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Small Businesses that Rock Social Media

Brands good at social media

From brand awareness to storytelling, social media is a powerful way to engage customers, explore untapped markets and build brand loyalty. And the best news is it doesn’t take a six figure marketing budget to cultivate a wining social media campaign.

If you’re a small business owner looking to develop an effective social media presence, you’ll want to read. We’ll reveal four small businesses that are capitalizing on the social media explosion, and show you how you can too.

1. Legendary Whitetails

Founded in 1999, family owned Legendary Whitetails sells “lifestyle apparel, gifts, and gear for white-tailed deer hunters and their families.”

The company’s Facebook page speaks directly to its audience, and they’re certainly listening. Currently they’re running a “One Million Fan Event” that offers prizes every 10,000 Likes until they reach their goal. Engaging posts that ask viewers to “name this buck,” and prove why they are #legendary keep fans coming back for more. We’re also impressed with Legendary Whitetails YouTube account that not only entertains but educates the viewer with hunting tips from experts in the field.

What They’re Doing Right: Legendary Whitetails does an outstanding job of using social media to build a bond between brand and audience. Along the way they’re growing a family like community that’s sure to gain them generations of loyal customers. Legendary Whitetails’ social media resonates with its target audience; learn how to converse with your consumer and create a social media strategy that does so time and again.

2. Blue Bottle Coffee

Oakland, California based coffee roaster and retailer Blue Bottle Coffee Company has received $45 million in funding and is generating amazing press. Intrigued? So were we.

One reason the coffee company is making major headway in a crowded niche may be thanks to its creative use of social media. From its hand-drawn style images on Instagram to videos that offer a peek into the company’s culture, Blue Bottle Coffee presents a cohesive brand identity across all social media outlets.

An important element of Blue Bottle Coffee’s success is educating the consumer. The company’s popular brewing guides feature eye catching imagery supported by easy to understand directions that can make a barista out anyone. Plus, the caffeine loving team uses Twitter to announce free specialty coffee making lessons at their retail stores.

What They’re Doing Right: Rather than using social media to “push” their product, Blue Bottle Coffee uses a variety of social media outlets to quietly but effectively reinforce brand identity and educate their audience. No matter what industry you’re in, you can set your business apart from the competition by using social media to strengthen your brand and show off short how-to’s that educate your audience.

3. Sevenly

Sevenly launched just three years ago, but the site for social causes has already raised nearly $4 million in crowdfunding and touched the lives of one million people around the world.

While some organizations have a strong presence on one or two social media platforms, cause-oriented clothing brand Sevenly takes full advantage of several outlets including InstagramTumblr, and YouTube to tout its campaign of the week and challenge its viewers to support the cause through purchasing Sevenly products. The Sevenly Pinterest page is full of endearing and inspirational stories that motivate the viewer to take action. Sevenly also distinguishes itself from similar organizations in that it gives virtual kudos to “competitor” companies that also support charities.

What They’re Doing Right: Sevenly does a first-rate job of storytelling across a number of outlets, and as a result they have effectively raised social awareness and loads of cash. And Sevenly isn’t afraid of giving shout outs to companies with similar missions. When crafting your social media campaign, engage your audience on a handful of platforms rather than limiting engagement to the biggies like Facebook and Twitter. And keep in mind that collaborating with complementary business could reward you with a higher engagement rate.

4. Plated

From culinary gurus to busy moms and dads, everyone can appreciate Plated’s mouthwatering business model. Every week Plated sends all the ingredients you need to make one of their chef inspired recipes right to your front door.

There’s a lot that Plated gets right when it comes crafting an engaging social media strategy that’s totally in tune with its target audience, like posting dynamic visuals, sparking community challenges, and boasting a comprehensive Pinterest page. But its consumer-centric strategy is what really makes Plated’s social approach shine. Plated not only asks for fan feedback and suggestions, the food focused company also starts Facebook discussions that get people talking about their food related preferences and opinions. For example, a simple question such as “What are you making for dinner tonight?” sparks major conversations that offer insight into its customers’ personas.

What They’re Doing Right: Plated uses social media to embrace the consumer and to position itself as a lifestyle brand. In doing so, Plated gains critical insights into its target audience’s likes and dislikes and its wants and needs. Don’t hesitate to use social media to ask questions that encourage conversation and get consumers talking about their preferences.

When mapping out your social media approach, remember that everything from the images you post to Instagram to the Boards you create on Pinterest can be used to build a bond with your target, develop and reinforce your brand identity, tell an important story, and gain insight into your audience. Use the tips offered by these four socially savvy businesses as a starting point and you’ll be well on your way to exploiting the potential of social media.

Alexia Chianis

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