Social Media: Get on the Bandwagon!

Do you have a Facebook account? How about Twitter, or Digg, or Flickr? How many followers or fans do you have? How often do you tweet, retweet? No idea what we’re talking about? Don’t worry… You may be coming late to the party, but it’s not too late to join the Social Media Revolution. Here are some tips you can use to get up to speed – and climb on board the Social Media Bandwagon!

Tip #1: Know the space

Here’s a list of the major players in the place. You’ve probably heard of — or use — one or several of these sites. But are you aware of just how many people are involved in the world’s most popular social media sites?

Facebookthe world’s most popular social networking website that launched in 2004. As of January 2011, Facebook has more than 600 million active users worldwide.

MySpace: is a social networking website that held the “most popular” title before Facebook, between June 2006 – April 2008. They currently have around 33 million monthly users in the US.

Twitter: a website that offers a social networking and microblogging service, enabling its users to send and read messages called tweets. Twitter has around 190 million users, generating 65 million tweets a day.

LinkedIn:  is a business-oriented social networking site launched in 2003. Linkedin has around 21.4 million monthly unique U.S. visitors and 47.6 million globally.

FourSquare: a location-based social networking website that has over 5 million registered users.

Flickr: an image and video hosting website, web services suite, and online community. Flickr currently hosts  over 5 billion images.

Digg: a social news website with 8.5 million monthly U.S. unique visits.

YouTube: the world’s most popular video-sharing website…with over 2 billion videos uploaded since 2005! a social bookmarking web service for storing, sharing, and discovering web bookmarks. They have more than 5.3 million users and 180 million unique URLs bookmarked.

Reddit: a social news website with over 400 million monthly page views.

Tumblr: is a microblogging platform that claims over 50 million monthly unique users

Tip #2: Get Your Company on the Bandwagon!

So your company wants to create or improve it’s social media presence. Fantastic! With millions of people using each one of these sites, it may seem like your message won’t stand out in the crowd.  However, taking the time to manage and start dialogues with social media contacts can generate lots of red-hot leads… as long as you don’t make some of the biggest mistakes businesses can make.

The chart on the right illustrates some factors that can prevent you from achieving success in the social media space. Don’t be daunted. In fact, if you add together the top-two reasons – “Not allocating proper time/resources,” and “Not having a strategy” – that makes up the 67% of the total! So think of it this way: if you have merely a sound strategy and assign it to the right person, you’re already two-thirds there.

Tip #3: The Right Steps to Follow

•Decide who is managing it – PR, Marketing or a Social Media Department?
•Hire a full-time marketing or social media person to manage program
•Familiarize your company with main players in space
•Set up accounts with relevant social media networks
•Update frequently and expand reach
•Monitor social media space for negative posts / chatter
•Respond quickly when necessary
•Ensure Social Media outreach is in lockstep with Marketing and PR Departments
•Integrate Blog with Social Media outreach

Tip #4: Amplify your message

The objective of taking the time to create a solid base of followers or fans is to successfully amplify your message in the quickest way possible. Think about this scenario:

Let’s say for example that your business has 1,200 Facebook fans, 2,000 followers on Twitter, and 500 subscribers to your blog.  By simply sending out a tweet, writing a wall post, and updating the blog, you’ve alerted 3,700 people instantly and – best of all – for free. There’s no other way to send out messaging this fast, this cheap, without needing to know any information about your prospects.

In addition to quantity, another key to the success of social media outreach is quality: take the time to create a quality following that will actually respond to you. Moreover, make sure to communicate interesting, helpful and informative content.

Have a question about how to make social media work for your business? Let us know in the comments!


Rio Longacre, VP Sales & Marketing

(click on my name to follow me on Twitter!)

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