Social Networking For Your Business
An internet marketer has many tools with which to build and grow their business. You have advertising, content, search engine optimization, and linking among many other marketing and promotion tools and strategies.
Even though social networking is coming up to being 2 decades old, many internet marketers are just now discovering the power this marketing and promotion tool has. Now that we have giants like Facebook and Twitter, people are finally starting to pay attention.
What does this all mean? It means that participating in social networking is a tremendous opportunity to promote your business.
Social Networking Site’ as it is defined by TechWeb is, “A Web site that provides a virtual community for people interested in a particular subject or just to “hang out” together.”
Whatis.com defines social networking as “the practice of expanding the number of one’s business and/or social contacts by making connections through individuals.
Is There Anybody Out There?
Before you begin to even consider social networking as a tool to promote your business, you probably want to make sure your particular audience actively participates in social networking. A bit of research and some time on various social networking sites will tell you what you need to know and chances are, your audience is participating.
According to the same NetPop study cited earlier, the most common social networking participants are between the ages of 18-29. The next most popular age group are people 30-39 and even seniors are getting in on the action. In fact, social networking usage is increasing amongst all age groups, so don’t let these stats deter you. Dig in to find where your market it is.
Over the next few pages, we’re going to take a look at three main topics. The first chapter is devoted to discussing the benefits of social networking, mainly what you can do with these sites to market and promote your business. In the second chapter, we’ll take a look at two main social networking sites,
Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn to explore your marketing and promotion options in depth. Finally, we’ll wrap it up with a quick bit about social networking dos and don’ts.
Let’s get started!
Social Networking, More than a Meet and Greet – Use It to Promote Your Company
Social networking is being used by companies of all sizes, in every industry imaginable and all around the globe. It’s being embraced as a tool that connects you directly to your customers, where they hang out, and it gives you as a business owner a unique opportunity to provide value, brand your company and well…sell your product or service.
According to the folks at Microsoft, social networking enables companies to:
1. Express Yourself as A Brand
2. Create and Maintain Good Conversations
3. Empower Participantshow can you accomplish all the above, you ask, by posting comments on social networking sites?
How Social Networking Grows Your Business
Social gives business owners the ability to:
• Build an online presence
• Increase website traffic
• Boost SEO
• Establish credibility
• Connect with your audience
• Glean valuable information to grow your business
Whether your online business is just starting out, or you’re a large corporation, adding social networking to your marketing strategy will help you promote and grow your business.
Options to Use Social Networking to Promote Your Business
There are a number of ways you can use social networking to promote your business. Let’s take a look at the most popular and powerful.
• Share Lessons and Experiences – Social networking is about connecting. If you have something relevant to your industry to share, share it. Start conversations and partake in them.
• Share Pictures, Audio and Video – Many social networking sites embrace visual forms of posting as well. YouTube of course is a video social networking site but even Facebook lets you link to and post audio and video messages. And Twitter developers have created picture and video sharing applications.
• Share Information – Post interesting and relevant statistics, quotes, or headlines and start a conversation. When appropriate, link to your company website.
• Drive Traffic to Your Blog or Website – Post a curiosity generating or attention grabbing headline and include a link to your website.
• Promote – Launching a new product? Announce it via social networking sites. Offering a huge holiday discount? Let people know, but use this approach with the other more relationship-building aspects of social networking. Nobody wants to follow a company that simply pushes their products.
• Advertise – Many social networking sites also sell advertising space. Facebook has run a successful advertising program for quite some time, and Twitter and Linked are in the game as well. They all offer very highly targeted opportunities to advertise your business, even if you’re on a strict budget.
Before we move into the next chapter and look at the details of how to accomplish all of the above with Twitter and Facebook, let’s take a look at a few of the most popular social networking sites.
Top Social Networking Sites
The benefits to using social networking to promote your business have a wide reach. You’ll not only connect with your audience on a new and more personal level, which is required in today’s competitive market, you’ll also reach a whole new group of people. Couple that with the fact that social networking is extremely cost effective and your return on investment is like nothing else in your marketing toolbox. Next, we’ll take a look at two of the more powerful social networking tools, Facebook and Twitter. We’ll also take a brief look at LinkedIn.