Social Media Marketing for Newbies

The Social Media Guru Cartoon Comic
The Social Media Guru Cartoon Comic” by seanrnicholson is licensed under CC BY-ND 2.0.

Most people use social media in their day to day lives and probably feel confident in using it. But what would you do if one day your boss said you were now responsible for creating and managing the social media for your entire organization? That’s what has happened to lucky old me. I was thrown into the lion’s den of social media marketing. In this post I’m going to share some of what I’ve learned in the process of managing social media for a not-for-profit organization in case you’re in the same position.

Create a Uniform Look

I did some initial research in the beginning to figure out how to make my posts look professional and came across Canva. If you haven’t heard of it Canva is an easy-to-use program that provides professionally looking templates to create social media post for a variety of platforms. There are other programs out there, but I decided to experiment with Canva. In the beginning each of my posts looked different and drew on the colours of the organizations we were working with. That’s when I realized that while we were featuring other organizations our social media was meant to be about us. This led me to learn that the first and most important thing you want to focus on is creating a uniform look for your social media. This means selecting your branding colours and fonts that you will use continuously across your posts to make everything come together and represent your organization with a unified image. These branding colours can be drawn out from your company logo, which you should set as your profile display picture.

Planning is Key

Another thing I learned was to get the know each platform and identify which one’s you plan to use and what type of content you plan to post on each. Maybe Instagram will be used for more social events and photos whereas LinkedIn will be used mainly to promote professional development seminars. You also don’t have to use all platforms to have a social media presence – maybe TikTok isn’t right for your audience or maybe it is.

Another tip is to make things you can reuse for multiple purposes. If you host meetings or seminars regularly this will save you a lot of time and help with the unified image. Finally, especially if you are working with others but also to keep yourself on track it’s a good idea to plan your posts. Software such as Loomly can help to keep you organized and in control of your social media calendar.

Educate Yourself

While I’m still no social media pro, I hope some of these tips are helpful as a place to get started if you are faced with the task of creating a professional social media presence. There are also a lot of great resources online such as videos on YouTube and classes through LinkedIn that can point you in the right direction. And if your organization provides professional development, you could even convince them to sign you up for a social media certificate program at your local college.

Have you been tasked with creating your company’s social media presence? Can you share any tips you’ve learned along the way?


Are you the lucky one chosen to manage your company’s social media presence but don’t know where to get started? Check out my blog for a few suggestions at #socialmediamarketing


New to social media marketing? Grab some tips to get started #socialmediamarketing #business

Small on Social: Social Media for Small Business

Social media has changed the game for owners of small businesses. It used to be that you had to pay to take out an ad in the newspaper or put up a billboard, plaster signs all over the neighborhood or rely on word of mouth to advertise for your business. Social media now allows business owners access to free marketing and advertising tools at their fingertips. It allows them to interact with their customer base and attract future customers directly. This provides many positive opportunities, but also has its disadvantages. Let’s talk about some of the benefits and drawbacks of using social media for your small business.


Social media is a great instrument to use to establish your brand. You can cater the aesthetic look of your company and create content that centers around that. There are many tools that are available online to create content such WordPress and Canva and you can use photos and videos to bring the personal touch. All these tools allow business owners to connect with current and future customers and provide a much wider market than more traditional methods of advertising. Social media also provides the opportunity to recruit staff who align with your business whether it be using a platform like LinkedIn or advertising through your Instagram. You can even check on your competition to see what you could be doing to improve. And all of this is available to your business for no cost.


Although the use of social media is free, one thing it does cost a business owner is time. Gone are the days of posting one advertisement or campaign and being done. Using social media for business is an ongoing if not daily commitment to posting and creating content. For many businesses this is something that ends up costing them money eventually to pay someone to take over these tasks. There are additional drawbacks to using social media such as the risk of your content being hacked or stolen and used by someone else. Also, just as you can receive positive reviews and feedback you can receive negative attention as well.

Check out this video for a lesson on Social Media 101 for Small Business:

Do the benefits of social media outweigh the drawbacks for your small business? Is the cost of time spent worth it for business growth? Do you have a story to share? Comment below!


Are you a #smallbusiness on social? Has social media changed how you market your business for the better or worse? Check out my new post and share your story! #socialmedia


Thinking about jumping into the world of social media for your small business? Learn the benefits and drawbacks and take the first step by checking out my new blog post! #smallbusinessowner #marketing

Keeping Up with Social Media: How to Keep Our Kids Safe Online

Social media icons.
Automotive Social Media Marketing” by socialautomotive is licensed under CC BY 2.0.

If you’re a parent like me you’ve probably spent hours consumed with thoughts about social media and the impact it has or will have on your child(ren). Growing up in a world that uses social media in so many ways it is inevitable that there will be a time when our children will want to join this world if they haven’t already. So how do we protect kids and youth from the negative effects of social media while still allowing them to enjoy the positives? A good place to start is with staying informed as parents, establishing boundaries around the use of these technologies, and communicating with our kids on their use of social media.

Pros and Cons

Social media isn’t all bad. It centers around communication and social interaction which is vital for human beings. It allows young people to connect with their friends, share their interests, express themselves, play games and learn new things. But for parents the positives don’t always outweigh the negatives. Unfortunately, banning our kids from social media probably isn’t a solution that will work out well in the long run and there is a lot to be weary of. Negatives include the effects on mental health and self-esteem, cyber-bullying, predators, loss of real-life connections and isolation, and the fear of missing out a.k.a. FOMO.

So What Can We Do?

The main thing we can do as parents is to stay informed, monitor and limit the use of social media, keep the discussion on this topic ongoing with our kids, and keep them busy with other things.

Monitor and Limit Social Media Use

Data from JAMA Psychiatry suggests that spending over 3 hours each day on social media may increase the risk of mental health problems in adolescents, so this is a good limit to start with. You can also think about creating a family media agreement which sets boundaries and outlines the expectations of device use in your family. Finally, there are apps available such as Qustodio which automatically limit screen time so we can determine when content is accessible to them. Many of these top parental control apps include additional features such as location tracking, call and text monitoring and some like Bark even monitor for cyber-bullying and suicidal behaviour.

Keep Open Communication

Aside from directly monitoring and limiting social media it is important to keep open communication with our kids. Talking to them about what is going on at school and with friends is essential to spotting problems such as cyber-bullying. Educating them on the permanence of their posts, privacy issues, and the ways social media manipulates and impacts our perception of reality is also important to keep them rooted in the real world. You can find many resources online to help educate yourself and your kids such as Media Smarts and Telus Wise.

Keep Them Busy

Finally, keeping them busy with friends, activities and sports will help by giving them less time to be online and more chances to engage in real life.

What do you do to help keep your child(ren) safe online? What has worked or hasn’t worked for you? Let’s keep the conversation going, share your comments below.


Parents are thoughts of your kids on social media keeping you up at night? Get some safety tips and join our discussion at


Parents are you worried about your kids social media use? Get some safety tips and join our discussion at