Jennifer Palais is back with her monthly organizing column! She runs Palais Professional Organizer and is basically my hero because I think you all know I have issues on that front… She’s bringing you the 411 on social networking and how to make it work for you.
Can you get on the Yellow Brick Road using social media marketing? You can! If you’ve been struggling to use social media in your business in an enjoyable, organized and profitable way check these tips will help pave the way.
If you are new to using social media as part of your marketing plan and it has felt like being in the eye of a tornado you aren’t alone. You are actually just in the eye of another “T” word organizers and their clients run headlong into all the time.
Business owners most often come to me when they are in the middle of the whirlwinds of transition. Everything is spinning around them as a result of changing office space, moving to a home office, adding staff, losing staff, changing business models or perhaps – expanding upon their marketing plan by adding social media. The “how-things-work-around-here”are in major flux. Are you finding yourself in the eye of a storm?
If so, have a seat on the circle rug, it is story time.
Once, there was a little girl who had a business. She needed to market it and everyone said that social media was the golden path in the new economy. She set out upon it with some friends and here is what she learned.
1. The Yellow Brick Road. We have to have a plan to make it to the Emerald City. Social media is many things but it is not a get rich quick channel. It is part of our whole marketing plan and can quite possibly be our new business model depending on the business.
Social media offers a lot of opportunity but it takes work (like anything else), consistency and a plan to yield results. Once you get into the flow it can also be a lot of fun! 30 minutes a day in the beginning is a good goal.
2. Scarecrow, let’s use our smarts!
a. Figure out where your potential customers hang out and use those platforms first. If you aren’t sure, do some research or ask others in your field who have been using social media for awhile. You may just need to experiment.
b. Be consistent. If you are having trouble showing up daily or throughout the day use Hootsuite.com to schedule regular and future posts. People will be more likely to engage with you if they see you are available for a conversation.
c. Social media is a part of our overall marketing strategy so we want to make sure what we are saying and doing there fits into the rest of our business and marketing plan. If you are launching a summer promotion in your brick and mortar store – make sure to promote it on Twitter or Facebook. You can also do a separate promotion just to your social media followers to show your appreciation to them. You’ll know exactly where they came from when they call and will help grow your audience.
3. Tinman, we have a heart – let’s connect to it! As much as we are representing our businesses online we are still human beings. It is ok to be vulnerable, have opinions and passions. It is important in social media to remember that we are communicating not as a “corporation” but as ourselves. Not to thousands of people, but to one person at a time. It is just a conversation. From us, to that one other person who is responding to us in the moment. The more connected we can be the better it will go for us in our social media marketing. Have a heart, be real, connect and communicate in a true way. Showing we care and are passionate about what we do and who our clients are is professional. It may sound a little “squishy” but, at the heart of it, people want to work with other people, not with a stiff, stodgy “brand.”