23 Jun Using Social Networking Websites to Promote Your B2B or B2C
Social Networking strategy is building engagement between you and a prospects
Social networking websites or social media. The goal of most business owners is to make money. This often results with the selling of a particular product or service. However, to sell that product or service business owners need to alert the general public. Customer cannot buy a product or a service if they do not know that it exists. That is why, as a business owner, you need to advertise your business.
When it comes to advertising there are many business owners who literally cringe. Are you doing this now? There is a good chance that you are because many advertising methods cost money. As a business owner you want to make money not spend it, right? Unfortunately, if you believe that all forms of advertising take money, you are sadly mistaken. Although you may have to spend money to make your business what you want it to be, there are ways to promote your business and the products or services that you sell without having to spend any money at all.
Is your curiosity peaked yet? There is a good chance that it is, rightfully so. One of the ways that you can promote your online business, without having to spend too much, is by using something that is readily available online. That thing is an online social networking websites or social media. A massive number of internet users, in fact billions of them, belong to at least one or two social networking website.
When it comes to social networking, there are many individuals who think of online friendships or online relationships. While these types of relationships are the most common, did you know that social networking is also used for businesses? In fact, that was originally how social networking got started. If you are a small business owner, especially one that operates an online business, there is a way that you can use social networking sites to your advantage. A key element in any social media strategy is building engagement between you and a prospects.
Although social networking websites are traditionally focused on those that would like to make online friends or develop online relationships, there are networking sites that are designed for business owners. These websites will not only allow you to share your business information with other business owners, but it will also allow you to develop close relationships with those that share an interest that is similar to yours. Essentially, this means that you could not only learn valuable business information, but you could also walk away with a new business partner or a new friend.
As previously mentioned, social networking websites with a focus on businesses, are a great way to promote your business. However, this does not mean that you should completely forget about the other online social networking websites, the ones that are designed to make online friendships. Although you may not learn any valuable business leads by joining Facebook or Twitter, you may be able to get new customers and new customers is exactly what your business should want and need.
If you are looking to join an online community, you will need to create your own profile or profile page. If you are planning on joining a traditional social networking website, to gain access to millions of potential new customers, you are urged to be careful when making your online webpage or profile. One thing that internet users hate is being solicited for business. This does not mean that you cannot use social networking to your advantage; it just means that you need to be careful with how you do it. Before creating a Facebook profile page for your business, you are advised to make one individual page for yourself first, but, of course, you will want to include information on your business. Company can also set up group.
By joining a social networking website, especially one that is popular and has a large number of members, you should be able to generate interest in your business, including the products or services that you sell. Who knows, but that interest generated could turn into sales; thus making your social networking experience more than worth it.
Building Traffic with Social Media or Social Networking Websites
First, let’s take a look at different social platforms and talk about how you can use each one to build traffic to your blog or website.
Facebook – the largest of all social media platforms with over 800 Million users. Facebook connects “friends” who share information by posting to their wall. Companies can set up fan pages to share information (companies can’t have individual pages, called profile pages). Companies can also set up groups.
From a business perspective, you can get users to “Like” you — become a fan of your company — or join your group. Then, everything you post might show up on their wall to view and share with their friends. I say might show up because Facebook decides you’ll be bored if you see everything your friends and companies you like post, so it only shows you some — those who do a good job of engaging users. So, a key element in any social media strategy is building engagement.
Twitter – the second largest social platform is a micro blogging site with a 140 character limit. Its main value is the public nature of tweets and their searchability via # (hashtags). Basically users Tweet news, information, pictures, links … to their followers. Once a user has a large number of people they follow, the twitter stream (flow of tweets) is so fast users can’t possibly read everything. Users create lists to manage the flow and may only read tweets from users and certain lists.
When users find something interesting or valuable, they can ReTweet it to their followers. Thus, messages sent through Twitter can spread pretty far, pretty fast — This is called viral marketing and can happen anywhere, but is likely on open networks like Twitter and YouTube.
The business strategy for building traffic to your blog using Twitter is to both gather a large number of followers (preferably in your target market), tweet interesting things they want to share, and engaging them to follow your links, etc.
Not all Twitter users are created equal and Klout is a mean for identifying influential Tweeters. You can cultivate relationships with these influential tweeters to build traffic to your blog. Sometimes businesses offer free product, free meals, or other incentives to influential tweeters in the hope they will review the product, restaurant, etc.
YouTube and Flickr – these are video-based and image-based social platforms (respectively). Much like Twitter, these sites are open meaning anyone can see everything others have posted (a small number of videos and images are only distributed to select users). As with Twitter, there is the potential for videos and images to go viral — and spread far quickly.
Pinterest – please see post about this new phenomenal image-based social platform here: Is Pinterest Really Leading to Product Purchases?