How to Handle the Social Media Pressure on Small Businesses

There is an incredible amount of social media pressure on small business and many do not know how to handle it. That’s completely understandable. Small businesses rarely have the budget to outsource their social media strategy and campaigns to high tech companies nor do they have the budget to hire an in house professional who can really deliver results.

Some small businesses DO have the resources to outsource to a local SEO and marketing company who delivers results and gives them good bang for their buck. Others cannot justify spending money on it at all and they just muddle along.

The result is that none of these companies actually understand how it all works and so they end up flopping around in the social media ocean, trying one thing, trying another, and ultimately failing at all.

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As an SEO and marketing company owner, I read many articles about the latest trends, about what works and what doesn’t, the latest and greatest, and it occurred to me not that long ago that the average person also reads these articles in an attempt to get a handle on it all as well. Thing is, the articles are written for us, not them. No wonder the average individual and the average business owner throw their hands up in the air in despair and swear they just don’t understand any of it it’s all too complicated.

Well, they are absolutely correct. I get it because I work with it day in and day out, besides which it’s just my thing. These people are trying to run their business, in addition to which they are trying to wear too many hats, and they are not going to be able to take on what’s involved with establishing brand recognition across the board on all mediums.

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So, I decided I will write a series of articles not only explaining various topics in layman’s terms, but also with visuals that truly dumb down many of these topics which are too complex.

Some of the topics I will explain are Instagram, Facebook, e-commerce in general, SEO (Search Engine Optimization), Shopify, WooCommerce, WordPress and any others that come up that I feel will help mainstream small business get a grip and be able to make headway for their business.

Enjoy reading and learning!

Maureen McCullough LLC is your Bergen County New Jersey website design, SEO and marketing agency. We care about your business and want you to succeed. Give us a call today at 201.753.1677 for a free 20 minute consultation.

Your Website is Costing You Hundreds of Dollars in Sales

Whether you are an attorney, small law firm, online retailer, or a small business providing goods or services to your customer base, the very idea that your website is costing you hundreds, if not thousands of dollars in sales is quite the scary thought.

Many people think that their website is simply a set it and forget it tool. They couldn’t be more wrong.

ANY business owner worth their salt takes the time with their web designer or marketing agency to be constantly adding to their website, either visually with pictures or blog posts, tweaking the content, keeping their eye on their competition and implementing new offerings and features.

And ANY business owner who is truly interested in their business will spend most of their time actually running their business, not playing with a website builder with limited functionality, no interactive features and cookie cutter design. Business owners who try to cut corners with a cheap website builder end up with a less than stellar website full of broken code and no curb appeal by which to gain new clients.

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Constant evaluation of what your business offers will also prompt you, the small business owner, to diversify your offerings. WHY? To keep up with trends, competitors, to get ahead, to put yourself in a valuable niche with your customer base. This helps you add to your customer base. Which means you are making more money. Instead of losing money.

Why is constant interaction with your small business website important? Adding new product, new pictures, new content, new offerings, and new blog posts keeps your website fresh both for potential and current clients / customers and also for search engines like Google.

Consistent activity on social media – be it every day or once a week – is very important as well. The key to social media is CONSISTENCY. Being consistent, posting and sharing on a regular basis gives your audience a reason to look forward to your activity and therefore be in the know of what’s going on with your company.

Considering your website to be a set it and forget it tool will cause it, and your customer base, to wither and die. Much like a business that refuses to diversify it’s offerings, that business has absolutely no back up to lean on when the main offering dries up.

You don’t have to spend thousands of dollars to make thousands of dollars and grow your business. But you do have to put into your business in order to get what you expect out of it.

Maureen McCullough LLC is your Bergen County New Jersey website design, SEO and marketing agency. We care about your business and want you to succeed. Give us a call today at 201.753.1677 for a free 20 minute consultation.

Debunking Some Popular Social Media Myths

As most of us know, social media is considered to be a very important gateway to our businesses. Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, and Twitter are some of the top contenders.

Many social media articles have pounded the following do’s and don’ts into the average business owners heads:

  • Don’t sell to people, therefore don’t feature your products.
  • Post funny videos and the people will come running because videos go viral.
  • Always come up with a clever message that no one else uses and the people will come running to you.
  • And, in a complete tongue in cheek, put your store or products on Facebook so people can buy from you right from that platform
  • Spend lots of money on advertisements on all venues.

And, if the business owner pays attention to the above, they follow the trendy rules diligently, and still nothing happens. Why is that I wonder?

Many of my clients agree with me wholeheartedly that the above is NOT the way to go and to achieve results. Those that embrace the above are no longer serviced by our marketing firm because, against our best advice, they followed the above, got no results, and it became our fault that the cash register in their e-commerce shopping cart was not ringing up. That’s fine. Each to their own ideals.

And, we should add, unfortunately, each one of those clients went out of business within a few months. So sad.

The remainder of our clients who follow our advice on this important matter of social media are seeing results. Why? One very simple philosophy.

Social media is about cultivating relationships with potential customers. Very simple.


Social media properly done is NOT about following the latest trend and coming up empty. Do you seriously think a bakery, a jeweler, dog groomer or a construction company is going to post funny pointless videos instead of their latest product or project????  Really????

Absolutely not. The bakery is going to post their latest confectionery wonders, to show people what they can do for your birthday party, your wedding, your dessert table at your special event.

The construction company is going to post pictures of their latest renovations, remodels, and new homes they’ve built.

The jeweler is going to post pictures of their latest unique design, or a gorgeous new product.

The dog groomer is going to post pictures of clean, fluffy, well groomed stunning dogs waiting for their pet parent to pick them up after a day at the spa.

Are they going to scream “BUY FROM ME” ???

Again, absolutely not.

They are simply showing you what they can potentially do for you. That’s it. Just putting it out there. That’s the whole idea.

It takes an average of 11 pins, posts or tweets that catch the attention of the same person to eventually bring them to visit your website.

That’s a staggering number when you consider that the same person may not catch 11 consecutive pins, posts or tweets. People do not get on social media every day, nor do they glue themselves to your feed. They have lives, families, jobs, and sometimes the information overload on social media causes them to just step back.

What it translates to for the business owner is that you have to work hard to get your customers. You have to post consistently, stay on target, stay on theme. The occasional funny video or personal picture of your garden tells people that you are human too and that you cut loose too.

However, your main objective is to stay on track, stay on target. Build the relationships with your audience in a non selling way. We like to call it showcasing.

Caption this, photo contests, and the occasional giveaway are fine as well, ONLY if they fit your business model. Otherwise, showcase your product, your project, your accomplishments AS A BUSINESS.

This needs to be done on a consistent basis every few days, not every few weeks.

Social media does not bring instant results. Newsflash.

Building good relationships over time takes time and effort. Social media is no different.

Maureen McCullough LLC is your Bergen County New Jersey website design, SEO and marketing agency. We care about your business and want you to succeed. Give us a call today at 201.753.1677 for a free 20 minute consultation.

If you are not getting the results on social media that you need for your business, we will put your business on track with one of our social media programs that best fits the individual needs of your business.

Why Social Media is So Overwhelming

Maureen McCullough LLC can help you with all your social media needs so you can concentrate on running your business. We know how it can be managing a small business and trying to wear too many hats.

Many of the small business owners that we interact with either as monthly clients or as training / tutoring clients have the same opinion of social media – that it is overwhelming. They know it is huge, and could be good for their business, but they either don’t understand it or cannot keep up with it.

This is a perfectly accurate analysis of social media. And it’s not the fault of social media in and of itself. The root cause is that we are bombarded with too much information all the time. Information overload can be irritating to downright scary and causes your brain to simply shut down and block things out. And for a small business owner who is just trying to run their business and grow their business, it can lead to some serious tearing out of their hair.

We know many small business owners who, before they came to us, were literally taking stabs in the dark at every possible facet of social media without knowing what they were doing. They had no:

  • no real understanding of the process
  • no game plan for growing their business
  • no digital marketing plan
  • no idea of what their target marketing audience is
  • no idea of what appeals to those people
  • no creative schedule for social media

All of them eventually abandoned their social media experience.

Why? Because without the points above, AND no real understanding of the process, it’s perfectly understandable that the small business owner would become frustrated and give up because they aren’t seeing any appreciable movement, engagement, follows, likes, or action.

Plus, the small business owner is taking time away from actually running their business, so down the line, business suffers in more ways than one.

Maureen McCullough LLC is your Bergen County New Jersey website design, SEO and marketing agency. We care about your business and want you to succeed. Give us a call today at 201.753.1677 for a free 20 minute consultation.

If you feel your business could benefit from social media, (and it can, believe me!) but you feel it is overwhelming or you do not understand it, no worries.

We have social media training that we can do for your staff if you are local to Bergen, Morris, or Sussex County New Jersey, and we have social media management plans that we can implement on your behalf if you would rather we take care of it.