by Caren Waugh

The power of social media to grow businesses is undeniable. Before the Corona Virus Pandemic, many small businesses had a presence on social media, but this was not their primary way of selling products and services. Social media merely served as a space where you could get basic information about businesses. Customers would have to visit the physical store or follow a link to their website to purchase products and access services.

Social media advertising and marketing were not popular among small businesses pre COVID-19. Simply because people’s social media habits did not include purchasing products and services. Social media was a space to interact with friends and family globally. People were excited about the fact that family and friends they did not see or heard from in decades were now just a click away and could be reached at any time as there were no geographical or time barriers.

COVID-19, which took the world by storm and claimed over three million lives, transformed the way we do business globally. It forced small businesses to pivot to digital marketing, as the only other option was to close their doors. Although it took time for a great percentage of the population to adapt to this new way of life, since doing business on social media presented many challenges in various parts of the world, such as digital illiteracy and access to digital technology including computers, smartphones, tablets and the internet.  It also felt like we were adapting to this whole new reality at an accelerated pace. Especially because business owners and marketers discovered that social media marketing strategies were required to not only keep their doors open but to help them remain competitive.

In 2023 advertising revenue rose 23% to $34.15 billion for the 3rd quarter on Meta platforms alone. This can be attributed to the fact that people are now accustomed to doing business online from the comfort of their homes or relaxing on the beach. From purchasing household items and clothing, to ordering fast-food and mid-night snacks via door-to-door delivery apps. This is no longer a temporary response to COVID-19 but a digital lifestyle that is easy and convenient.

How to Leverage Social Media

Everyday new businesses emerge on social media; hence, entrepreneurs and marketers must constantly change their business models to include stronger investment in digital marketing, in order to remain ahead of the competition.

Top 5 StrategiesIf you have ever considered how to become a successful business owner ithdigital age, you must invest in the following digital marketing strategies:

1. Knowledge of Social Media Platforms

The advent of digital technology has seen the continuous evolution of social media networking sites. Each network has its own rules, practices and audience based on demographic differences. To be a successful business owner or social media marketer, you must understand the different social media platforms and how they function. Additionally, you must stay abreast of social media trends in order to produce content based on best practices, user demands, and constant changes with algorithm and social media marketing trends.

2. Influencer Marketing

 Influencer marketing is not a new phenomenon but has become extremely popular in the social media landscape over the last few years. Influencer marketing is a viable and relevant social media marketing strategy because influencers are not just individuals who post on social media, they are original content creators such as bloggers, celebrities, brand ambassadors, media personalities and journalists. Platforms like TikTok rose to prominence and more people are creating content and becoming influencers in their niche. Once these influencers become popular, they earn sponsorship deals from businesses to create unique content, promotions, and social media campaigns to increase brand awareness and grow businesses.   

3.  User-generated Content

User-generated content has been a top trend in social media marketing for a few years, and it has returned in 2024 with a bang. Followers and subscribers create content talking about your products or brands and share it on their social media page. Your products are automatically presented by your audience. Taking the lead in 2024, user-generated content will continue to play an integral role in helping to build brand awareness. When customers share their positive experiences, especially without being prompted, this will undoubtedly build your authentic brand image.

4. TikTok Video Trends

Since video trends come and go so quickly, it is important to stay abreast of current video strategies and take advantage of them while they are popular. TikTok continues to dominate social media marketing with over 97.8 million hours spent watching videos on the platform every day, compared to viewership on Instagram which amounts to 17.6 million hours of reels each day. Hence, with the rapid engagement and time spent on TikTok, trends develop on the platform before migrating to Reels and shorts.

5. Edutainment Content

Edutainment content is another leading trend on social media. This includes posts that inform and educate customers in a fun and engaging way. Videos usually use skits and scenarios to present information. These types of videos gain popularity because the content is appealing to viewers which enables them to learn things they didn’t know before in a simple and appealing manner. More importantly, information is more likely to resonate with people when this type of content is used. If you have a humorous and funny brand, integrate that emotional expression into your content. If your business is direct and serious, you should also reflect that in your content. Remember, your brand doesn’t have to be presented in “particular way,” to appeal to your audience. It is not a one-size-fits-all approach. Your brand will captivate people based on its authenticity.

Edutainment content is popular on TikTok, Instagram and X, previously Twitter.  


The social media landscape continues to evolve and so does the social media appetite of consumers. Hence, it behooves business owners to employ social media marketing strategies that will increase traffic to their platforms and allow customers to learn about their products and services in a fun and engaging way.

Any investment in social media marketing is an investment worth making, as businesses stand to drastically increase brand awareness, customer base, realize their overall sales and marketing goals which will propel them ahead of the competition in 2024 and beyond.

For more information on how to grow your small business on social media please leave comments below.

Caren Waugh is the CEO of CW Media Consultants, a proven communications and social media strategist, licensed small business specialist, blogger and print media contributor who helps small businesses to create brand awareness, strengthen customer relations, and shape their online marketing endeavors with winning social media strategies.

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