Something new that I just did was participate in a recording for Blog Talk Radio. Recently I was approached by a LinkedIn group member to be a guest presenter on her internet radio show. The idea was to share some information on using social media with entrepreneurs. Always game for a new foray into uncharted social media waters, I jumped on board.
This Forbes article Small Business + Small Marketing = Really Big Losses trended on LinkedIn recently and brings up very valid points about marketing.
Entrepreneurs know their business – mostly because they are technicians who have become business owners. In many cases, the person is/was good enough at their craft or trade that they decided to break out on their own to become businessmen, some by choice others by necessity. How many of them have an accountant or a payroll service? an IT support firm? a transportation company?
A true entrepreneur knows when it is time to get help in the areas that aren’t in their wheelhouse. In many cases one of the most important areas is marketing. You can have a great product or service but if you aren’t reaching new audiences or able to gain repeat business, you won’t make much money.
Know your audience, know how, where and when to reach them, and then produce enough incentive or reward to get them to answer your “call-to-action” to keep you in business.
Simple, right? Easy, not so much.
A book that might interest you in to help you solve your small business challenges is “The E Myth Revisited” by Michael Gerber.
What other resources have you found?
I recently read How can you get millennials to like your brand on Facebook? It sparked this thought: How do you get anyone to like your brand on Facebook? The article stated that Millennials say they are more likely to like an organization if it:
- Offers discounts (56 percent)
- Offers product samples (40 percent)
- Sends event invitations (28 percent)
- Sends personal invitations (27 percent)
- Has games or “fun” applications (14 percent)
I would venture to say that almost anyone would like an organization that offers discounts or product samples, and how many “Boomers” spend time on gaming options found on-line or in social media networks.
Conversly, I found this article Millennial Consumers: Engaged, Optimistic, Charitable that states:
- Millennials are actively engaged in consuming and influencing – more likely than non-Millennials to purchase products that support a cause, and the 34% that make direct donations primarily donate through mobile devices. They contribute to user-generated content, spend time rating products and services and uploading videos, images and blog entries online.
- Millennials favor recommendations from peers or friends – 53% reported exploring brands through social networks. They use their phones to read reviews or research products while shopping.
- Millennials are “digital natives” – 72% reported using MP3 players, 67% use gaming platforms and 59% own smartphones. They are heavily engaged with social media – 33% favor brands with Facebook pages and mobile websites.
My thought is that you must determine your target audience. That audience cannot be “anyone that …”. Drill down to find a specific market, own that demographic, and then, if you need, expand from there. Where will they find you if they look?
Once you pick a specific audience, find out where they “live”:
- smart phones
How will they find you?
- Do they pick up a newspaper or their Kindle?
- Do they find out about your business from Yelp or a phone call to a friend?
- Are they searching for you on Google or driving past your business?
Social media isn’t the only tool you should have in your marketing arsenal, but it is one that you should be using. If your business is going to succeed, you must investigate all aspects of marketing your business and social media must be included into the mix.
Recently, I read a great article on using social media to engage Kym McNicholas from Forbes. She does a great job of explaining the topics, so I would like to share it with you – click here.
If the thought of managing all of those tasks overwhelms you, perhaps you should consider hiring a community manager, if not full-time, at least part-time or on contract. Whatever you decide, make sure the person sharing the information understands your brand and your message to keep it consistent.
As I am embarking on this journey, I am learning many new things. One of which is how to use WordPress. After having used Blogspot for a couple of years, the operations are a bit different.
Additionally, coming from total HTML website design to trying to incorporate a website into WordPress, you look at things much differently.
Have you learned any more about Google+? What are your feelings on that application?
How about the changes recently with Facebook? Are they attempting to change too many things at one time? Are they welcome changes by the 750m users?