This is the second in a 10 part series. You may read Step #1 here.
There are literally hundreds and hundred of social media platforms. There are so many option that companies exist, knowem.com for example, that for $649 will complete 300 social media profiles for you.
So where do you start?
Step #2 – B2Bs should participate in Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn at a minimum.
The primary way that LinkedIn can help you is by giving your organization exposure to its millions of users. In addition, LinkedIn offers a plethora of options that will help raise awareness of your organization, such as profiles with custom pages, specific industry-related groups, Q&A forums, and the ability to link back to your website and other social networking sites.
LinkedIn provides analytics on who has viewed your profile and, based on your current connections, will recommend additional connections. LinkedIn offers advertising that allows you to target your audience and control budget costs through duration of ad runs and a defined daily budget.
LinkedIn allows connections to go further than a simple like and share – it provides a customer recommendation feature that allows people to endorse your products and services.
A simple but often overlooked benefit of LinkedIn is that all contact information is maintained by individual users, that is if their phone number or address changes they will update LinkedIn to reflect those changes which means that contact information on LinkedIn is far more up-to-date than a contact list that you would maintain on your own.
Twitter is a free real-time social networking site where users can exchange “tweets” (public instant messages) of up to 140 characters. Twitter allows you to share links, stories, update, announcements, events, and more.
Signing up for Twitter is a free, relatively simple process. It’s a good idea to have a short description of your company and the logo or photo you’d like to use for your profile.
Companies use Twitter to follow customers, constituents, prospects, news and media outlets, celebrities, brands, friends and family members. Twitter thrives on interaction between its users. And while it may take some time to get used to communicating in just 140 characters, you’ll soon come to master the brevity that Twitter requires.
Twitter is a great way to share information with your company’s network. Start by tweeting helpful tips, answer questions and even engage in one-on-one conversations.
Let your key audiences know you are participating in Twitter by including a Twitter button (along with other Social Media accounts) on your website and in your email signature. Be sure to follow people who are important to your organization, very often, they will follow you back.
Over time, your followers will grow and your organization will benefit from the extended exposure your Twitter community can offer.
Like all Social Media, Facebook is first and foremost a place to socialize. But Facebook can also be a great place to develop customer and prospect relationships that can lead to additional business. The trick is to communicate as you would at a networking event rather than overly sales driven approach.
The Power of Facebook
There are 1 billion people using Facebook who update, comment or “like” an average of 3.2 billion times per day. Within the United States, 20% of all Internet page views occur on Facebook. And 80% of U.S. social network users prefer to use Facebook to connect to brands.
We simply can’t ignore the draw of Facebook, and good marketing instincts would be to participate where our customers and prospects prefer to virtually congregate.
If you provide a steady stream of interesting and compelling content on your Facebook page, you’ll soon begin developing an ever-increasing community of fans. The larger your Facebook community, the more people will be exposed to your brand and your updates.
Good Content is Key
First and foremost deliver content that addresses your customers’ pain points: things that they are likely to be struggling with on a regular basis. While the solution to the pain may be your products or services, it could also be tools and services you’ve discovered and use.
Pay attention to what your community is talking about. People don’t participate in Social Media to be ignored. Share updates that your customers have posted if it would be of interest to others in your community. It’s a small gesture, but it shows that you are willing to help them spread the word.
Facebook metrics show that pictures get 120% more engagement. Use that to your advantage. Look for ways to convey your message in a visual format: photos, charts, and infographics.
If you want your ideal prospects to be regularly engaged with your page, be sure you’re regularly engaged with your page. Add new updates on a consistent basis to ensure that you’ll appear in news feeds. Closely monitor your page for comments and if someone posts or comments – respond promptly.
Your Facebook page is an excellent way to gain visibility for your brand and build a loyal and enthusiastic community of customers and advocates.