intimidating

Social Media Can Be Intimidating: It Doesn’t Have to Be

Here are 2 tips to make it easier!

Too many people are afraid of social media. If you don’t understand it, social media can be intimidating, but it doesn’t have to be.

The biggest complaints I get from people are they don’t have time and don’t know what to post. The uncertainty of it can leave you paralyzed. But, what if you had a source for ideas and content, and could do it all in the evening, away from the office if you were a small business or one person show, not having it interrupt your day? It could happen!

Now, before I share these two tips, here is the caveat: if you have requests and/or responses that may be time sensitive, replying late in the evening could cost you business. You will have to figure out how to check your messages during the day and replying if necessary, leaving the rest for the evening. Regardless, these two tips will save you time, let you organize and plan, and help you make money.

1) Finding Content and Ideas

I group finding content into two categories: content about your message and content that’s fun and/or informative. You see, the three reasons someone uses social media are to be entertained, informed and helped. Businesses may do it for a few other reasons (to get leads for sales, provide customer service, and be informed and helped), there is mutual overlap. So I use two main applications for these: StumbleUpon and Google Alerts.

StumbleUpon

Do you know how many prospects you're losing once they get to your website?StumbleUpon is a random directory that is organized by interests. When someone “stumbles” it looks at your interests and returns websites that match those criteria. If you like what you see, click on the “LIKE” button; if not, the “DISLIKE” button. In this manner, StumbleUpon learns your interests and provides only that content.

This is a great way of looking for informative and entertaining content to share. After all, if you only share stuff pertaining to your business or message, people would not only find you boring, but self serving; hence they won’t follow you.

Google Alerts

Google Alerts lets you setup “alerts” and delivers them in the frequency you tell it. For example, two good alerts to create are your company and you, and have it delivered daily. This way you learn about any good press, but also about any complaints and allow you to put out fires before they get out of control.

You can also setup alerts pertaining to your message. So if you provide tax services, you may want to setup alerts for the IRS, tax, taxes, Senate or House bills, etc. Whenever anything is posted about these alerts, you will receive an e-mail with all the stories it found. Now you are not only aware, but it provides references for blog posts and articles.

2) Managing Your Program

I found a NEW platform called Buffer that allows you to schedule your Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn posts, all in one convenient location. It lets you try it for FREE (10 posts per account: Twitter, LinkedIn and Facebook) so you can get the feel for it and see if you love it. If you do, for $10 a month or $8.50 a month if you pay for the year, you can manage up to 12 accounts and include 2 additional team members. Why is this great?

Unless you have a full-time social media professional managing your campaign (larger companies need to consider this), often all you can do is set an hour or two a day aside. This allows you to take that time and plan your social media day, scheduling your tweets and posts, ensuring a smooth delivery of your content and message. You’ll get a higher return on responses with a well-managed campaigned, not just posting something whenever you remember to, which will return higher responses. After all, why are we doing this if not to start a conversation?

The ultimate goal of any social media campaign, with few exceptions, is to drive traffic to your website, so you can capture that identity and have a database you own for future ongoing marketing. The reputable companies keep this database private and do not sell or share it (word to the wise, nothing will make people flee you faster). So a well thought out social media campaign, complemented by your key tool and hub, your website, is the keys to a successful business and sales. So manage it well and make sure your store front is ready.

See you on the retweet!

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Eddie Velez

CEO and Founder at Success by Design
Eddie Velez is a marketing professional, designer and author. He has contributed to many portals like "Media Connections," "The 5 Minute Business Mind" and others. He has also contributed the chapter on the Internet and Websites for "Secrets of Successful Inventing: Sixteen Experts Spill the Beans." Eddie writes on many topics and has been a ghost writer and editor for authors and consultants. If you want Eddie Velez to contribute to your business content, portal or blog, contact him to discuss your particular needs.
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