Written by: Drew Lyon Austin, Texas
Yes! Social media is a free way to raise awareness about your business and interact directly with customers. Facebook and Twitter are the two most prominent platforms for social marketing, with many others also making an impact. There is little if any downside to incorporating social media into your marketing efforts. However, you should set realistic expectations and understand the commitment it takes to be successful…
- Time: For social marketing to work you need to update accounts on a DAILY basis. This takes time. You may need to assign social management duties to a single employee or rely on a committee of team members to update accounts with regularity.
- Consistency: Keep social messaging consistent with your website and sales material. This is particularly important if you are relying on the ‘committee’ method for maintaining accounts.
- Over-sharing/Getting personal: The consensus is to avoid sharing too much information about your lunch plans or golf game on social networks. However, it is generally accepted that businesses will use these mediums as a more informal platform to address their audience. Disclosing limited amounts of personal information may help you connect on a more human level with ‘followers’.
- Type of business: Although every business can receive positive attention from social marketing, certain businesses thrive in the medium. Your expectations should be tempered by standards set for by your industry. The entertainment industry flourishes on social media, while social accounts for local service companies may take a long time to gain traction.
RECOMMENDATION: If you haven’t already, create Twitter and Facebook accounts immediately (and YouTube, LinkedIn, etc.). At the very least, you will be able to reserve your business name and start using these accounts when you’re ready.