5 Tips to Creating a Social Media Presence for Your Small Business

  1. Never underestimate the power of blogging – A blog is where you get to talk about your business and not worry about boring uninterested souls to tears. Use this arena to generate discussion about your product or service. Answer your FAQ’s and invite your customers, clients or interested parties to comment. And do it all in a free, easy to use and to set up environment that allows you to control both the content and the comments. 2 favorite blog sites: www.wordpress.com , www.blogger.com .
  1. Open a Twitter account – here is where you provide snippets of info or links to articles about your business or industry that you would like to share with your target audience.
  1. Open a Linked In account. This site is less of a playground and more about getting down to business. It allows you to link to people you know or have worked with and to build a network of individuals based on your industry, geography or education. One of the best areas on Linked In is Groups.  Monitor the ones pertinent to your field and answer the questions posted or open a line of discussion about a topic you would like some feedback on. Linked In is also an excellent place to give and receive recommendations that serve to build your reputation in your field.
  1. Establish a Facebook Page for your business that is separate from your personal profile. The line between business and pleasure can be blurry on Facebook and you want your business page to be about your business, not someone’s online farming or mafia playtime.  Use this space to promote your blog posts to your fans and to inspire discussion, which works incredibly well on Facebook with the easy commenting ability.
  1. Your posts don’t have to be, and in fact shouldn’t be, all about you. They should be about solving your customer’s problems and answering their inquiries.  Finding out what those problems are is one of social media’s greatest assets. The opportunity to speak one’s mind can bring powerful feedback about your product or service and you can streamline your offering to directly answer these issues.

Overall, social media works best when your offering is consistent. Leave your Twitter account inactive for a month and you simply fade into the background – not a good place for a business to be. Use these tools as a cohesive unit, think of them as a way to talk to everyone interested in your businesses at the same time, without having to schedule hundreds of appointments. Remember, if you use social media as a big advertisement you will quickly be ‘unfollowed’ and deleted, if people wanted ads shouted at them they would turn on their TV. Social media requires the players to step up their game and tell us what they can do for us not just what they are selling. I for one think it is about time business, both big and small, had to think about what they are spewing into the world, and that makes me very grateful for the emergence and popularity of social media.

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