T Nation

Social Media for Businesses

Hi team,

Does anyone have any good recommendations about where to learn about using social media to promote their business? Its something I need to get on top of for my business and I’m not sure with all the resources out there exactly where to start so I’m hoping someone on here might be able to point me in the right direction.

Thanks guys and girls.

Stuart

http://www.linkedin.com/home?trk=eml-ntf-marketing&ut=1sM0HXv6FT7Bs1

Place to start or you may already know this

Crush It by Gary Vaynerchuk is a good place to start. Be warned that most people have no idea how to work social media and over-complicate it to the extreme. VERY few businesses are able to do it successfully, particularly because it is much more suited (no pun intended) for a small business like your own and very hard for larger companies to take advantage of.

The fact is most people don’t discuss commercial matters on social networks. Whenever someone posts something promoting their own product and brand it instantly turns the reader off. Instead, people like to share funny or useful content rather than specifically talk about a brand or product.

Let’s say you wanted to work LinkedIn. LinkedIn is a site for professional connections. Your business sells discount custom suits and fashion recommendations (I believe?). I think it is a safe assumption that people who are potentially interested in a suit coupled with fashion advice are likely going on an interview or hoping to go on one and want to dress to impress.

In order to target this audience on LinkedIn or Facebook, you might create an article entitled “12 Things You Must Know For Your Big Interview” or “The 7 Key Rules of the Perfect Interview” and go on to discuss 12 tips or 7 rules - it doesn’t matter as long as it’s good. Naturally, part of a good interview is dressing the part, so one of your 7 tips should be like “buy a nice suit” and recommend your own company as an option.

To increase engagement, you could put in the article that you are happy to answer questions through Facebook on your fan page. Make it an enticing offer - let people send you their picture dressed up in their interview attire and offer free advice and post it publicly. Now you are interacting with potential clients and customers, and when they decide to buy a new suit, odds are they are going to go with the guy they “know”, even if you just met online.

At the end of the day outside of what networks to sign up for there’s not a lot that anyone can tell you since it’s all so specific to your business. What I can tell you is that people like good content, whether it be in text, audio, or video… people winning on social networks are producing useful free information that people like to talk about. They aren’t just creating a facebook fan page and posting useless crap over and over again that no one cares about (99% of companies).

http://rosssimmonds.com/

The website of a fellow I graduated university (Saint Mary’s University in Halifax) with. He specializes in social media and marketing for upstarts and small businesses. I’ve found his blog posts incredibly intriguing, insightful and helpful.

[quote]challer1 wrote:
Crush It by Gary Vaynerchuk is a good place to start.

At the end of the day outside of what networks to sign up for there’s not a lot that anyone can tell you since it’s all so specific to your business. What I can tell you is that people like good content, whether it be in text, audio, or video… people winning on social networks are producing useful free information that people like to talk about. They aren’t just creating a facebook fan page and posting useless crap over and over again that no one cares about (99% of companies).[/quote]

This was an awesome post and really sums up the use of social media to promote a small business. I see that you have a Facebook business page, and that you’re running a “Free Suit” contest on your website. I would say you might benefit from more overlap between the website and the Facebook page - for example, you could offer Facebook visitors your Free Guide in exchange for their “like” of your Facebook page.

There is also some very simple programming for Facebook that allows you to “blur” information pages or paragraphs, then “unblur” them when visitors “like” your page.

The free suit is a powerful offer - you should highlight that on Facebook. Good luck to you!

What Challer1 wrote! Its pretty much what T-Nation do - write pretty informative bulk/cut/strength programs, and then add a T-Nation supplement into the article.

Thanks for the advice guys, it’s appreciated.

Social media is going to be the make it or break it of our,and most, business over the next 5-10 years so it’s something I need to get on and get good at asap.

Stuart

[quote]Sturat wrote:

Social media is going to be the make it or break it of our,and most, business over the next 5-10 years so it’s something I need to get on and get good at asap.

[/quote]

I don’t buy that at all. If you have a consumer based business, sure, social media can be helpful. I work in industry, I honestly don’t care if my steel supplier has a facebook page and I have no idea how that would help them. Just about everything I do deal with I don’t see how it would benefit from social media. Actually, the company I used to buy purging compound from tries the social media thing and it’s more annoying than anything. It’s just another way for them to pester the shit out of me to get me to buy their shitty and overpriced products that I don’t want.