Insightly Insider presents: Simple Social Media Tips To Help You Build Your Following From Scratch


As a small business owner, it's of the utmost importance to make people aware of your brand. One of the best ways to spread the word about your business in 2017 is by being active on social media.

Despite its huge, well-known potential, more than 34% of small businesses in the U.S. admit to not having a social media presence.

When used strategically, social media can become a vital part of your marketing and sales strategy; winning you valuable new customers and boosting your bottom line.

At Expert Market, we use social media every day to send high volumes of traffic to our website. These visits create opportunities for our sales team to close exciting new deals for our business.

In this post, I will share with you the tried and tested methods that I use to get hundreds of new social media followers every month.


Part One - Create a schedule and stick to it

A major mistake that many small businesses make is that they don’t post regularly enough on social media to be seen by their customers.

Neil Patel, one of the industry’s leading experts, recently said: “If you post too infrequently, your audience will forget that you exist and you will quickly fade into the deep dark recesses of their minds.”

Harsh, but true.

Consider the current social media landscape. The average person in 2017 will spend around 40 minutes on social media every day. In that time, they’ll see posts from close friends, family, breaking news stories and, if you’re lucky, your post.

A surefire way to cut through the noise is to post regularly. By sticking to a schedule, your brand awareness will go up and you’ll leave your audience with a reason to come back to your profile. Over time, users will anticipate your posts which makes it easier to build an engaged audience.

PRO TIP: Make it your goal to post once a day on all of your social media platforms. Post every day for a month and then assess the results using a free analytics tool.

When you’ve finished your experiment, you’ll learn which platforms are the most valuable to your business and where to focus your energies in the future.


Part Two - Save hours of time and hassle with free tools

Keeping up with your social media activity can feel like a challenge when you’ve got a lot on your plate. Thankfully, that’s where social media management and analytics tools come into play.

Smart businesses rely on the help of free tools to do everything from auto engage with influencers to schedule their posts in advance. Automating aspects of your social media activity will help you to gain momentum and quickly grow your following. If you’re stuck on where to start, Inc. magazine recently wrote a great article on seven free tools that will shave hours off your social media management.

PRO TIP: Schedule your social media posts in advance.

Hootsuite is a great choice for small businesses because it takes ten minutes or less to set up, is free for up to three profiles, and is easy to use.


Part Three - Get the help of experts

A perk of living in our digital age is that it’s easy to get the help of experts. Fiverr, Upwork and PeoplePerHour are freelancer hubs that are free to sign up to and connect businesses with more than 10,000 trained professionals.

Whether you need designs created for your latest Instagram campaign, or you’re looking for a social media expert to take over and manage your profiles for the month, you’re sure to find someone to get the job done. Working with freelancers is a great way for small teams to stretch their marketing budget and get superb value for money.

PRO TIP: Build a lasting relationship with your freelancers.

Don’t just pay once for an odd job and let the relationship cool off. Having a “go-to” freelancer in your pocket who really knows your brand will save you hours of work down the line that would have otherwise been spent briefing someone new.

My top tip for cultivating a strong relationship with a freelancer is to be generous with praise. If they’ve done a good job - tell them! Freelancers rely on positive reviews to win jobs, so by leaving them a well thought out review on their profile you’ll be doing them a service. Nine times out of 10 freelancers will be more likely to work with you again in the future too if you’ve been courteous, so it’s important not to burn any bridges.



To sum it up, the value of small businesses being active on social media lays in its massive user base. Around the world there are more than 2.3 billion active monthly users on social media waiting to be wowed and captivated by your brand.

To win the hearts and minds of users, make sure to follow these simple, proven tips:

  • Create a social sharing schedule and stick to it. Aim for at least one post per day across all of your accounts.
  • Use free social media management and analytics tools to automate your workflow and shave hours off your time spent on social media.
  • Schedule your posts in advance using a free tool such as Hootsuite, so that when life gets in the way you know your posts will be delivered on time.
  • Hire freelancers to help you make your content amazing. Services like PeoplePerHour and Upwork connect you with trained professionals who can help you with everything from photography to engagement and hashtag research.

My final piece of advice is to be patient. If you create a schedule and stick to it every day, then the results will follow. Don’t fall into the trap of quitting your efforts when you’ve only just begun.


Make sure you don't miss out on discussions like this in the future by subscribing to our Insightly Insider series page with the "Follow" feature.



  • How do I sign up for this live Q&A?

  • I would like to sign up too. Where is the link to reserve a space?

  • 'To participate, just sign in to our Help Center or create a Help Center account if this is your first time here. And if you’re unable to attend during this time frame, no worries! This discussion page along with the Q&A will remain in the Community so you can reference it at a later date.' At bottom of email.

  • Hi Lynn and Elizabeth,

    The Discussion itself will take place in this thread at 9 AM PDT on June 22nd, 2017.  To join in, simply check back on this page then, and you should be all set! :)

  • I have logged in to the Help Center. Now what? The email says to "add questions/comments". Where? On what topic?  Create a New Topic ?  Or by posting this is that all I need to do???

  • Will there be a presentation or just a Q&A as we are doing right now?

  • Hi James and Craig,

    For an example of how the Insider discussions work, check out one of our previous Insider events : Managing for Exceptional Service - 5 Skills Your Team Needs Now to Create Strong Customer Connections

    Essentially, we'll post an article that the presenter has written, and then field questions through a live Q&A.  On the day of the event, you can ask questions directly to the presenter, and she'll answer them in this thread. :)

  • I will attend though may be a bit late in joining. I have a social presence and find generating 'activity' on Twitter much easier than Facebook. I am in the service business vs. selling a product. Any tips?

  • Hi everyone! We’ll be starting our Insightly Insider event at 9:00 AM PT, in approximately 10 minutes :-)

    We’ll be posting Karla’s article, “Simple Social Media Tips to Help Build Your Following from Scratch”, throughout the hour, and she’ll be with us LIVE to take your questions. Please make sure you can log into our Help Center in advance of the discussion (you’ll need to be logged in to post a question or leave a comment for Karla). See you soon!

  • Welcome to our June Insightly Insider online discussion! Today’s guest host is Karla McDougall, a content and social media marketer at Expert Market in London. She’ll be live with us throughout the hour, sharing some of her best tips and tricks, and taking your social media questions.

    Hi Karla - thank you so much for being with us today! :-)

  • Hi guys! Really happy to be here with you all today. 

  • I am signed in and on this link but cannot see any presentation.

  • Hi folks! Karla’s introduction has been posted! And as a reminder, Karla is live with us for the next hour or so, so don’t be shy! You can post your questions here for her :-)

  • I'm logged in and still can't find a link.


  • Hi John and Brad - thanks so much for joining us! This is a live discussion that happens right here on this page (there is no webinar or video). We're updating the article above every few minutes, so you may need to refresh your page to see the latest. And I'll update you here in the comments when a new section has been added. 

  • Hi Melissa, thanks for your comment! 
    Getting engagement on Facebook as a B2B business can seem tricky at first but my top tip is to remember that your "following" consists of real people with real interests.
    So, if you can find out what those are (e.g. basketball, tech gadgets, etc.) and post content relating to those topics it'll really help with your engagement and make your page less "salesy" which is key on Facebook. Hope that helps! 
  • Hello, 

    Do you have any tips for the frequency of which to post to twitter/instagram/linkedin? 

  • Logged in and can not find a link 

  • Hi Stephanie - thanks for joining us today!

    It really depends, but I'd say a golden rule for Facebook and LinkedIn is to post once per day and aim to post twice per day on Instagram. 

  • Hi Leticia! So glad you could join us today :-)

    This is a live discussion, rather than a webinar, so we'll be updating the article with new sections above every so often (I'll also comment here when a new section is added). You may need to refresh to see the latest section, and/or the latest questions and answers in the comments. 

    I hope that helps!



  • I am logged in and cannot find a link or a presentation.


  • Stephanie, Forbes published a really good piece on this exact topic recently which you could check out for more info.

    Here's the link:

  • Hi there Edith - so glad you could make it today!

    This is actually a live discussion, not a presentation, so we'll be updating the article above with new sections every few minutes or so. You may need to refresh your page to see the latest update (as well as the new questions, and Karla's answers).

    I hope that helps a bit :-)

  • Thank you.  Do you have any tips for identify what your end users are already connecting to on Instagram?  How do I know what to hashtag or who to follow?  Is there a process for this? 


    Also, do you have an tips for utilizing gamification techniques through social media?

  • So I've been logged in here for the past 15 mins. or so. I saw the update from Jessica G. But, now it's almost 10 after and I don't see anything taking place. What should I be seeing?

  • Hi folks - Part 1 has been posted! Just a quick reminder that you may need to refresh your browser page periodically. This will allow the latest parts of Karla’s article to appear above and the latest questions and answers to appear below.

  • Hi Lisa - thanks for joining us today :-)

    We just posted the first section of Karla's article above. You may need to refresh your page to see it.

    I hope that helps!

  • Thanks for all the great questions Stephanie! 

    There's lots of tools out there that will help you with competitor analysis and finding the best hashtags for your brand. One go-to tool I use a lot is a site called which lets you find hashtags surrounding a given topic.

  • Hi Karla! We’re often asked this question by our customers, is there a best day of the week to post on Twitter? How about specifically a best time to post throughout the day?

  • Stephanie - as for finding out who to follow what I find helpful is find hashtags that are relevant to your brand and then to look at the "recent" column on Instagram for that hashtag and follow accounts that are posting with it frequently.

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