Make Social Media Work for You

When people travel to and from work it is common for you to see them with a phone in hand. On their phones or tablets they check Facebook for news feeds, they tweet what the weather or traffic is like, they upload new photos in Instagram or edit their profile in LinkedIn. More and more, social media is becoming part of everyday life and businesses today do not want to be left behind.

Start with determining who your target market is. Is your product for teens? Is your product for men 40 and above? Is your product for business owners? Once you have decided on your target market, find out where they “hang out” online. eBizMBA identified the top 15 most popular social network sites today. In order, these are Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Google Plus+, Tumblr, Instagram, VK, Flickr, Vine, Meetup, Tagged, ask.fm, meetme☺ and Classmates. Once you identify which site the majority of your customers will likely go, research what features on these sites will help you reel your customers in. For example, for Facebook, you can purchase Ad Placements for your business that will appear on the news feed and on the right column of Facebook. Based on a survey conducted by Nielsen, Facebook ads are able to reach 91% of its target market compared to 27% for other online advertising. Facebook also allows a separate page for businesses. Pick the creative people in your team to jazz up your Facebook business profile, so that people will be enticed to visit and check you out. You profile can include photos of your team, your workplace or photos from your company event.

Next is Twitter. Register.com shared five basic tips for using Twitter to grow your business. Start with setting up your Twitter account with a good description of your products or services. Once you have set up your account, look for your target customers and what they like talking about or what they like to share. When you follow a potential customer, usually, they will follow you back. This is how you will start building your network. Then, retweet posts that your potential customers tweet. Once in a while, add your own posts, like information on your new products or services or events of your company. Do this regularly, so that you can develop a steady stream of followers. Finally, don’t forget to post link to your website every now and then to get visitors to your site.

LinkedIn is also a great way for you to grow your business and to develop relationships with other entrepreneurs. Especially, if you are offering a service, being linked in LinkedIn will help your business go a long way. After building your profile, join groups in LinkedIn that are related to your business or your interests. Post comments on articles written by other members and from time to time, post your own articles or blogs. Of course, if you have an event, make sure to highlight it in your profile. You can also add your Twitter account in LinkedIn, so that your posts on LinkedIn will also show in Twitter. Talk about shooting two birds with one stone!

There are a lot of ways you can use social networks to grow your business. What are most important are: You know your customers, you spend time building and designing an attractive profile or page and you update your social network profiles regularly, so your customers will always have something to look forward to and be interested in. 

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