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You have probably heard about social platforms and their great popularity all over the world. Maybe you have heard negative comments too – addiction to networking sites, plenty of wasted time, and controversies.

But if you look at these in a good light, you will see that they have advantages too, especially to individuals or organisations that wish to reach out to customers. If you have the same goal, check out the following statistics to discover social media’s great importance to you.

  • Around 62% of adults across the world use it.
  • The most famous Web activity is social networking.
  • Around 22% of the total time spent online is on network sites like Facebook, Pinterest, and Twitter.

As of 2012, these top portals produce amazing figures.

  • Facebook has approximately 901 million active users and 137.6 million unique views each month.
  • On average, a member spends 7 hours and 45 minutes on his or her Facebook page per month.
  • Twitter has an estimated 140 million active users with an average of 340 million tweets in a day.
  • YouTube gets 106.7 million unique visits every month and a user spends an average of 1 hour and 41 minutes watching videos.
  • It also receives 4 billion views in one day and ranks second among other search engines.
  • Google+ has more than 100 million active members

This data looks incredible! Now, find out the role of social media in small business management.

  • Around 53% of small enterprises use it.
  • An estimated 88% of business owners using it believe that exposure and visibility is the biggest advantage of joining the social bandwagon.
  • Approximately 4% of businesses are on Twitter, 15% are on LinkedIn, and 19% are on Facebook.

As you can see, many entrepreneurs are already joining online communities because they have seen the wonderful benefits of doing so. If you wish to keep up with the competition and avoid losing potential customers, you can take ideas from the following…

[heading color=”black”]SOCIAL MEDIA TIPS [/heading]

1. Create a Facebook Fan Page

Image Credit: Meng To

Create a Facebook Page to build a closer relationship with your audience and customers.

There is an emphasis on “fan page” because of its differences from a “profile page” in the sense that the latter is more for personal use, while the former is ideal for organisations (both profitable and non-profit) and brand marketing.

Additionally, you get fans (when people click on “Like”) rather than friends. And, when you have earned at least 25 fans, you can create a custom URL (i.e. http://www.facebook.com/companyname), which helps greatly in your search engine ranking and marketing campaign.

Once your page is up, take note of these strategies.

  • Upload photos and videos related to your business.
  • Share stories and accomplishments.
  • Post status updates, focusing on new promotions or fresh offers.
  • Use Facebook’s analytics data to know who are checking out your page.

2. Sign up on Google+

Google+ is about having great conversations. Share photos, videos, links, or anything else that’s on your mind. You can use the share box on any Google site or +1 buttons across the web. With circles, you can share some things with close friends, others with your family, and almost nothing with your boss.

When you already have created a page on google.com/+/business/, you can apply these techniques.

  • Share interesting information (e.g. educational insights, your ideas, and other people’s links) that promotes your brand and benefits the users at the same time.
  • Build trust by interacting with the members in your circles. Take time to respond to their comments or questions. You can also use the  +1 button to encourage user engagement.
  • Establish relevant communities through Hangouts and tailor these based on your business niche.
  • Always upload photos, videos, ebooks, and reports.

3. Join Twitter

Twitter is a real-time information network that connects you to the latest stories, ideas, opinions and news about what you find interesting. Simply find the accounts you find most compelling and follow the conversations. As of late, plenty of small businesses are spreading information about their offers on this networking site. So, create your own page too and then, apply these strategies.

  • Share fresh news about your company through tweets but make sure that you do not use up all 140 characters. This way, your followers have enough space for their comments in case they want to retweet your post.
  • Start a stream of conversation or trending topic by placing a hashtag (#) before a keyword or phrase (e.g. #socialmedia).
  • Take advantage of related tools to manage your page.

4. Connect with other professionals through LinkedIn

LinkedIn is the world’s largest professional network with over 120 million members and growing rapidly. LinkedIn connects you to your trusted contacts and helps you exchange knowledge, ideas, and opportunities with a broader network of professionals.

Specially created for business networking, combine your social media activities with the following:

  • Request “recommendations” and give your own too, so you can build credibility and encourage other individuals to promote your enterprise.
  • Form a group and begin discussions.
  • Share interesting content (i.e. videos and blog articles) and be noticed.
  • Synchronize your account to your Facebook and Twitter pages.

5. Blog

In simple terms, a blog is a web site, where you write stuff on an ongoing basis. Your blog is whatever you want it to be. There are millions of them, in all shapes and sizes, and there are no real rules. Establish a blog site apart from an official company website. By doing so, you can tackle informative topics related to your niche. As you are writing articles, remember these pointers.

  • Focus on subjects that relevant to your business or offers.
  • Integrate keywords but avoid stuffing.
  • Make it easy to share by putting social media buttons.
  • Be a guest writer on other blog sites.
  • Place a particular blog content link on your social updates.

If you are in need of a blogging platform, check out the following options:

So, there you have five fundamental social media strategies. As you can see, the tips are specific for each online community. The reason is that these all platforms (mentioned here) are among the biggest and most influential today. If you want your potential customers and Google to spot your business right away, get found on these sites.

To conclude this article, here is an essential tip – always update your profile pages. Enjoy building your connection!

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Posted by Emma Tomlinson

Emma Tomlinson is the Head of Retail at Smart Traffic, a fast-growing private technology company with a team of SEO content writers and technical resource specialists.

One Comment

  1. In support of Point #1 about creating a Facebook Page, the new business marketing platform for FB automates the process of creating and managing a professional page.

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