More and more business owners are asking this question "Seriously, how can I use Social Media to help my business? Or "How can I make money from Social Media"?
Business Owners, they're a hypocritical group aren't they? They want you to buy from them yet want everything for FREE! Truth is, I don't blame them for that. Why pay for something if you can get it free (legally of course). http://www.facebook.com/ ? Free. http://www.twitter.com/ ? Free. OK. So far so good. There are millions of people on facebook and millions of people on Twitter. I can leverage this to make money and it's free...smiley faces all around : )
The small to medium sized business owner can't believe their fortune. It's like the sky parted and is shining this big ol' Social Media light on their business. T.V. Commercials? Fahgetaboutit. Radio Ads? Are you kidding? With the i pod, i trip, mp3 thinga-ma-jiggy, how many people even listen to the radio anymore. Newspaper? Are newspapers still around? No sirree Bob, most small to medium sized business owners know where they will market in 2011...the Internet.
Some have even pinpointed it to Social Media Sites. Many have tried or are trying. They have realized (or will soon realize) that Facebook actually has rules! For instance, did you know that you can't just blindly Friend Request everyone? Also, you can't just blast your website to millions of potential consumers. Try it and Facebook will warn you. Disregard that warning and Facebook will shut you down. Ask around, you might know someone who has experienced being shut down by Facebook! Oh ya, it happens all the time. Some have also tried Twitter. It's been 4 months and they have 11 followers and over half of them are there immediate family. Besides, their busy actually running their business. They don't have time to tweet throughout the day every single day. Even if they did, they don't know what to tweet. Wow, this haystack just got bigger.
Then the questions comes, that same one that is popping out in Tampa, Boston, Dallas, Los Angeles and everywhere in between. "Seriously, How can I use Social Media to help me grow my business?" Or the more direct question, "How can I leverage Social Media to make money?"
If you're a business owner and if you have that question I applaud you. You are further ahead than 80% of other business owners. Of course, there are still those so called "business owners" who aren't on Facebook, just don't get Twitter and never heard of Foursquare or didn't even know there were more than 2 social media sites. Then there are those that don't believe in Marketing their business...I won't even address those...they probably can't read anyway. This blog is for the literate anyway.
OK, so where are we? Oh ya...you saw a needle being dropped in a haystack. You need that needle and you know it's there but it's such a huge haystack! Eventually you think you'll find it. You're tenacious. You're single-minded of purpose. You're not a quitter. Eventually you think you'll find that needle. Good for you and Good Luck.
Now what if I told you...it's a race. There are other needles dropped in other haystacks and other business owners are looking for them. The ones that find it first will have a big advantage in the next few years. Experts predict that those that never find it won't be in business in 5 years! Mr/Mrs Tenacious, Single Minded of Purpose, Non Quitter watcha gonna do now? How important is that needle now?
What if you knew someone who had a metal/needle detector?
For those that can't see in front of their own faces let me clarify this for you.
Haystack = Social Media Sites (Millions upon millions of consumers that if they "like" you (your product, your restaurant, your shoes, your dentistry, etc.) they will be a dynamic reference for you as they tell their friends and they tell their friends etc.
Needle = How to actually leverage Social Media or Networking sites in order to increase your business.
They guy with the metal/needle detector = Socially Aware Marketing! My company. What? Did you expect me to promote someone else in MY blog? lol
So there you are, wondering how to use Social Media and here I am knowing how to use Social Media. What in the world should we do now? I'm tapping my fingers until the light bulb turns on over your head....tap, tap tap.