Today is one of those days where I’m going to step out of the norm and touch on the subject of social media and specifically social media madness.
Let me first say this – I’m no social media ‘expert’, yet… But I have studied, tested some, used different channels and followed a few of the top marketers on the web who specialize in social media.
So I continue to learn, test and be open minded to all things social and since I’m not your typical type that loves socializing, this topic is one that takes more work than others.
This leads me to the guts of my post today…
Social media has a strong foothold on the web today. There’s no arguing this fact.
What has yet to be seen is monetizing social media and that’s where the madness comes into play. Because more and more businesses are spending time and money on social media, yet do they have a real plan or understand how to monetize their efforts?
This is where testing comes in and in my opinion not enough small businesses test or survey enough when it comes to online and offline marketing.
Test, Test, Test…
My first social media test proved that the book marking sites like Digg and StumbleUpon, along with help from Twitter, will work if you create the right content and know how to post it.
Since I’m a firm believer that one should work in his or her strength areas and leave the rest to others, I actually hired a ‘social media specialist’ who was really a Facebook specialist at the time and pretty good at it.
This person was good at connecting and we learned together about the other social media outlets while I footed the bill.
This was an expensive test for me but turned out to be well worth it, because it taught me the value in the other social media sites outside of FB and TW. Plus it showed me the power of using FB for tele-seminars and future webinars.
As a small business person you always need to be looking at ways to increase sales while retaining customers and clients. Social media can work for you especially if you understand how each of these outlets work.
They are all unique and different so you have to understand how they function and best suite your needs.
After all, you are in business to make a profit and the last thing you want to do is waste precious time posting, tweeting, re-tweeting, posting some more, only to find yourself in a spiraling cycle.
You can post on as many walls as you want, tweet till the cow’s come home, and post article after article. But in the end ( or whatever time frame you determine), if you ain’t makin’ any money and new clients or customers are not coming your way, then you are simply wasting your time.
1. Have a plan for your social media endeavors. This means you’ll need to determine how each outlet is going to work for your business. DO NOT WING IT!
2. If you choose to hire a social media expert, make sure he or she knows how to each and every social media channel and have proven results with existing or past clients.
3. Study the best of the best and learn from their mistakes.
4. Test, Test, Test and continue to test and survey your prospects and clients.
5. Track your results and adjust your plan accordingly.
Ok – off my soap box.
Tomorrow we’ll return with our regularly scheduled program of posts having to do with small business marketing, sales and client retention.
PS – If your small business is struggling to increase sales and revenues, contact The SmallBiz Mechanic.