Why should I use social media for my business? How can I use social media for my business?
When approached by a business owner that has never used social media, the following questions are a great place to start;
- What is your reason for using social media? Here are some great reasons;
- Brand Building – using Facebook Business pages, Twitter, and YouTube, a business can share their image and their story with anyone and everyone
- Relationship Building – using Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn, a business (and its staff) can start conversations with current and potential clients or persons of influence, this will strengthen relationships
- Sharing Expertise – LinkedIn Answers & Groups, a Blog, Facebook, and Twitter are all great places to share your knowledge and position you or your business as the expert in your field
- What are your goals? Here are some great goals;
- Increase website traffic – by including links back to your website or blog in your posts and updates, you will increase your traffic
- Increase Sales – by build relationships & sharing your expertise, people will begin to trust you and come to you when they need to buy
- Increase followers – by be interesting, authentic, and transparent, you will attract people who have similar interests or need your help
- Who is your target market? Here are some things to consider when thinking about your target;
- Businesses vs. Consumers – Twitter and Facebook business pages allow you to connect with people that you haven’t met yet, where LinkedIn and Facebook personal pages require some level of acknowledgement
- Professionals vs. Families – LinkedIn allows professionals to share, review, and recommend each other based on specialties and experience, while Facebook is about sharing your personal life with ‘friends’
- Local vs. International – LinkedIn and Facebook have groups that allow users to talk with other users about a similar interest regardless of geographic location, however the premise of some groups are the location itself (for example; Maine Entrepreneurs, Facebook Maine, etc…)
These questions help to determine the social media sites and services that are most appropriate the business, and they get the business owner thinking about social media as another networking avenue to be incorporated it into their marketing plan.