Social Media Marketing Tips

“Hi, nice to meet you. I’m Bob,” he said, flashing his winning smile. He shook my hand firmly and authoritatively. He exuded the confidence and charm of leadership.

“I know,” I replied. (Was this a faux pas?) “We follow each other on Faceboook and Twitter. I’ve enjoyed the exchanges we’ve had.”

I was being sincere. We have exchanged numerous “@ each other” exchanges on Twitter and have posted a number of times on one another’s Facebook pages.

He grinned and said, “Oh that stuff. I don’t know much about that social media crap. I outsource that to someone in the Philippines. I just send him money every month and he does all that for me. He’s great, isn’t he?”

Yup. Sure fooled me. I smiled back, making a mental note that this man is a “virtual fraud”.

Outsourcing for a business or an organization is one thing. But if you are the business, then you need to use your smarts and business savvy when it comes to using social networking to promote your business – and yourself. Here are some tips to help you be real – and really successful – when it comes to social media:

1. Avoid saying that social media is “crap” to other entrepreneurs. Once you’ve had a lead or two (or more) from using social media, you’ll understand the potential. Dismissing the value of social media shows a lack of understanding of its value, positioning you as someone who may be out of touch with 21st century ways of doing business.

2. Emphasize the “social” aspect of online interactions. Interact, make comments, share stuff, offer help and give referrals. Blatant promotion of you and your terrific services and products gets tiresome.

3. Reciprocity rules in the online world. Say thank you when someone else re-tweets, re-posts or otherwise sends traffic your way. Alternately, share something of theirs – a post, a tweet or a resource. People stop sharing your stuff if you never acknowledge them.

4. If you outsource your personal social media to someone, don’t let on that you’re not really who you say you are on line. Don’t brag that you’re not the one out there putting in the time to make connections and have interactions with real humans who might one day shake your hand. It could cost you a real, live reputation for honesty.

5. Outsourcing your personal social media interactions may work for presidents of countries or rock stars, but if you’re a regular business person with only a modicum of fame and fortune, be real. Being real results in real connections, which leads to real success.

APA Citation: Eaton, S.E. (1 January 2011). Five Tips for Marketing Success with Social Media.

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