Social Media

Using Professional Social Networking Sites

By | 07.10.10

Using Professional Social Networking Sites

Today, if you’re in business, you need to learn about social networking. It’s one of the fastest growing developments in online marketing, and advertisers are reaping the benefits of the social networking sites. Log-in to any of the biggest social networking sites and you’ll find a huge number of businesses hawking their brands, from trendy fast food outlets to automakers, retail shops and other big businesses. They’re reaching out to social network users to bring in more business and gain friends and fans. Since most social networking sites are free, you should jump on the bandwagon. Here’s how:

Uncover Your Demographics and Develop a Marketing Plan

Before you start your marketing campaign, you need to understand the demographics of your business. Younger buyers are attracted to certain social networking sites, while other, older users are attracted to others. You need to identify what social networks sites will attract the people that are attracted to your business or service, and to do that, you need to understand the characteristics of the people who shop with you. Develop a survey to find out more customers, and then use it to develop your marketing strategy for the social networking sites.

Effective Online Marketing

One of the biggest mistakes you can make if you’re marketing online is to create a presence and then ignore it. Social networkers check their favorite sites several times a day, and they want to see changes. You need to update your products and services as often as possible (most say daily), and keep people informed about what’s going on in your business. If there are comments or concerns, you need to address them immediately. Interact with your friends and fans, but see out potential clients and companies online to promote yourself and your business. Gain their trust (don’t bombard them with sales info, just interact with them), and you’ll eventually gain their business, too.

Is Online Superior Than Face-to-Face Marketing?

You might not think social networking sites can ever replace the benefits of face-to-face marketing. However, with the results looking so promising, that may not be the case any longer. If you’ve done your homework and picked the right social networking sites, you can open up a meaningful dialogue with your customers that can lead to better communication and knowledge for both you and your customers. You can learn from one-on-one conversations with your clients, and you can find out what they like and don’t like about your business. You really need to interact with customers, rather than trying to sell them something every time you post to your site. If you interact with them, they’ll trust and respect you, and that can lead to long-term relationships that can lead to increased sales along with a better idea of you and your business.

Even if you serve an older demographic, social networking is taking over millions of people’s lives worldwide. Market your business on social networking sites is a way to reach a much larger market without a great deal of expense or effort.

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