Is it possible for a company to engage in too much social media?
This is a tough question, but a simple answer would be, “yes.” A company can quickly spiral into a social media tailspin if proper planning and implementation isn’t done. Off the top of my head I can name almost 10 popular social media outlets including: blogs, tumblr, posterous, facebook, twitter, youtube, linkedin, foursquare, gowalla, myspace (jk 😀 ), and there are plenty more. One day this list will be completely out of date as new ideas shift and mold this new era of online advertising.
There is absolutely no practical reason for any company to engage in social media unless you have a war room with multiple bloggers and social media experts full time on staff. If you’re a small business putting your foot in the water to see if its warm before jumping in, believe me when I say the water is warm and come on in.
Your first step into social media for 2011 should be creating a facebook page for your business. By doing this, you will reserve your name on facebook and even if you dont do anything with it for the time being, no other company can snatch this up. Companies are grabbing up facebook names much quicker than companies were even grabbing domain names in the 90’s. By reserving your name now, you can avoid worrying about it in the future.
Additionally, take a quick look at other forms of advertising. more and more companies are referring customers to their facebook page in advertising before sending them to their home page. They want to be followed via facebook so they can push content to their customers in the future. This is vital for your online marketing success. If you were to go to a company website, there is no guarantee that you’ll ever return. By becoming a fan or friend on facebook. They gain access to being able to advertise in the future.
Add a facebook link to every page on your website (usually in the header or footer
In a nut shell, facebook is a non invasive way a business can engage potential and returning customers to help grow your business through many other forms of advertising.
Okay, so you have your facebook page reserved and your family and friends have started following you.. It’s now time to create a blog. It is important to have the blog running through your domain. After creating a blog, you can provide up to date content about your business. You can talk about local events, concerns, causes, etc. You can really do whatever you want with your blog. But you’re creating fresh content that will be featured on your website. This will tell the search engines to keep coming back to see what has changed, and it will also provide content to start updating your facebook with updates about your company. You are now using your blog and facebook in tandem and have made a big step into your social media presence.
It is very important to remember that once you create a blog, it is vital to continue to update your blog at least once a month no matter what. I recommend updating your blog at least once a week, but in the beginning you may not have enough time to do this on a regular basis. If you don’t update at a minimum of once a month it is more beneficial to avoid having a blog all together. Inconsistent, outdated, or rarely updated content is worse than no content at all. Your website will look like an impractical unreliable ghost town, and can hurt your business prospects.
Add a Blog link next to your facebook links
Okay, you have your blog and facebook. People are following you and you’re updating content weekly. You’re seeing growth of 1 to 2 followers a week and a couple people are ‘liking’ your posts. Now its time to go out and buy an inexpensive Video Camera and post some videos. Videos are very very hot in the SEO and Social landscape right now. Google loves videos and gives preferential treatment to this content and you can leverage Youtube as a social source for products. I recommend creating a short video (60 – 90 seconds) once a month talking about a product, service, or anything your company offers. Focus on value, and create a sense of expertise within your industry. You can now edit these videos for free with included software on a mac or pc. Do a couple takes, splice together a short spot and put it on youtube and link to if from both your blog and facebook. It doesnt have to be perfect, but it will still get much more exposure than anything you’ve blogged thus far. The followers will start flowing in.
If you have capital, I recommend going through a video production company. Spend a day and tape as many videos as possible 5-10 at least. then update bi monthly or monthly and watch the visits start trickling in.
Add a youtube link next to your social links
I will discuss twitter and linkedin and some final strategies early next week!