There are three keys businesses need before unlocking the door to social media success.
While YouTube views, Facebook 'likes' and Twitter followers are all important, online marketing efforts need to go a lot deeper than this.
Writing in the Financial Times, Booz & Company's Christopher Vollmer and Karen Premo highlighted three essential areas firms should excel in.
1. Community management
This is where you make your social media fans feel engaged and welcome. Don't just rack up the number of people who follow you on Google+, Twitter and Facebook, but reward them for doing so through listening and responding to their comments. The social experience you offer has to be unique, valuable and attentive and this includes a customer service function.
2. Content development
Step two highlights how content marketing plans are of utmost importance. Content needs to be sharable, authentic and build a connection between consumers and your small business. Social media has a huge helping hand in this.
The authors explained: "Burberry stands out as a brand that has become a social content powerhouse. In 2011 it streamed a live video feed of its spring/summer and fall/winter shows, sharing its unique content with millions of fans and interested consumers on Facebook and YouTube."
ContentPlus has previously gone into depth about how Burberry has managed to achieve a successful Facebook Timeline. This includes behind-the-scenes shoot photos and the exclusive unveiling of new collections.
Small fashion retailers can take the lead of Burberry and increase their presence through a Facebook Timeline app. This can help your SME become more prominent in News Feeds, which will help showcase your brand to the friends of your app users.
3. Real-time analytics capabilities
The third and final key to social media success is real-time analytics. You need to know what the impact your social media efforts are having and make sure whether or not they are suitable for your audience. Any insights gained can also be used toward service and product development.
What are the other steps your SME has taken in order to be a success on social media sites?