The Oxford definition of Social Media is:
Websites and applications that enable users to create and share content or to participate in social networking. “Social networking sites also called social software and social media, provide the means to create and maintain ties online.”
For the online marketer or business person, it is crucial that you understand this with the emphasis on social networking.
Your presence in the social media world has the potential to exponentially increase your business. However, your credibility is the key. And by credibility, I am referring to the trust your connections online have in not only your product but more importantly in YOU.
The great thing about social media is that it presents you with multiple ways to build that trust. That being said it is important that you learn all the many ways that you can accomplish this. Build your brand, your image.
There are more and more avenues that people flock to called social media.
The giants for social networking :
And for photo sharing:
Then there’s video Sharing:
Or Blog creation:
For finding those who may be able to contribute to your cause there is:
And then if you are trying to link them all together there is:
When you look at all these it seems to be an undoubting task. Wanting to grow your business but being overwhelmed with all the platforms the world now has access to.
Where do you start? How do you start?
Well, the first suggestion is to pick one or two platforms to start with. This is a common suggestion for all business people as you cannot be an expert with all of the platforms at once. Choose the one or two that resonate with you. Understand them and start building your business with them.
More often than not, it is recommended that Facebook, Instagram, twitter be your starting point…. In actuality when you have established a presence on these platforms the others can naturally fall into place. Even finding others who can work them for you.
Get collected with your information: personal and business as the social aspect will require both. Gather photos and content that are not only meaningful but will garner interaction with your followers/audience. Be honest, truthful with your posts/pins/stories. Be energetic, thought provoking, inventive. Create visually appealing photos or graphics that stimulate thought. And repeat the process.
As you post, be sure you have the back links in place that will take those who interact to where you want them to go. Have your website complete.
Be sure that it is professionally done and user friendly. Your content on your website
is not the only thing that is important however. The reason for the person who is taken there must be congruent with your message…. A person looking for and reacting to a post on dog care, should not be taken to a site that is for weight loss or music lessons….. and so forth. You need to build trust with your users. Be transparent.
Your users/ followers will want to know you, what are your likes, dislikes and so forth so do not be that dreaded sales person we all try to avoid when we walk into a store. Nurture them and create a curiosity with what you do.
Guide them to being curious about what you do… let them be the one who wants to know more… comment on their comments, but while being truthful avoid being too critical. You may want to weed out the ones who could create more harm than good for you , but be diplomatic.
Most of all, Social Media is just that, people wanting to be social so have fun.
If you really want to grow your presence on the internet try to avoid political issues as no matter what side you take you are bound to alienate the other side. Unless that is intentional.
Some causes may just be what you need, and the alienation is not a bad thing…for example Abused Animals, however always be professional…. Remember your credibility depends on it.