A. It depends. Sometimes influencers and content creators will “trade” services for a press trip/weekend, or a free meal. Sometimes they will charge an hourly rate or a multi-day rate, and may also ask for accommodations/meals, etc. to be included. At a minimum, if you are making a trade, expect to comp everything. You may choose to ask the influencer to pay for any alcoholic beverages, but otherwise, cover food expenses. 

B. It’s important to be clear about what you are willing to offer/pay and what you will receive in return (deliverables). SPELL IT OUT in a contract and make sure you have a clear discussion with your collaborators before they begin work.

C. Honor the creative process. It takes time to develop stories and to edit photos and videos. THIS IS A PARTNERSHIP, so let the creative developer do what they do best, and rest easy knowing that you have spelled out your needs and goals in a clearly defined contract. 

Social Media Influence Marketing Kristin Fuhrmann Simmons Digital Media

What should you be thinking about in preparing for a content creator or influencer’s visit? 

A. You should generate ideas/opportunities/local tips for experiences to document. This can help give the influencer a good place to start.

B. Review what’s missing from your content/marketing materials and ask them to help fill in the holes.

C. What are you hoping to highlight about your business?  Get their creative input. 

D. Build-in downtime in their schedule so they have time to catch their breath and to accommodate for creative opportunities that may arise. 

E. Make introductions to a point person in your business or community so everyone knows what’s going on.

F. Deliverables/contracts – make sure you have this discussion beforehand about what you will give and get. Put it in writing. Be clear about what both agree upon as far as deliverables/returnables. This should include when will they arrive/leave? What is the trade/payment? What kind of access do you have to the images (exclusive rights)? When should you expect to get the images back? 

Social Media Influence Marketing Kristin Fuhrmann Simmons Digital Media

See Amy’s latest collaboration with Visit Portland here for a great example of an Instagram takeover.


Have you worked with an influencer or content creator?  We would love to hear from you. Tell us your tips or tricks and leave your questions below.

Reach out to Amy Welch-Olson at capshorephotography.com or on Instagram. She can consult with you about working directly as an Influencer and content creator, or she can provide custom development sessions with you so that you can build a strategy and dive into influencer marketing armed with all the information you need to make it a massive success. 

Social Media Trends Maine 200

Social Media Trends: Maine’s Bicentennial 2020

Maine’s 200th Birthday is well underway and businesses all across the great Pine Tree State are looking for ways to tap into the celebration as a marketing tool.

Here are 2 trends that can help you TODAY in making the most of this special event in your social media marketing.

Trend 1: Share UGC -User Generated Content & 3rd Party Links

What is UGC you may ask?

“User-generated content (UGC) is any content—text, videos, images, reviews, etc.—created by people, rather than brands. And brands will often share UGC on their own social media accounts, website, and other marketing channels.” Hootsuite

A good rule of thumb is to follow the 80/20 rule when using UGC and 3rd Party links for your content calendar.

It goes a little like this:

  • 80% of the content you share on your social media sites should come from other resources.
  • 20% of the content you share should be your original stories, photos, and videos.

Why you may ask? Well, it’s as easy as this: NO ONE likes to hear someone talk about themselves all-the-time.

There is also evidence to back this up. Sharing content from 3rd party sources and UGC:

  1. Builds trust and authority. Social Algorithms love when you are relevant, post current events, and are “shareable.”
  2. It serves your community with relevant and useful information.
  3. Clients LOVE LOVE LOVE to share their feelings and opinions.

Hear more from the team at Social Media Examiner about UGC and how it can benefit your business marketing.

So, now that you know about UGC & 3rd Party Links, where can you find things to share?

First, do an inventory of your social media feed and email inbox, and look for the following: client posts, comments, tagged photos, testimonials, emails, hand-written notes, etc. This is GOLD and you can share this in your feed WHEN you ask for permission from your clients.

Follow this rule: Make sure to give credit and celebrate the fact that your customers are acting as ambassadors.

It’s easy and here’s a sample:

 “We loved what you posted on Instagram.  We would like to share it with our users and give credit to you. Would you be comfortable if we shared it on our Facebook page? Please contact us at info@samplemaineresort.com” and then post away dear friends!

You can also share content from reliable 3rd party resources. These will help you to look like you are in-the-know (which you are dahling!) and will serve as resources to your clients and customers.

You can position yourself as the business who cares about sharing the best with their clients. And all you have to do is copy a URL link, add a note, and ask for comments…and then voilà! Your audience engagement increases.

Great places to find content to share about Maine’s Bicentennial 2020:

  • Maine Public has a HOST of resources including its daily series called, “On this day in Maine,” as well as radio shows, interviews, stories, and links to the Maine Archives. Find out more here.
  • The Maine Office of Tourism has an MOT Partners Website with a WEALTH of information on upcoming events, as well as resources like photo downloads, links to regional websites, a community calendar and more. Find out more here.
  • Maine200.org is the HUB of all Maine events related to the Bicentennial. Here you will find out how to submit our own event, links to Bicentennial products for sale, and a bounty of Maine Stories. Find out more here.
Visit the Maine200.org website for a comprehensive resource guide.

Trend 2: LIVE Video

You have heard it over and over again: LIVE video is taking over the internet. It is estimated that by 2022, 85% of all content on social media will be video content.

Read more at Social Media Examiner on “3 Ways to use live Video for your Small Business.”

Video content is KING on the internet. Why should you use it?

  • Our clients LOVE video when our content is of service to THEM and when it helps to extend the customer experience.
  • Video boosts your ability to be seen in social feeds by both your current audience and potential customers.
  • All you need is your iPhone & a tripod. (Trust me, your hands are NOT that steady.)

Easy ideas to share on video for Maine’s Bicentennial 2020:

  1. Why do you love living and working in Maine?
  2. Fun Facts about Maine’s History.
  3. Short tours of the services you provide.

Step 1 – Take a class. (Yes, I teach this class – and I think its really valuable.) I am also a die-hard believer in hands-on practice and a supportive community when it comes to practicing and mastering Live videos.

Sign-up for the 2/12/2020 workshop in Portland, Maine here. This course is a primer on how to use Facebook and IG Live for your social media marketing.

Step 2 – Watch other people’s live videos and learn what you like (and what you don’t). I watched hundreds of videos and I realized that I like short-and-sweet tours and heartfelt testimonials. I also took a media training course and IT CHANGED MY LIFE.

Here’s a quick video I did about the Rockland Breakwater in Rockland, Maine. You will see that it is HOMEMADE and all it took was my iPhone and my courage to get out there and do it.

Have you been to the Breakwater Lighthouse here in Rockland, Maine? It’s the perfect day here in #mainesmidcoast . This region is the heart of Maine’s Art scene and he inspired generations of painters, sculptors, and photographers. The Breakwater is the perfect place to enjoy the sweeping views of the Penobscot Bay. #visitmaine #rocklandmaine #hosted Penobscot Bay Regional Chamber of Commerce Visit Camden-Rockland, Maine

Posted by Kristin Fuhrmann Simmons on Monday, May 6, 2019
You TOO can make videos that your guests and customers find valuable, shareable, and fun!

When you are ready to take your video marketing to the next level, (think news-worthy segments and beautifully shot and edited spots) it is worth your time and energy to work with a film and video production professional who can help you put your best foot forward.

I love the Tips & Tricks from the Burdo Media Group. Find out more about her here and sign up for her Newsletters. Her actionable tips are great for everyday use AND in planning out more formal, high-level videos.

For professional video series production, custom video creation, and presentation development, contact Michelle Burdo of Burdo Media Group

Let us know how you are marketing for Maine’s Bicentennial 2020. We would love to hear your ideas!

Want to stay in touch and stay up-to-date on current posts & workshops?  Sign up here.

Follow us on Instagram and Facebook.

Header Image “Maine 200 Leading the Way” is courtesy of Maine200.org

Belize Digital Media Summit Materials and Presentations 2019

Attention Belize Digital Media Summit Attendees! 

Here are the materials by Kristin F. Simmons for the Belize Digital Summit | July 19, 2019. 

For more information about the seminar and to sign up: BELIZE DIGITAL SUMMIT.

~

Remember: Our goal is to help you feel confident, competent, and creative online.

Sign up for our email list, LIKE us on Facebook, and follow us on Instagram, and Twitter.

Scroll down for the materials.

Belize DIgital Summit 2019 Kristin F. Simmons Social Media Tips and Tricks
Kristin's workshop helped me navigate the new Instagram technology in a matter of minutes. Saving time, enhancing my online profile and engaging my followers...could not ask for a better return on investment!
Lana Wescott
Lana Wescott Events

Kristin F. Simmons, Digital Media and Visual Storytelling is dedicated to making the process of marketing outreach one that is in alignment with who you are and what you love about your business.

Reach out for a consultation, 1-to-1 or group training, or social media management services.  

Special rates, services and in-kind trades are available for businesses in Belize.

 

All materials enclosed are the property of Kristin Fuhrmann-Simmons| Kristin F. Simons Digital Media.  They cannot be reproduced, sold, or distributed without consent. Send inquiries to Kristin.f.simmons@gmail.com

Business on Social Media

How to share your tourism destination on Social Media.


What is the best way to share your business on social media? I don’t know about you, but when I lay in bed at night, scrolling through my iPad, searching for the next latest-and-greatest place I want to visit, I tend to stop and linger at pretty pictures and videos or real people doing fun and engaging things.

I am not alone in this.

Over 45% of the world’s total population are on social media, spending on average, 2.5 hours per day on social networks and in messaging apps.* (Hootsuite, 2019)

Social media users love travel photos and destinations profiles.

Travelers want what is REAL and RELEVANT. They want to be shown what it would truly be like to travel to a destination, and what to expect along the way. Travelers want to connect with the EMOTION of the experience, long before they step foot in the hotel lobby, or get in their car to the airport.

How can YOU, dear gentle business owner, benefit from this knowledge and cater your social media marketing to potential tourism and hospitality customers?


It’s as simple as 1-2-3 to market your Tourism and Hospitality Business on Social Media.


1.PLAN AHEAD

I promise you, your marketing outreach will be SO much easier if you do a bit of planning ahead. You KNOW that the “spray and pray” method of throwing up a social post here and there does not work. It is ineffective and causes social media burnout. It makes you question, “Why am I doing this at all?”

A little creative brainstorm and a quick run-down list can make all the difference in your staying power on social media.

Download the Quick Draft Post Calendar here and follow these steps:

Jot down the answers to the following questions: (Sample Business Draft for the purpose of demonstration: Fairwinds Coastal Resort in New England)

What do we share for sales and specials for our Tourism and Hospitality Business? Pre-Memorial Day 40% for stays more than 2 nights; 25% off stays in June or July of 7+ continuous days.

What can we post seasonally? Staff profiles; Photos of rooms types; Wedding events; On-site and off-site catering

What special events, including charity events do we do? Our Local Brews & BBQ Weekend; Our Kids Fairy Festival in May; Our Lobster Roll Festival in August

What are some behind-the-scenes parts of our business we can share? Set up for a wedding; Opening of the pool; Videos of the chef prepping in the kitchen.

Then, fill in your month of social media posts ideas:

Week 1: Share photos of the past Local Brews & BBQ Events with a link to ticket sales; Share a series of photos from a couple who were married on the property with a link to the sales team phone number.

Week 2: Share our seasonal sales specials with a direct link to our booking page; share photos to the property to get people exciting about the upcoming season.

Week 3: Share photos and brief bios of the staff. Share photos of the newly refurbished rooms with link to booking page.

Week 4: Post photos of the Fairy Festival with links to the gift shop and our collection of fairy house books; Share photos of our chef making lobster rolls and ask guest to share their photos of when they ate lobster rolls on property.

One of my favorite quotes: “Chance favors the the prepared mind.” The same goes for YOU and your social media planning. The better the outline and plan, the better your chance of reaching your marketing your goals.

Credit -Louis Pasteur

2. SHARE USER GENERATED CONTENT

Guess what? You don’t have to do all the work. That’s right, you heard me!

You can look up what people have posted about their stay, and then SHARE that on your social media. In fact, this is a GREAT way to fill up your social media posts as both a regular part of your weekly plan AND when you are feeling that low-motivating-oh-dear-I-feel-so-uncreative-kinds-mood.

Here’s what you need to know:

YOU MUST get permission. YOU MUST credit the photo and/or source link that you repost. As a business owner, you need to follow the ethical guidelines set forth by all-that-is-respectful in the world.

Share what is referred to as “User Generated Content” in your social media posts. Make sure to give credit and celebrate the fact that your customers are acting as ambassadors. It’s easy and it looks like this:

Sample outreach to client —-

“We loved what you posted on Facebook. We are so happy you enjoyed your stay. We would like to share it with our users and credit you and your account.  Would you be comfortable if we shared it on our Facebook page? Please contact us at info@fairwindscoastalresort.com.” And then post away dear friends!

3. Be of SERVICE

Let’s face it: The WHOLE point of social media is to be of service.

Before the sales, before the song-and-dance, we are here to be of SERVICE and to help our clients.

Ask yourself this question: Is what I am posting online helpful? Does it help my clients see the full range of services that we offer?  Does it help them make a decision about booking with us?

To put it another way, are you walking into the room and using a bullhorn to brag about your business and then walking away? Or are you purposefully asking questions, introducing yourself, and listening to what is going on? If its the latter of the two, then you are being of service.

Everything you post for your business on social media should be planned and purposeful, providing both future clients and return guests a chance to share and shine.

Have any questions or need further help?  Like us on Facebook and Instagram and subscribe to our email list to follow along for the latest updates and classes. Our goal? To help you feel confident, competent, and creative online.

A very special thanks to Cait Bourgault for her photo at Cafe Miranda in Rockland, Maine, and to the Sebasco Harbor Resort for hosting me for a wonderful press trip.

5 Tips for Amazing Social Media Posts

5 Tips for Amazing Social Media Posts.

I have a great solution for you when it comes to what to post on social media.

We ALL — and I MEAN WE ALL have times when the words don’t flow as easily from our fingertips as we had hoped; or we have impostor syndrome and we don’t think we are good writers; or we just don’t feel like posting..and blah blah blah.

5 tips for Amazing Social Media Posts What to Post on Social media with Kristin Fuhrmann Simmons

I get it.

I fall back on this simple formula of 5 Tips for Amazing Social Posts ALL-THE-TIME. It helps me to stay focused and get creative even when I feel as juicy and exciting as a piece of cardboard.

These steps help me to stay-on-task as a business owner who uses social media as one of my primary marketing tools. It is crucial that my posts be purposeful and a means-to-an-end, whether it be feel-good branding or targeted sales. (The “Spray-and-pray-haphazard-method of social media posting is a sure-fire way to burn out and lose, rather than engage, an audience.

5 tips for Amazing Social Media Posts What to Post on Social media with Kristin Fuhrmann Simmons

I remember the mantra: “All you need is already within you. You are creative and powerful” and then I take these steps:

5 Tips for Amazing Social Media Posts

  1. ENGAGE

    Start with a hook in the form of a question or quote.

  2. INFORM

    Share your personal perspective and expertise.

  3. SHOW

    Add great photos or video to bring your posts to life.

  4. LINK

    Include a link to your business/booking page.

  5. INVITE

    Ask your followers to share & comment.

Formulas help me know that I am on-task and on-target in my business goals, and this outline does the trick.

I invite my community in by asking a question; I share myself, which is an important part of my connection to my customers; I show a photo or video because I know this is part of getting good visibility; I make sure to link back to my business; I invite them to share and be part of the conversation.

For example:

Have you ever driven a vintage truck? (Tip 1)

I drive an old Ford F150 all through college that I bought for $500 cash. I called it “Beatrice” because it meant “blessed.” That’s the way I felt in that old truck and I loved it. (Tip 2)

You can see all of the vintage truck we have on our lot here: ArundelFord.com  (Tip 4)

Did you ever drive a vintage F150? Do you have a photo? We would love to have you share it in the feed below. (And let us know if you had a name for it!) (Tip 5)

And make sure to jump back to Tip 3 to share a photo with every post you do. It doubles your engagement!

Do you have a post formula you like to use? You can download my mantra and my 5 Tip Outline here for your desktop when you sign up for my mailing list. CLICK HERE. I don’t spam or sell your information ever.

Let me know your tips and tricks for great posts on the Facebook Page.

Happy Posting!

A special thanks to the team at Arundel Ford for letting me share one of their posts. They are incredible clients I Iove helping them tell their stories on social media.

Ask a Question: What to Post on Social Media for Small Businesses?


Do you ever wonder what talk about  on social media? Do you get excited to use social media for your marketing, but then lose steam after a few posts and then give up?

I hear you.

We have all been there. The stops. The starts. The lack of feeling creative. The need to take care of EVERYTHING else in your business and Social Media becomes ONE-MORE-THING you need to juggle.

Fret not, fellow business friend. I am here to help. I have a full-proof tip to share with you, so that you know what to post on social media.

Kristin Fuhrmann Simmons Social Media Tips and Tricks What to post on Social Media Desk with Social Media and Connection Concept

Here it is: ASK A QUESTION OF YOUR AUDIENCE

 

Yes. THAT is what you should talk about on social media for your small business.

You should ASK A QUESTION of your community, the likes of which YOU are asked all of the time. As business owners, we solve problems everyday and answer questions.

Some juicy and/or mundane examples may be:

What kinds of service do you offer on old cars? Can you mail a package to Borneo? Do you offer small party catering? What time is your 3 o’clock seminar? Can you hem pants AND dry-clean clothes? Do you have evening hours?  How much for drop-in child care?  Do you allow dogs in your hotel?

You get the calls. You read your emails. You have the lady that wants to hang out, chit-chat, and then pepper you with questions about pairing wines and cooking for 20 people at the holidays. You know the drill and you answer these kinds of business questions EVERYDAY.

Guess what folks? These questions are AMAZING fodder for social media posts.

Ask a Question: What to post for small business on social media Kristin F Simmons
Click Through for a step-by-step video on “How to Ask Questions of your Audience on Social Media.”

Now that you know WHAT to do, it’s time to take action and get posting on social media.

 

Take a look at the steps below, and download a brainstorming guide to help get the juices flowing.

Grab a piece of paper or download the worksheets below. Write down at least 5 questions you are asked everyday in your business.

Remember: All social media posts need to have an image or video attached to them to be the MOST engaging to your audience.

When you look at the most commonly asked questions, feel free to provide an answer directly in the post, or leave it open ended for your community to respond. Here is an example: “Have you ever come to on of our yoga classes? We would love to hear feedback from you!” or “We are asked if we fix older models of cars in our shop all the time. Here are some photos of the antique autos we have repaired. Have you seen them on the road? Share your antique auto photos below or call us for a repair at 555-1212.”

Kristin Fuhrmann Simmons Ask A questions What to post on Social Media

Make sure to ask in a way that encourages a response. Our social media business posts are seen on average by 2-5% of our TOTAL audience. Up-the-ante by creating a “Ask a Question” post and over time, you can improve your visibility ten-fold.

Use this as an opportunity to connect with your community. The more you respond, the stronger the connection between you and your clients. (AND, the more comments and feedback, the better your posts perform, and are shared with a wider audience.)

Get your staff in on the social media action. A good group brainstorm helps to engage your team IN REAL LIFE. Everyone loves to participate and feel like they can contribute.

WORKSHEET PDF TO DOWNLOAD

If you get a customer with a legitimate concern, offer to take the conversation offline and provide a direct phone # for them to call.
If they get nasty, inappropriate and/or abusive, delete it and/or block them. We WILL get concerns and comments. There is NEVER a call for abuse or snarkiness.

So, when you wonder: “What do I post on social media for my small business?” you NOW know what to do.

Remember: My goal is to help you feel CONFIDENT, COMPETENT, & CREATIVE online.

Share your comments below an on my Facebook Page at Kristin F. Simmons Digtal Media | Visual Storyteller. Make sure to keep these worksheets on-hand as a reference and LET ME KNOW how its going.

Need help with planning and execution of social media? I can do that. See my services here. I look forward to hearing from you!

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Get Organized & Ready for 2019: Social Media Consulting for the New Year







Get Organized and Ready for 2019: Social Media Consulting & Instruction.

Are you in need of a social media boost for 2019? 

Do you want to get in-depth, personalized training on Facebook, Instagram, Linkedin, Twitter, or Pinterest for your business? 

Do you need step-by-step instructions and a clear path ahead on how to BEST use social media for your business?

Then this is the package for you!

Social Media Training and Classes with Kristin F. Simmons Digital Media Maine

At Kristin F. Simmons, my goal is to help you feel competent, confident, and creative in your social media marketing.

It is my goal to help you get the most from your marketing outreach and maximize your engagement through connected, relevant, and engaging stories.

Social Media Marketing is cost effective – especially when you know how to use it and use it WELL!

The HOLIDAY Package includes:

  1. A 2-hour, custom, one-on-one lesson on the social media platform of your choice.
  2. A comprehensive review of ONE of your social media accounts and a personalized, detailed recommendations for improvement and how to best maintain and use your social media accounts. (Consistency is KEY to mastering social media for business!)
  3. A Detailed 3-Month Editorial Calendar with daily, weekly and monthly post planning to help you reach your 2019 Business goals.
  4. A 1-hour post training follow-up Skype call to review best practices and troubleshoot.
  5. BONUS! Three custom designed photo & graphics posts to use on your social media platforms.

Regular price: $1,500
HOLIDAY SALE PRICE: $799 

Only 5 packages are available until they are sold out for the season!

Email more for more information: kristin.f.simmons@gmail.com


Terms: All sales final. Maine State Sales Tax included. Buyer must send phone and email address to Kristin F. Simmons at kristin.f.simmons@gmail.com to schedule trainings. Payment must be made via PayPal. All initial trainings must be complete by June 1, 2019. 

Questions about the package and what can best serve your needs? Please reach out to me at kristin.f.simmons@gmail.com

I am here to help you be your BEST on social media.

Remember: My goal is to help you feel the “Three C’s: Competent; Confident; Creative.”

Happy Holidays and MY BEST to you!

-Kristin Fuhrmann-Simmons
kristinsimmons.com

Social Media For Business training and Classes with Kristin Fuhrmann Simmons
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