Monday, November 10, 2014

Social media clues

     Free daily tips, information, advice, and ideas,
     with examples from real small businesses.

     Many business owners think of social media as a one-way street. You put something up on the Internet, and buyers come calling.

     But social media is a two-way street. If you pay close attention, buyers will tell you what they want. And you need to be paying attention to this information.

     If your Facebook page is not attracting hits and likes, then you have not attracted their attention. The people out there are not interested. It doesn't mean that they have no interest. It can mean that they are not interested enough to linger on your page--much less like it and send it on to their friends.

     Social media reaches out to people of all persuasions. All these new technologies can expose you and your business to new markets. But you must be involved on your end as well.

     Example: Heather is a Reiki expert. She has a local clientele that is growing. When she went on Facebook and LinkedIn, a funny thing happened. She expanded in a way that she had not considered. Not only did she begin pulling clients from farther afield, but several people pointed her in a completely new direction--teaching Reiki long distance. She reworked her website and now offers courses on Reiki over the Internet. These clients can be anywhere.

     Example: Patrick runs a cafe offering breakfast and lunch only. He was somewhat reluctant to create a Facebook presence. When he did, he got some comments back that helped him expand. His current customers were mainly trades people--electricians, plumbers, and carpenters stopped in for breakfast or lunch. There was a sprinkling of professionals and office workers. Patrick noticed comments from office workers and professionals who wanted to eat "healthy" at breakfast and lunch. He began adding items to the menu and saw that just about everyone was ordering "healthy"--including those tradespeople. Patrick had caught a market wave by listening to social media feedback. The cafe is much fuller than before.

     Social media is a good way for small businesses to reach out. It's also a good way for your clients/customers to reach in. Feedback is a valuable tool for expanding. 

     When you listen, people will tell you much more on social media than they will in person. They will say what they like, don't like, want, and will buy. Sometimes, it takes reading between the lines, or filling in the blanks--but the feedback is there.

     Having your own social media presence is like having your own business consultant. If you listen carefully, your Facebook or LinkedIn or Google+ pages can help you grow and expand. More write-ups on social media are scattered throughout this blog. So far, I've written 170 entries. Check 'em out! 


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