Expand your audience; try using Social Media

Social-MediaSo now that you have your website up and running it’s time to move on to social media. But wait, why social media?

  • Social media provides additional exposure for your business. With so much being published on the Internet now, it’s very difficult for your website to be found through just direct search. Social media gives you another way.  All social media sites have some way to pass your story on.  Likes, comments and shares spread the news about your content.
  • Social media can become another landing page for you. For example, with Facebook you can insert an image and under the image you can hide a link to a landing page on your website. Click on the image and you arrive at your website. All social media pages have similar features.
  • They give you an attractive way to advertise your business. Again, Facebook has some affordable ways for you to give your business a boost and in fact,  has its own advertising scheme.
What are the most visited Social Media sites?

Facebook is celebrating its 10th birthday this year and boasts 2.0 billion monthly active users.  It is growing 15% per year and is too big to ignore.  More than 1 million small or medium sized businesses advertise here.

Twitter is the second largest social media site with over 320 million monthly active users.  It has the unique advantage of being the easiest way to see what’s going on in the world in real time.  It is truly international in that 79 percent of its users live outside the US.  Tweets are used to broadcast information with hashtags (#) included to indicate a connection to specific topics.

Google+ has 300 million active monthly users signed up but they are not nearly as active as the other social media sites.

LinkedIn has 400 million users but just 25% of those users log in each month for a 100 million monthly active user count.  LinkedIn is effective in building professional networks and engaging with others.

YouTube has 6 billion hours of video watched per month.  One billion videos are watched over mobile phones daily.  It allows businesses to create video channels to promote their brands.

Pinterest has 100 million monthly active users, 80% of whom are female.  Pinterest is a great choice for B2C businesses.

People use social media for entertainment, so lighten up!
  •  Use images: put the social in social media. Images catch the eye of a person browsing her social media feed and instantly you have her attention.  Images not only make for lighter pages they also quickly convey an idea.  In the early twentieth century when advertising was just starting an often heard phrase was “One picture is worth a thousand words.”  It’s still true today.  Use images of your staff, enthusiastic customers, but not the cat that plays the piano.  Use content appropriate images to delight your visitors while telling your story.
  • Facebook has likes, comments and shares. Twitter has #hashtags.  LinkedIn has groups.  YouTube has teaching opportunities.  All are ways to get your business noticed.  Each is different and will work differently for you.  Utilize the strength of each platform to your advantage.  A handy reference for maximizing the value of social media is socialmediaexaminer.com
  • Social media is about building community. Write your content as if you were talking directly to your visitor.  Imagine you are having a cup of coffee and he asked you “tell me about your business”.  Tell him what you know that may be helpful TO HIM.  Tell her in conversational language but include a link to your website that will provide more information if she wants it.  No Sales Pressure allowed here!
  • All social media pages have some type of group structure. Join those that you are interested in with the intent of participating and contributing.  Then follow through.  Get to know members of the group.  Help them where you have a chance with a like or a share or a retweet and you will receive the same in return.  Eventually it is perfectly OK to ask them to link to your website.  External links play a major role in Google’s ranking of your site.

A well planned and well executed social media strategy can get you referrals, portray you as an industry expert and make it easy to get others to link to your website.  Search engines used to be the primary way to drive traffic to your website.  Social networks now have become a greater source of referrals and they increase the time a visitor spends on your website.

Which social media sites do you use?

 

 

 

 

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