I wanted to give a jump start to people’s week. As Sunday is usually a day when you start to plan for the week ahead take a look at some powerful tools you can use from social networking sites that will enable you to be more efficient and effective in your business this week. Here are 10 reasons why business social networking benefits your overall marketing strategy. When you use them, it could make your marketing near close to paradise.
10 Business Social Networking Benefits
1. Provide amazing content that your prospects would never look at face to face.
Ever hand someone a brochure and just see their eyes glaze over? You can write an article or blog post that people can read when they have a chance, and not with Johnny on the Spot showing them their flashiest company literature with one interesting article to pique your interest among a large number of fluff pieces. Now you can put content online that will intrigue your prospects and have them to come to you when they are ready.
2. Tired of cold calling?
I mean, throw the phone against the wall type of cold calling! Then it is time for you to start meeting people. Why? Because your customers are there. According to Wikipedia, there are 400 Million people on Facebook, 130 Million on MySpace, 75 Million on Twitter, and 70 Million on LinkedIn. Please tell me you can find at least one person to buy your products or services on one of these sites. The odds are in your favor. In fact, you probably have a greater chance of closing your eyes and finding a client through social networking than being hit by lightning.
3. Establish your brand.
It used to be a local shopkeeper would put up a sign so people would know what they sold. They would look to fill a niche, such as a blacksmith, grocery store owner, etc and just put the name of the city in front of their industry. That was all people needed to know. Unfortunately, that is no longer the case. We now need to compete with the myriad of different businesses out there. That means that establishing your name on social networking is not just about prospecting, but about people knowing your name wherever they look. This means we must establish a marketing presence on a number of social networks.
4. Streamline your business processes.
Whether you like or dislike Google, you have to admit they have an amazing array of online business tools to make your company more effective. For example, I have started migrating a lot of my power-points to Google Presentation. My LinkedIn profile has a Google Presentation on it. My webinars usually run off Google Presentation. That is only one example of a wide range of products, such as Google Alerts, Analytics, Webmaster tools and more. Note: 9/22/19 I rarely use Google Presentation. However, services like Zoom are great for remote webinars and training with prospects and current clients.
5. Create a closer team environment at your office.
When people are able to use interactive tools, such as communicating quickly on Twitter with a co-worker at another office they start developing a closer relationship, since they are in closer contact and have a greater opportunity to know that person. Let employees utilize social networking to communicate with each other as long as it does not interfere with their productivity. Talking to other employees about the challenges of the business=good. Finding out what Lady Gaga did yesterday and how the Palin marriage will actually turn out=bad.
6. Beat your competitors.
In some industries, there has been a low social networking adoption rate. Now there are some industries that will never be fully able to adopt web marketing practices. For example, due to the slew of regulations financial professionals have to very careful about what they say. That said, there are more reasons for most professions to go on than not. One group that I have noticed that is slow to go on are attorneys. Not surprisingly they are debating among themselves what they can and can not do. As someone who is not an attorney, I say go online and use common sense marketing practices (contact your attorney if you have any legal issues). Other than that, beat your competitors and get into social networking.
7. Increase your referral network.
Compared to number 6, one of the early social networking adopters were people in the real estate industry. Clamoring for a way to grow their business, they turned to social networking to add business (I speak from experience here) and learned that it was not always about finding clients. As a mortgage broker, I made more Realtor connections in the last 6 months I was in the business than the previous 4 and 1/2 previous. Business from these sources was great. Unfortunately, the banks did not believe in closing most of these deals. That is a story for another time. Back to the referral network, look for your power partners online and you will be amazed at the connections you will make.
8. Positive people are great! Business social networking benefits your personal well-being
A side effect of using social media is that I get a daily dose of positive energy from different people in my network. The amazing nuggets of information that I receive from them every day inspire me to greater heights. While this is not strictly speaking business-related, there is no harm in receiving a daily dose of inspiration to start your day.
9. Give back to your network.
It is no longer acceptable to just take, take, take in business. You should do your best to give back. I do my best to connect two people every day who could help each other’s business. Half of the time these people will probably never give me business. Why do I do this? Because, there are so many people who help me out on a regular basis with my business, if I can just help some of these people back it will make me feel that I am making a difference. I know that I am not able to help everybody all of the time, and at the same time the more I help a few people the more the good deeds will spread.
10. Find employees and partners through social networking.
LinkedIn has long been hailed as a great place to discover new employees. The LinkedIn profile/resume lends to recruiting. Recently, however, Facebook and Twitter have started to get more active in that arena as well. Recruiters and companies are already on there, so it only makes sense that people will be looking to make business connections there as well.
Bonus: Social Networking allows you to go the extra mile by providing additional information for your prospects and current clients.
Final Thoughts on Business Social Networking Benefits
So now that you know what the benefits of social networking are, it is time for you to go out there and start using it. Do not implement all of the ideas listed above here at once. Instead, take one or two that you really like and start with those. You can always add additional concepts later. The main idea is to just get started and take advantage of the benefits of using social networking for your business today.