Be SOCIAL on social media
Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, YouTube Flickr, FourSquare, Instagram (and others) are all social media platforms with a specific purpose, but they all share one common factor: they allow people to interact socially in different ways. For example Facebook lets you tell your friends what you're up to, FourSquare gives you the ability to tell them where you are. It's all about sharing information and passing on what you think is 'cool'. Primarily you can enjoy a closer relationship with your customers, boosting awareness and keeping them up-to-date on your latest products of services. For example, by 'tweeting' your latest special offer on Twitter, you can have it in front of your target audience within seconds - what other kind of advertising can offer that? And best of all, it's free! Even if you don't post regularly, people will still find you and 'Like' or 'Follow' you. After that, it's up to you how you take advantage of that relevant traffic.
Have you got a Facebook Page and Twitter Account created?
Once it's done, you can put a link on your home page and other pages to funnel people through to them. Post relevant content and/or offers that you think your customers (existing and prospective) will like to see. Offer a range of both informative content and offers - this way, you'll avoid alienating those who may see you only as a marketing machine, and give people something interesting to read, too! Social media is somewhat of an art form and you should have a strategy. It's easy for almost any business to implement a social media presence, but can get a bit tricky when it comes to mastering the tools available and making the most of it in the time available to you. Lots of companies think that once they have a social media presence, a Twitter profile and a Facebook page, LinkedIn business presence, the hard work is done - but that's actually where it starts.
Likes, fans, followers
Having lots of fans or followers is great, but if nothing is done with them, they remain an untapped resource. It isn't so much about the number of followers and likes any more, it's about the interaction you have with them. It's about them seeing you as a resource of information and someone to converse with, building up a trust and relationship as you go. Companies with the most successful social media campaigns are those that are able to engage their users in a way that drives and bolsters sales.
Social media is a tool like any other, and should be used to boost the success of the company that's using it.The key with social media is to create an offering which encourages users to visit your website, explore your products or services and (hopefully) place an order. To do this, you need to get users on your website in the first place - and the only way to do that is through the use of cleverly constructed posts.You need a strong call to action in most of what you post. So whether it's a new blog post or a simply observation, try to fit a link in somehow. It has to be relevant though - if you spam people with links you'll learn just how quickly they can 'unlike' you!
An important way you can make the most of your fans and followers is by asking them to help with some market research. This could be an idea for a new product, service, or anything else you might be considering. Your social networking audience will usually be more than happy to chime in with ideas. In the past this sort of research cost thousands; now it's within everyone's reach.
Remember the hard sell on the social media sites will likely destroy the relationship you have built and will lose you your followers and likes, so keep in mind you need to be SOCIAL on social media!