Let’s talk about how you can make social media really pay off for your business by joining the right social media sites, sharing content and participating in lively conversations and growing your networks.
You can’t tap into the power of social media unless you’re there. First, you’ll want to get to know the different networks. Which ones are your customers using most? This will help you decide if you need a Facebook page, an Instagram page, a YouTube channel, a Pinterest account, a Twitter handle, a Google+ page, a LinkedIn company page, or some combination of these and others.
Then, you’ll need to create your profile, or what usually ends up being your “home page” on each of the sites you’re going to participate in. Each social network is different, but whenever possible, you’ll want to add particulars about your business, like your location and contact information. Some let you add more information about your business or even photos and video.
Once you “move in” to a social network, it’s time to get to know the neighbors. Making friends takes time and effort, but if they can help get the word out about your business, it’s an investment that really pays off. It’s important to know that while you may be using social media for business gains, it’s a very different medium than your typical advertising channels.
The people you interact with on social media don’t want to just be “talked at.” Think of it more as a conversation a give and take relationship that ebbs and flows. Treat this network as you would treat your friends and colleagues in the real world. Making friends on social media won’t happen overnight, and it can’t be forced.
Start by recruiting existing customers, maybe with a sign in your shop that says “Follow us here” or even better a 10% discount if they connect with you online. Follow that up with other ways to grow your network: contests, special events, members-only offers, entertaining content, or even real, face-to-face meet-ups for members of your social circles. And remember, every member of your social network has a network of their own. Social media is all about sharing, so as you add posts and pictures and get involved in conversations; it’s easy for people to connect with you. And that means more eyeballs on you and your business. Do you want to attract new customers to your business, leverage on using social media.