Everyday, I hear clients complain that social media is not doing much for them. They created a facebook page, got a twitter account and expected customers to start flowing in. They thought the accounts would start showing results right away and on their own.
I’m not sure where the misconception originates, but let me set the record straight. Social Media is work. It is in fact HARD work. But in the end, it does pay off in more ways then one.
1. It builds your credibility
If used correctly, your social media accounts should inform people about your business. It shouldn’t be used uniquely to pitch your product or service. Don’t get me wrong, there is no problem announcing your sales, but that shouldn’t be your main focus. GIVE to people. Share your knowledge. This way, they will spread the word for you. If they read a good tip on how to quickly fix a whole in the wall, they will be more inclined to share your post than if you post about a 10% discount on all plaster in your store. The more people share your stuff, the more credible you become. By offering good content, you will become a well known source on your topic.
2. It builds trust
As people get to see your name regularly, as they see you actively engaged, they will begin to recognize you and trust you, especially if the information you give out is accurate and reliable. Stick to what you know. It takes a long time to build up trust and very little to lose it.
3. It’s a free way to get your word around
Who doesn’t like free? Yes, it costs you time, and time is money, but there are many ways to manage your time on social media. Use the pomodoro method so you don’t get carried away. Sit down on a Sunday night and schedule your posts for the week by using a tool such as hootsuite. Track every minute you spend on your computer with RescueTime
4. It’s interactive
It’s fast, instantaneous, immediate. You post something and right away receive feedback. As such, you have to avoid being counterproductive. If you are scheduling your posts, you need to make sure you are available and responding quickly when you get a message or an interaction. Otherwise, you are wasting your time. The lifetime of a post is about 1 minute, especially on twitter. So make the best of that lifetime. Also, don’t be shy to like, share, retweet, comment on anything you see fit.
5. It eventually results in sales.
But you have to be patient. You never know when you will start seeing the fruit of your labour, but it is somewhat like a snowball effect. At first, very little will happen, but be persistent. In the last 2 weeks, I have signed up 3 clients as direct result of my social media efforts. One person saw a tip I had given a friend of mine on her wall about web design some 8 months ago. He saw the post and contacted me to see if I could help with his website. So although a post normally has a lifespan of 1 minute when it comes to responding to it, it is stored forever and can attract potential customers long after its original birth.
Have fun Socializing!