I am just amazed at the kind of connections we have formed through social media alone. In this day of age, much of the interactions we have on a daily basis are online connections. It’s a fantastic way to reach out to people that based on geography alone, we normally might not connect with. If small businesses want to make a go of it, then they have to get a little tech savvy and learn how to make social media really work for them. Here are a few of our tips on how to use social media to your advantage and not just for checking your friend’s Facebook updates.
Know your company and what you have to offer. Be secure in that and then engage interesting people online. Join conversations and offer opinions when they are asked for. Follow people that you admire and respect on twitter and retweet interesting comments. If you are genuine in your admiration it will show. For us, it was easy to do this as we were just starting out. There was a great deal we didn’t know. But what we lacked in expertise, we made up for in determination. We reached out to other businesses and people that were doing what we wanted to do and asked a lot of questions. Our curiosity might not have been welcomed had we not made those connections online first.
Be all about give and take. People are much more likely to “give” if you have ‘given” first. It’s the yin and yang of any relationship. Not that we are advocating doing something just to acquire something in return, as most people can smell that from a mile away. There’s a reason why people that give of themselves are some of the happiest people on the planet. It just feels good. Besides even if it’s about you in the end, you might not want everyone to know that, as you could come off as a little arrogant. In our experience, giving more has only enabled us to “get more.” Really! (This applies online or in person)
Keep making online connections. Follow people and comment. Regularly post on your own accounts. Engage your customers/followers every day. People that “unfollow “ you because “you post too much,” weren’t going to buy from you anyways. Social media can definitely work for your business, but you have to put time into it. Nothing happens overnight.
Help Others. Along your entrepreneurship journey if another small business for your input or business wisdom, give it! Remember what it feels like when you were just starting out and how just a little guidance went a long way. I find that even now, we still seek a little advice from others. It’s nice to have a mentor that you can always reach out to if you should need it. Sometimes a little extra confidence can really help.
Above all else, have fun! It can really easy and enjoyable to make social media work for you and your business. It just takes a little patience.