Today, a large number of people in every demographic is using social media. People who like spreading the word about something are using it even more. You don’t need to compete with big brands to succeed. And if you do screw things up, social networks are very forgiving once you “get it.”
To help you get past your hesitation, or improve your social media skills, here are some tips to get some momentum going.
It’s Not About You
The biggest mistake that businesses make when they try to use social media is thinking that it is all about them. They confuse social media with traditional advertising. Remember, people only see traditional ads because they are there to see something else. You have to think of yourself more like a media outlet than a marketer. It’s about your audience, not yourself.
It’s Not One Way Communication
The difference between a traditional media outlet and social media is the ability of the customer to talk back. Since you can “hear” what they have to say, they expect you to react rather than just promote. Listening can be just as important as talking, not just because of the image it provides. It can also be a valuable source of feedback and new ideas.
It’s Not Fast
Social media takes time. You need to build a following before you can sell anything. Don’t expect instant gratification.
Don’t Spread Yourself Thin
You achieve the best results from social media if you dive all the way into a single community rather than mass publishing to a large number of communities. If you aren’t spending enough time on a social network to understand what appeals to the users, how to start a conversation in it, or how to build a following, you won’t achieve the success you are looking for. This is why you should spend some time deciding which networks are the best fit for you, so that you can focus your efforts where they will be most helpful.
It’s Not a Numbers Game
Instead of going after quantity, sift for quality. Instead of looking for a big audience, build connections with real people who have influence in your niche. Go out of your way to help these people and be genuine. It’s best to go into it without thinking about any particular reward you might receive. Just keep giving. They will give back. Earning the acceptance of experts in your niche is the best way to earn the reputation of an expert yourself.
Don’t assume that you should only help influential people, either. While this is where you should be putting about half of your effort, the other half should be put toward everyday people that are looking for help. This helps build your reputation as a reliable source, something that money can’t buy.
Be An Expert
To be an expert in your niche you simply need to be more willing to find information than most people are. You don’t need to know everything about your niche, you just need to know where to look or who to call. Spend some time talking to people in your niche and find out what they want to know. Give them the answers and they will be grateful.
No need to start from scratch. Look for people who have achieved success because of social media and study what they did right. Don’t copy them; originality is an extremely important part of social media success. Learn from them. Study the experts and look for patterns.
Success in social media is about connecting with your audience, finding out what they want, and giving it to them. The more you go out of your way, the more success you will find. Involve yourself in the online community and distance yourself from the idea of making money right off the bat. Instead, focus on building a solid reputation and build a business from there.
Guest article written by: Jeff has been blogging since 2007 & contributing on many websites since that time. He is a professional internet marketing and blogging consultant. Jeff is also a consultant and content contributor for Queens homes NY community.