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31 Experts Give Their Best Small Business Tips for Standing Out on Social Media

Posted 23 June, 2014

31_Experts_Give_Their_Best_Small_Business_Tips_for_Standing_Out_on_Social_Media-lssmall business tipsTrying to get noticed on Facebook?

I won't sugarcoat it -- standing out on social media is tough!

So today, rather than offering you my own social media tips, I reached out to some of the top people across dozens of industries.

I asked these powerful influencers how they've managed to stand out so strongly in social media.

I've compiled their best tips below.

Enjoy! :)

Small Business Tips for Standing Out on Social Media

1. Adam Braun, Pencils Of Promise

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small-business-tipsPeople that are successful with social media use a mass platform to build unique, personal relationships. I DM people every day if I like their comment, I ask questions to every reader who posts about the #PoPbook on Instagram, and I send personalized messages to people all the time. Your following might be massive, but it's their authentic connection to you and your connection to them that matters.

2. Neil Patel, Kissmetrics

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small-business-tipsIf you are looking to stand out in the social media world, you don’t have to come up with something unique or creative. You just have to be willing to put in the time. The simplest way to stand out is to respond to people and help them out. Most people are too lazy to respond to a tweet… by doing simple things like this, you will stand out.

3. Kim Garst, KimGarst.com

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small-business-tipsTo truly stand out on social media, you have to be authentically passionate about what you do and who you serve. True passion is contagious, especially when expressed on social media. That is why marketers who are passionate about their product, business, and about the community they serve are far more likely to be successful.

Genuine enthusiasm spreads organically, and inspires and influences those around you. In the words of author Simon Sinek, "People don't buy what you do, they buy WHY you do it". If you do what you love, this passion will be evident in everything you do; and there's no one more magnetic than someone who truly loves what they do. It's a great way to stand out on social media.

4. Stacey Miller, Vocus

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small-business-tipsWhen individuals or businesses want to stand out on social media, they should think visually! Images catch our attention, keep our attention, and are digested faster than text. Add hi-res images to social media profiles and posts, and install free features like Twitter cards on your web properties so that anyone who posts your content also shares the visual love.

5. Julia Rosien, GoGirlfriend.com

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small-business-tipsAuthentic is probably the most over-used word in social media – but it’s also the secret to standing out in a crowd. No one thinks exactly like you and if you’re willing to share your thoughts and dreams with the world, you’re putting something out there that wasn’t there before. In a world of people trying to one-up the next person to get ahead, someone that’s unique and honest and just themselves – that’s intoxicating. If you can be you on social media, I want to get to know you better!

6. Jeff Bullas, JeffBullas.com

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small-business-tipsStanding out on a crowded web on social media is a challenge with nearly 1 billion websites and over 1.3 billion people on Facebook. What it requires at a very simple level are the following. A memorable brand either personal or corporate, great content (both written and visual), a large and engaged tribe of followers, persistence and continuous promotion.

7. Neal Schaffer, Maximize Your Social

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small-business-tipsThe best way for individuals or businesses to stand out on social media is to take a visual approach. Visuals appear prominently in news feeds of social networks, so take a visual approach to not only posting information but to communicating as well. Combine this with your own unique branding and perspective, and you're bound to stand out in this noisy social media world of ours.

8. John Haydon, JohnHaydon.com

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small-business-tipsThe simplest way to stand out on social media is to pay attention to your community. Always reply to comments, seeking to create value that goes beyond their expectation. One of the best examples of this approach is the Post Planner Experts group.

9. Jason Keath, Social Fresh

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small-business-tipsSocial media plays by the same rules as life. Want to stand out? Be remembered? Rise above your competitors? The answer is simply to help your audience. Teach them with 'how to' content. Introduce them to experts and peers that can improve their business. Help them get a new job or a new customer. Invite them to events they will love. Improve someone's life in a meaningful way, and they will remember you. In social media or otherwise.

10. Glen Gilmore, GlenGilmore.com

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small-business-tipsBe committed to excellence: sweat to find content that inspires and informs your target community. Listen and respond better than anyone else. Aim to earn trust, not 'followers.'

11. Blake Jamieson, PoolSupplyWorld

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small-business-tipsThis will probably sound cliche or obvious, but the best way to stand out is invent
your own best practices. Too many people just copy what another 'expert' says is the best. For example, I modified my pictures on Tinder to say 'Match of the Day.' I had no idea if it would work, because it was not a proven best practice. But because I was first to try it, and it worked really well, it was covered by major media including AdWeek, MSN, Business Insider and more.

12. Britt Michaelian, Soluma Productions LLC

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small-business-tipsPeople are humans and they have lives online and off. If you want to stand out on social media, remember that people want to be appreciated online and off. Treat your friends and followers with kindness and gratitude and show them you care about who they are. Do this consistently and you will not only stand out, but you will feel great.

13. Marsha Collier, The Collier Company, Inc

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small-business-tipsStanding out in a crowd of millions of tweets is never easy. Sharing good content is a given, but that is not enough. Show your personality in your posts, don't just quote titles, add interest!

Real standouts respond and connect with their community. Congratulate people on their successes and offer helpful suggestions when you can. Acknowledging those who RT you is always a nice idea - take if a step further by sharing content from those who share unique and interesting posts. Look to their Twitter stream, find something that they have shared that resonates with your own messaging and RT. Remember, social media is a two-way street.

14. Diana Adams, Adams Consulting Group

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small-business-tipsI think the '80/20 Rule' applies to social media just like everything else in life. 80% of people don't take the time to share quality content, they don't engage with their followers, and they aren't positive and upbeat. 20% of people do those things, and they are the ones who stand out, they keep social media interesting, and they raise the bar for all of us.


15. Zach Kitschke, Canva

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small-business-tipsMany brands spend time thinking about their content strategy, yet many forget to think about their visual brand. The best brands have a strong visual identity on social media. Every time you post, you need to differentiate your content from the flood of updates that fill people's social feed. It's been proven that images result in more retweets, Likes and comments.

When it comes to visuals, make sure you're consistent in what you post. Use consistent colors, fonts, photo filters and icons or logos. People will begin to recognize your visual style and will look out for your posts.

16. John Lusher, John Lusher Consulting

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small-business-tipsIndividuals: Be yourself! Follow your passions and interests on Twitter just as you do in life. For example, if you love baseball, follow teams, other fans or discussions surrounding the sport. Engage with others through hashtag discussions or Twitter chats on specific topics about baseball.

Businesses: Be consistent with your company message while being human. Businesses should make sure that what they tweet is consistent with their overall brand message and marketing. Businesses should be human; profiles of key personnel, behind the scenes, spotlighting company culture while not taking themselves too seriously.


17. John Aguiar, JohnPaulAguiar.com

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small-business-tipsThe best way to stand out in social media is to do what other people are not willing to do. Start by being real, being available, and being helpful. Combine all that with making sure your branding from your blog or business follows you onto every social media site you are active on. If you do all that it will be easy for you to be seen, heard and followed on social media.

18. Marty McPadden, PodJam.tv

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small-business-tipsThe best way I’ve found to truly stand out on social media is to be yourself. So many times I see people hiding behind fake avatars and creating a false profile because they feel inadequate. Your uniqueness is your greatest asset. Everyone has something to contribute. Stop worrying about what other people think and put the real you out there. You’ll create more productive and lasting relationships and build trust at the same time.

19. John Davies, John Davies Consulting

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small-business-tipsCare more. People matter. Engage earnestly with your digital neighbor. Prosper first with your community and the rest will come in due course. This is my ‘digital handshake’, as it truly is a pleasure and honor to meet you.

20. Jason Eng, IBM

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small-business-tipsSocial media is supposed to be social, so individuals and businesses can stand out on social media by making it about relationships. Spend time understanding people and make it a two-way street, and you'll stand out.

21. Jason Cruz, JsnCruz.com

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small-business-tipsWhen deciding which social platform to be on, consider just two things: where your consumers currently are, and the next place they could potentially be. Then work more on the 'next place' -- and stay ahead.

22. Konrad Sanders, The Creative Copywriter

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small-business-tipsShamelessly unleash your personality. Be bold. Be brazen. Treat people like they're your closest mates. All the hot shots on this list are just regular people like you. So make 'em laugh. Comment on their comments. Offer your unique insights. Challenge them. Flirt with them. You're an expert at something -- so share your expertise with the world, and people will appreciate your angle. Social media offers you the unique opportunity to reach out and chat with anyone. So reach out and chat confidently to the big cheeses in your industry. Show 'em what you're made of. You're just as awesome as them!

Get a unique, memorable, branded profile pic. Because social media users – especially the big influencers – see thousands of tiny gravatars and profile pics every week. If you're attacking the web with wisdom, humor, charm, confidence and valuable content, AND you have a distinct, stand-out profile pic – then you'll get noticed and remembered by influencers and users alike.

23. Thomas Marzano, Philips

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  • Be true to yourself not your self
  • Lend an ear, a hand, even a shoulder
  • Be visual, coherent and simple
  • Be thoughtful, meaningful and relevant
  • Be timely and responsive
  • Be first and ahead of the pack
  • Be mindful of the impact you have and its consequences.

24. Adam Connell, Blogging Wizard

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small-business-tipsOne thing in particular that has worked best for me has been simply to go out of my way to help someone. For just a moment, forget your business goals or trying to get anything out of the situation for myself. (the gains come later) Just be helpful and don’t ask for anything in return. Use your expertise to help people solve their problems and you’re not just standing out, you’re wowing the people you help and becoming memorable

In the short term you will earn more followers that are more engaged, and that’s great. But the real magic happens in the long term. The gains come later when the people you have helped need a service your business offers or a product that you sell.

25. Igi Fischer, IgiFischer.com

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small-business-tipsUse Facebook fan page posts ... as your extended website e.g. to provide FAQs, customer service, contact info and other important notifications that people might need on the go.

Facebook fan page posts are fully responsive, which means that they load fast and adapt their entire functioning to any mobile or tablet device, as well as desktop computers. Since those posts are public and do not require a Facebook account, they can be just seen as regular public multimedia landing pages to be shared and distributed cross media, either by Twitter, WhatsApp, SMS, QR codes, email or any other (social/mobile) media that can carry links.

26. Amy Vernon, Amy Vernon, LLC

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small-business-tipsBe yourself. Really, that's it. Of course, it reminds me of the old Bill Cosby joke, 'what if you're an a-hole?' That's a whole 'nother something and let's, for the sake of this post, assume you're a perfectly lovely human being.

Be yourself. You will attract the people who like you and are interested in what you have to say. You will not attract the people who don't like you and are not interested in what you have to say. That's fine. Why do you need to attract people who aren't interested in what you have to say? You don't. And that holds true whether you're simply a person hanging out on social media sites or a business -- if people aren't interested in what you have to offer, you shouldn't have to waste time trying to get them interested.

27. Amy Howell, Howell Marketing Strategies, LLC

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small-business-tipsStanding apart for a brand or business means having valuable information that is relevant, timely, interesting and helpful. Being real (not automated) and engaging with others is also critical in my opinion.

28. Jenny Brennan, Virtual Office Worx

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small-business-tipsStanding out on social media as a small business or an individual can be challenging. The key to your success lies on your ability to treat each relationship with tender loving care.

Make sure you respond to every comment, tweet and interaction. It is also important to do your research. Find out more about the person who has taken the time to reach out. Check out their website and connect with them on their social media accounts. This has made a huge difference to me in building strong relationships with my best clients.

29. Collin C. Cottrell, Maxima Media

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small-business-tipsYou want to stand out in your social media marketing efforts? Put more effort into creating killer 'value first' content! If you truly take the time and put your efforts into coming up with a variety of content that gives your fans and followers value before you ever try to sell them your product or service, you will separate yourself from the majority of today's social media posts.

How often do you see posts that say 'buy this', 'click on this link', 'view my amazing new product'? I see them all the time. In fact, I would say that the majority of the posts I see are posts asking their fans or followers to do something first and in return they will get something back (... maybe). I usually scroll right past these posts. If you really want to stand out, give your fans or followers something upfront - do it over and over several times. Then, hit them with a rare 'asking post' and you will be surprised at how much more response you get.

30. Michelle Mangen, TheVirtualAsst.com

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small-business-tipsIf you want to have a deeper connection with your fans/followers on social media, do what you can to genuinely get to know them. For example, ask a question about something in their Twitter bio and try to always use their first name when chatting. Those 'small' efforts can have a huge payoff and true friendships will start to evolve as a result.

31. Mark Ivey, Ivy's Garden Foods

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small-business-tipsMy tips for standing out on social media are pretty basic:

  • Know your audience: Our core audience are people who can’t or won’t eat gluten, and are constantly hunting for good gluten free dishes. So a large part of our content revolves around delicious gluten free recipes (example: Lemongrass curry with coconut ginger prawns, yumm!).
  • Go beyond the expected and deliver something of true value: We also write about gluten free news and trends that give insight into important issues that strike close to home. This is where we go beyond the norm, while also playing to my personal strengths (I’m a former journalist).
  • Tie it to news and trending topics: Look out for relevant news or trending topics. In our case, Jimmy Kimmel was making fun of gluten free people and it was going viral, so we wove that into the title and first part of the post, with our own twist (What Jimmy Kimmel Didn’t Know... )


I was so honored to have these experts share their tips!

And in fact, I learned a lot by just engaging with them. :)

So please share this post or forward it to a friend in need. I’m sure you know someone who could benefit from these small business tips.

And now let me ask you: What's your best advice for standing out on social media?

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