With the help of social media, businesses of any size can spread the word about the products and services they offer and reach their customers directly. The thing about social media is that while anyone can begin utilizing it – after all Facebook, Twitter and Four Square accoutns are free – not everyone has a strategy how to use social media effectively. Mashable.com offers some advice:
Cultivate Super Users:
The key is targeting and cultivating super users — customers who are already fans of your brand, and share their positivity about it on the web.
“If I know there’s a Twitter user who loves purses and talks about them a lot (which I can find using Twitter Search), and I sell purses, I reach out to her and offer her 20% off to come in or check out my catalog online, just because I know she digs purses,” said Jason Falls, a social media strategist and consultant whose blog discusses the online marketing industry. “If she blogs about purses, maybe I send her a new model with a note that says, ‘Thanks for telling people about purses. We dig you.’ I’m betting she’d talk about me, and I didn’t have to break the bank to get the conversational love.”
When an endorsement comes from someone outside of your company, like a trusted blogger or social sharer, it has greater value and reach than anything you could send through official channels. You can’t control what the social web says about your brand directly, but by identifying and wooing brand ambassadors, you can certainly have an influence — the kind that no paid advertisement can match.
To find out more about how to use social media to market your small business, check out the rest of the article at Mashable.com.