Thursday 20 December 2012

Social Media Marketing: Are You Effective Or Obnoxious?

Social Media
Most small businesses are using social media to market their products or services, and nearly half of those businesses aren't paying a penny for it. Considering the opportunities offered by social media venues, it seems that any small business would be remiss not to take advantage of them.

The problem is that you can't blindly use social media marketing to help grow your business. You must use it in a way that's effective for your particular business without overusing it. Finding the proper balance and usage techniques can be a challenge; these tips will help you learn how to use social media marketing effectively to leverage more business, instead of obnoxiously turning potential customers away.

  1. Observe Social Media Etiquette. Each social media venue, such as Twitter, Facebook and Pinterest, comes with its own etiquette. The overlaps in etiquette involve avoiding spam, responding to followers who comment and returning the favour when other users post about or promote you. Take a few moments to become familiar with the etiquette guidelines of each social media venue you use so you don't unknowingly turn people off.

  2. Post Consistently and with Value. Drive-by posting and spam-filled posts will cause you to lose the interest of potential followers faster than you can write your next tweet. Use social media marketing at least three days per week to make your efforts consistent. Know your intended audience and post information, images and/or tutorials that would be of interest to them. If you're not sure what your followers want to hear more about, ask them.

  3. Interact with and Respond to Followers. Social media is about connecting and interacting with others. Take time to respond to followers' comments and questions. Get the conversation started by asking questions yourself. Engaging in conversation allows you to build relationships with consumers, which can help you build your business.

  4. Make it Professional. Even if your intended audience is teens that comment and post in text slang, keep your social media language professional as you gear your content to them. It's important to reach your audience where they're at, but you also want to be taken seriously by them.

  5. Know Your Followers. If you don't have a professional researching your demographics for you, you've got to invest some time in knowing who your customers and followers are. This will allow you to post social media updates that speak to their needs and interests so you can captivate their attention.

Small business owners use social media marketing because it's inexpensive, easy to use, requires little time and paves the way toward increased communication with customers. To make it work for you, you must approach your social media marketing efforts as conversations and ensure that what you're talking about is of interest to those whom want to listen. Follow these tips to streamline your online marketing efforts so you can gain more followers, convert them to customers and draw them to your website or brick and mortar. Above all, be consistent, professional and interactive to avoid coming across as yet another obnoxious small business.

About The Author: Lucy Harper works for Touchpoint Digital, a full service internet marketing company. Visit us to help facilitate your digital marketing and communications goals.

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Engaging Consumers Through Social Media
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5 Do's And 5 Don'ts In Social Media
Building Your Business With Social Media
The 10 Basic Rules Of Social Media Marketing
Top 14 Benefits Of Social Media Marketing
How To Use Facebook For Your Small Business
9 Tips For More Effective Facebook Marketing

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  1. Great tips! That's the trouble with some businesses, they think social media is a platform for advertising their products and services when in fact it's all about social interaction.

    1. Thanks Daniel! Yes social media should be used for showing the human side of a company.

  2. Good tips Daniel. For more and better traffic, follow the people on that network and post interesting and latest facts.


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