Melissa is a mother of 2, lives in Utah, and writes for a multitude of sites. She is currently the EIC of and writes about health, wellness, and business topics.

Service-based businesses often don’t have the capital to spend on marketing campaigns – at first. Owners will put on many hats: answering phones, taking service calls and even marketing their websites.

Social media is often a go-to solution for small business owners, but it’s not as easy as just creating a profile; if you build it, they will not come without hard work.

You have a worldwide platform with social media, Facebook has over 2 billion users, yet it’s hard to be seen by the right audience. The problem is that there is a lot of competition, and you need to outwork them if you hope to surpass them.

So, what are service-based businesses doing to attract clients on social media?

1. Create and Share Content That Matters

Stop rolling your eyes. Content needs to matter in a world that is filled with new content every second. You can look at a lot of examples, such as Martell Home Builders. The company has effectively cut out the middle-man through content marketing.

Their blog is a prime example of how answering questions and educating customers is done.

They transition this to their Twitter page by:

  • Sharing current trends
  • Sharing relevant posts and content
  • Sharing their awards and achievements

The company is building an audience through good-old hard work.

2. Social Proof and Trust Building

Consumers have many options, and with the swipe of a finger, they will go to your competitors if they don’t trust your business. Service-based businesses demand more trust than a typical retailer, and services need to do great work at a respectable price.

But what matters even more is trust.

Trust is different than it was in the past. Before the Internet, people asked their friends to refer them, and word-of-mouth was a key to success. But things have changed slightly. People flock to the Internet to gain trust in a business.

Social media helps build trust, and companies are doing this in several ways:

  • Asking clients to leave reviews or testimonials
  • Posting ratings on websites (Yelp, for example)

Consumers are more than happy to leave reviews on social media sites when directed to them. Sending a follow up email after a service is complete is a great way to start generating reviews.

Lining & Coating Solutions is using a different approach to appeal to commercial clients. On their social media page, the company is promoting its commercial pipe lining as a minimally-disruptive solution that doesn’t impact traffic flow. This helps build trust among commercial clients and attracts new clients by offering a different solution to piping problems.

Trust-building is key when dealing with social media for service-based businesses.

3. Building a Targeted List of Followers

Social media followers can act as your own promotional army, but your followers need to be:

  • Targeted
  • Engaged

You have to choose whether you want a large following of people that will never share your content or use your services, or if you want a trimmer follower count comprised of potential customers that will share your content.

It takes a lot of hard work to build your follower list. You’ll need to:

  • Research your target audience. Hash tags and keywords are how followers will find you. Spy on your competitors, and use tools to start adding relevant hash tags to your post.
  • Be interesting. If all you’re doing is posting about your business, no one is going to listen. Post content that is interesting and helpful to your followers.
  • Engage your audience. Talk to your followers and answer their questions. A little engagement will go a long way in helping your followers remain followers and spread the word about your business.

Social media is a long-term effort, so start small and continue to test your approach to gaining followers and building your brand.