Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, LinkedIn and Google+. What are all of these names and how can they help me promote my business or organization? I am sure most of you have used or at least heard of one of these social networking sites.
Using social media to promote your business or organization truly has become a way of life. I do understand that for many this world can be overwhelming and I am certainly no expert; but using social media and the online opportunities available to you can really make a difference in promoting your business or organization, events, products and services available.
Using social media is an inexpensive way to promote your business or organization and to keep new and existing customers chatting about you. I would suggest that if you are new to social media or are uncomfortable with all of the aspects to choose one (Facebook would be my recommendation) and focus your efforts on that particular social network. You can also attend seminars on using social media.
Here is some general information as well as some great tips for using some of today’s most popular social networking sites.
Facebook: Set up a page on Facebook. This is a great place to post promotions, specials and news on a regular basis to all those who like your page. Ask questions on your page about the products or services you offer. Suggest that people provide you with comments and suggestion as well as share pictures. You can also have contests, share updates from your business or organization, share links to blogs or articles, create events to invite subscribers to and more.
Facebook provides a wonderful forum to have conversations with your consumers on a regular basis. On Facebook people like your page.
Twitter: Use Twitter to tweet about your business or organization. Share interesting facts; provide links to information on your products or services and share short tips how to best use your products or services. On Twitter you have followers.
LinkedIn: You can create a LinkedIn profile and add links to your website, update your profile with new links, information on products, articles or other information to all the people in your network. You can also join LinkedIn groups that may be popular with your customers. You will have the ability to post questions and comments on related information. Ask your customers, vendors, or other business associations in your network questions, recommendations, and share comments and concerns. You can also search the answers section on LinkedIn and look for questions that you can answer related to your business or are of expertise. LinkedIn is also used as a social networking site for business professionals.
Google+: Create circles in your Google+ profile that are set up specifically for your customers, your vendors and others interested in your business or organization. Post interesting content to customer and other business related circles. Encourage feedback and comments. Content can include blog posts, articles, product reviews, specials, promotions and other offers or exciting news. You can start a hangout which is a multiuser chat tool. This can be used to solicit feedback from customers.
YouTube: Create a YouTube channel for your business or organization. You can add fun and useful videos and encourage customers to share the videos with others. You can have video contests and have customers show you how they use your products or services. You could also ask customers to submit video testimonial and post them on your YouTube Channel.
No matter what social networking sites you are using, be sure to have promotional materials and signs at your place of business showcasing the sites you are using and suggesting to others to like or follow your business. In addition include this information in any print, online, TV, or radio advertisements you are placing. You can access logos online for all the social networking sites to use in promotional materials.
Certainly every business or organization needs to have an online presence in some capacity. I certainly suggest all businesses and organizations having a website and using one social media account as long as you are able to be an active user and update information on a regular basis.
In addition there are some other online sites that you could use to promote your business. I suggest checking these sites out and look at adding them in addition to social media into your marketing plan. Living Social, Jump On It, Expedia, Bruce and Hobbes Daily Deals and many more. In addition online advertising with media outlets including newspapers, radio, TV and others are options certainly worth exploring to drive visits to your website and business.
I will end this month’s article by saying don’t worry if you are uneasy about using a social networking site. Come to one of the seminars the chamber will be offering on social media or stop into the chamber office for guidance. We would be even happy to help you get started. And yes there can be negative aspects of using social media. Be sure to respond to all comments both positive and negative but do not get into arguments. Stay positive! As in everything it is important to be careful about the information you are sharing.
Some of the content included in this Chamber Connection was provided from an online article titled “Using Social Media to Promote Your Business” by Shannon Below and Joel Elad.
To learn more about the Ticonderoga Area Chamber of Commerce visit www.ticonderogany.com or visit us at 94 Montcalm Street, Suite 1 in downtown Ticonderoga.
Please feel free to stop by to share your ideas, concerns, thoughts and positivity with me. You can also reach me at 585-6619 or directly at email@example.com. I encourage you to all become a fan of the Ticonderoga Area Chamber of Commerce on Facebook to stay up to date with news, events, see photos and more.
The Ticonderoga Area Chamber of Commerce is a private not-for-profit organization that serves, markets and promotes the Ticonderoga area including, Ticonderoga, Crown Point, Hague, Moriah and Putnam. For more information on the Ticonderoga Area Chamber of Commerce, please visit www.ticonderogany.com, “Like” the chamber on Facebook or follow TiconderogaADK on twitter.
Matthew Courtright is executive director of the Ticonderoga Area Chamber of Commerce.