A lot has been written about social media networking over the past two years, but believe it or not, few home businesses are using this powerful business and marketing tool yet. Many people, because it is on the internet, shy away from it as if it were the plague."I am not a geek,"" people tell me. Well, we have "ungeeked the geek" for many small and home business owners, and made social media make sense to them.
But there are exceptions.I was talking with a business owner the other day and she made the comment, "I don’t go to those kinds of sites. I don’t have time to do that as my business is struggling and I need to go and find more customers."
That says it all.That shows a total lack of understanding of what social media/web 2.0 is really about, and what it can do for the average small business and home business—even on a local basis. If people really understood social media marketing, they would be running to the social media zone and staying there.
There is a lot of talk that it is not "proven" as it is too new and the jury is still out on it being a viable marketing process.I totally disagree. The social media network marketer is paving a path for those to follow through a jungle that has never been explored, nor walked. People like proof. People like results. But it is the social media marketer who will create the way that will birth new millionaires with business folks who do "get" the Web 2.0 world—which is actually not hard to understand.
If you can send an email, you can "do" social media network marketing. You can master Twitter, Facebook, Myspace, blogs, wikis, podcasts, article marketing, and all the other parts of the new media. Yes, there is a learning curve, and yes, it does take a little effort—but what doesn’t?We have expanded our business tremendously with social media tactics, and every day, we wake up with dozens of new leads for our training and consulting business in our email box. How would you like to have that happen to you?
It can. You can tap into an endless pool of leads that will just keep increasing, if you decide to jump into the social media zone. And we will be glad to teach you how to maximize your success with your social media efforts.All you need to do is make a decision that you will take the time and learn social media a little at a time, and study the culture and the processes of each website.
Here are 7 websites that you must register with to get started in social media if you have a small or home business. Each have tutorials or videos about how to use them properly, and there also is a lot of information on the web.
After learning how each site works, follow these 3 steps:
The main thing you need to do is connect with people on these sites, and become a friend with them. Most of these sites have a process to befriend folks. Follow their process. Sound easy enough? But there is a type of friend that we teach that you must become: an "Addition Friend." This is simply a friend that adds to people’s lives, not takes.
On the social media scene, most people are looking to enhance, increase and enlarge a part of their life. You must help them do that with connecting with them and showing them new information about what you do and how it can help them and change them for the better. It must not ever be a sales pitch, but simply information that will impact them enough so they may want to connect with you further. .If you are a real estate agent, give them info on the 5 Biggest mistakes made while buying a home. If you are a CPA, give them some info on the 3 biggest mistakes made on tax returns. If you are in skin care, give them the 7 best ways to keep your skin healthy. You get the idea. You can find this type of information all over the web. Just send them the web address (url) to the article or blog post with a short note saying you thought of them when you ran across this.
We call it "Connection Marketing" and it works when you allow it to. .CONNECT with the person --> CONNECT with their goals --> then CONNECT them to valuable information that will help them achieve them. Then most of the people will connect with your interests and be willing to help you with yours.
Talk about them, and how you can help them reach their goals and dreams—either with what you do, or with what you know. We call it "Comfortable Conversation." You must hold online "conversations" with people and get them comfortable with you, and comfortable with staying connected with you. You do this by talking about what they are interested in, and then you prove to them you are serious about adding value to their life.It is all about value in the social media arena. People expect value in your messages and communication, and if you give them things that will help them in their endeavors, (blog posts on their industry, articles on doing what they do better, etc.) they will get very comfortable with you, and even help you with your endeavors.
That is the secret to success in social media marketing. We call it the "TIO Factor." Take It Offline and let the personalization begin. You have connected with the person—in person, at least in voice.Once you have gotten them comfortable with you by your interest in helping them achieve their goals, now you must construct a path that allows you to say, "What is your contact number? I would love to chat with you over the phone." Then just do that. It may take a few days or a couple of weeks. But if you could pick up 10 new customers with this conversation would it be worth it?
Of course it would be. And how would you do that?
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