Social Media Strategy for small businesses with Zahira Kharsany

My name is Zahira Kharsany, a social media enthusiast who began her career at the Mail & Guardian Online, a platform that shifted my focus and attention to online media. 

I was recently on the judging panel for the Assegai Awards 2021 and the iAB Bookmarks for Social, Community and Influencer in 2021/2022.

I’m currently the Head of Social Media at Gorilla Creative Media working as a key digital strategist. My passion lies in social media and digital marketing, especially in light of how people consume digital content on a day to day basis. 

What are your tips for running a successful social media strategy for small businesses?

A social media strategy is like any other strategy, it requires you to understand and identify your goals, and to be clear on your business objectives. You need to have an understanding of which social media platforms will help you attain those objectives.

 

“You don’t need to be on every social media platform.”

As a small business, the one thing that you need to remember is that, you don’t need to be on every social platform. What you need to focus on are the platforms that your target audience is active on. Your business will grow and your audience will love you for focusing on them.

So:

  1. Set  clear business goals and objectives.
  2. Understand your target audience and the social media platforms that they are most active on.
  3. Invest the time in the platform of choice, don’t think of it as just a by-the-way. You need to put in the time, to be really effective. It is not the  intern’s job to develop a strategy for your business, although interns are great at supporting and helping on it. 
  4. Give it your best and don’t stretch yourself too thin.
What social media trends can we expect in the near future and how can small businesses take advantage of the trends?

We’ll continue to see video content becoming a key focus on social media. This has definitely seen a bigger trajectory with the increased usage of TikTok. Video content has also made a huge impact on the key social media channels across South Africa. 

A lot of the video content that we see is created using mobile devices. Mobile devices have come a long way, making it easier to shoot videos. Find ways of telling your brand story through video by entertaining and engaging with your audience. 

Another growing trend is video content being mainly viewed in vertical format. This style of viewing has been deemed a ‘natural’ way ie. the way that people naturally hold their devices. South Africans mainly consume social media from their mobile devices so this is a critical point to remember when creating content for your audience.

What makes you Awesome?

Awesome comes in many forms, but for me, it is the inherent way that we as humans communicate. Even when words are different and languages change, we still find ways to communicate and get our ideas across. We find ways to tell our stories and adapt to mediums that help us tell these stories. We’ve seen this increasing storytelling through the advancement and accessibility of technology as a medium. But at the heart, it’s still the same idea.

I want to tell my story, I want to share my experience and listen to other stories. Go on and tell your own story.

 

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