If your small business is not taking full advantage of what social media has to offer, there is still time to right the ship and set sail for a better networking and marketing strategy.
As more and more companies come to learn about social media, more are seeing how its usage can propel their small businesses to better networking opportunities with both current and potential customers.
That being said, there are some items to remember in order to best utilize social media to your company’s advantage.
On the plus side, your company should consider:
- Putting together a solid social network – It is important to put together a solid following on sites such as Twitter and Facebook, but make sure you have followers and friends that mean something to your business. To just rack up large numbers of both really doesn’t do the company good at the end of the day. You want quality followers and friends, and ones at that who you will interact with on a regular basis;
- Making sure you are blogging too – With a quality blog in place on your Web site, you reach more individuals and inform them of what your company offers. The key here, though, is making sure the blog is continuously updated. If the blog is just sitting there unattended, why did you start it in the first place? Fresh content is key;
- Engaging with others – If you’re looking for a winning social media strategy share and engage with others on sites such as Twitter and Facebook. When someone tweets or shares something about your company, be sure to do likewise for them. The social networking idea is just that, networking with others;
- Monitor your SM presence – With different monitoring tools available to record your SM efforts, be sure to take advantage of them. The tools can help you in pointing out who is interested in your products and services, their specific demographics, and more;
On the negative side, your company should be wary of:
- Spamming social sites – For rather obvious reasons, spamming on social sites is a no-no. Your company sees its credibility factor drop and search engines will not view this move very kindly. Make sure any social media efforts are geared away from spamming so that your company does not take a hit;
- Being out of the loop – Your social media campaign needs to be consistent, not here and there. Without a constant presence on sites like Twitter and Facebook, you run the risk of becoming irrelevant in the eyes of both current and potential customers, along with search engines;
- Avoiding a bad online reputation – Given that many consumers will take to company Web sites to address product matters, customer service issues etc. it is important your online reputation is as strong as possible. Make sure that any disagreements with customers etc. are handled in a professional and timely manner;
- Don’t keep endlessly climbing – Yet another thing to avoid is just going after the well-to-do social media profiles. Customers come in all shapes and sizes on social media, so don’t forget the little guy.
While your company’s social media campaign is going to hit some bumps in the road along the way, the fact that you are engaged in SM in the first place is a good thing.
Take the time whether through in-house or outside efforts to strengthen your company’s SM performance and the results will be there for you.
Dave Thomas, who covers among other subjects’ HR Software, writes extensively for Business.com, an online resource destination for businesses of all sizes to research, find, and compare the products and services they need to run their businesses.