Senin, 13 September 2010

12 Social Media Tips For Small Businesses

Many small businesses would agree that social media is great channel to target a wide audience. If you choose to, social media doesn’t require a single penny. Instead, time and effort are traded for better brand engagement and viral impact. The journey from learning the various social platforms to using them for business is tough and has certainly deterred many from continuing.
So, whether you’re a social media starter or one that has some experience under your belt, we hope this set of social media tips would provide you with the needed boost toward success.
1. Learn how social media works
Before leveraging on social media for your business, ensure that you master the basics first. To learn how each social platform works, diving straight in is the best method. I believe you would rather commit mistakes under your personal profile than your business’s.
2. Learn from others
As you’re learning how various tools work, you would come across other successful businesses on social media. Learn how they have done it and improvise to suit your style.
3. Create a plan
While it is great to dive straight in to learn social media, it wouldn’t be advisable for you to do the same for execution. The plan need not be a sophisticated one. The key is to be clear about your goals and understand the steps to achieve them.
4. Manage your expectations
Don’t be overly ambitious with the goals you set. While we often witness how big corporations have gained huge followers and fans in a short period of time, a small business, sadly, doesn’t have the same charisma. It takes time and effort to bond with the community.
5. Blog is crucial
A blog provides you with a central topic to share, discuss and connect with your online community. It also helps to generate more traffic to your site and improves your visibility on search engines. Learn more about the different blogging strategies here.
6. Design – looking good
You may not be able to afford the most exquisite design for your office but an eye-catchy design for your blog and social profiles shouldn’t be too costly. Design plays a major role by giving your visitors a positive first impression. It is a worthwhile expenditure. Get a good friend or a college student to fetch a good price.
7. Be extremely active
You would realize that a couple of big corporations love to adopt a cool image. They tend to tweet less and don’t usually respond to @mentions. Do the opposite. Be lively and converse.
8. Watch what you tweet
All business content and zero social interactions make your business social profile look dead – have a balance! Also, be careful of what you tweet. Don’t let your mood get the better of you.
9. Be innovative
Think of ways to break through clutter. For example, we recently covered how a restaurant smartly used Foursquare’s swarm badge to gather 161 people to their restaurant. The tools are dead themselves; make them alive through creativity.
10. Measure performance for free
There isn’t a need to pay to measure your social media performance. Free tools like Google Analytics and SocialMention would do a pretty decent job.
11. Learn and evolve
The digital world is changing rapidly. Keep up with the pace and evolve accordingly.
12. Traditional marketing still rocks
Social media isn’t the foolproof answer to your business’s marketing needs. Keep using coupons, print and guerrilla marketing tactics. They still rock and most likely still contribute to the bulk of your business revenue.

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