Many small businesses are struggling. They are looking for more clients, more customers, more patients, more investors – and more brand recognition.
Whether you are a a dog walker, a boutique owner or a dentist, successful branding increasingly depends on the size and quality of your online network of connections.
Social media can be an isolating experience, if you do not know where to start. Online channels such as Twitter and Facebook offer a potentially powerful set of tools to find and attract new customers, but it may take time to understand it all.
The key is patience, especially for beginners. Take a deep breath and realize it all will make sense over time – and yield big rewards.
You may even find that traditional advertising takes a backseat to your online efforts because of affordability and effectiveness.
Small businesses are creating highly targeted and localized lists of followers, friends and fans, whom they can interact with and send regular updates.
Customers especially like this new media because they have a more efficient and direct way to find out about special offers, events and news that may affect them.
- Most social media enthusiasts will tell you that you should start off with a blog, website or a wordpress site.
- If you are in need of a website or a website update you can skip that in the beginning and get started building fans. Start with a Facebook page and start adding all the information that your customers will need right away.
- The potential of social media to help your business is huge. Don’t bite off more than you can chew. Start by finding out what sites you feel comfortable having a personal profile on first.
- Look at your competition's Facebook pages and see what is working for them. Get inspired and then get involved. The only mistake you can make is waiting too long to get started.
- It doesn’t matter what kind of business you have, people look up everything on Facebook now. They are looking for your address, your reviews, your updates, your news and any special offers that your business may be having right now. If you are not on Facebook, it is hurting your business.
- I believe that having a Twitter account is necessary for any small local business, but only if you have figured out how to use Facebook and you are comfortable with the way it functions. If you do not think you have the time to go on Twitter every day then don’t worry about that until you decide that your business cannot survive without it.
In time, you will be trying new things and gaining confidence. As you make a connection online, you will feel it in your business. These connections will be superior in quality and quantity than any other effort can bring.