The New Year is all about roundups, 10 best lists, and predicting trends. I’ve been reading a lot of these articles lately, but one in particular stood out to me. Part of it was timing, just having lead my second Social Media for Artists workshop, but also because I often forget, being so immersed in social media, that still not everyone is using it. And by everyone I mean businesses.
The article... 30 Social Media Predictions From 30 Social Media Pros. A lot of interesting takes on what the year ahead has in store. But what stood out to me most was the general notion that social media will finally come into it’s own. Predictions #3 - Social media will become mainstream and #6 - Social media will no longer be something the “cool kids” are doing, said it best. What I find surprising is that not everyone is using this tool to its utmost value already.
I teach about its accessibility, about its over all value, and about its power to build loyalty and trust with customers. All of this for free and just a little investment of time. So I ask again, why isn’t everyone using it?
These predictions gave an idea of what the answer might be. The majority of businesses still aren’t sure what they should be doing and if it’s worth it. So I want to try to convince you it is worth it and also convince you that the sooner you jump in the more established you’ll be when the rest catch on. It’s still possible to use social media as a leg up over your competitors.
So back to the convincing part, I promise not to go overboard, but here’s just a few things that might sway you.
1) Your target market is somewhere online, you just need to find them.
2) Engaging in the right conversations is much more effective than traditional marketing. If you become a part of the conversation your target market is having, you build a relationship, you become a friend.
3) Some of your competition is using social media, but there’s a good chance they’re not doing it well.
4) Social media is the way your customers are communicating. You need to be using the tools that they are and be present in the conversations they have.
5) Using social media with a plan can save you both time and money. Facebook, Twitter, and Flickr are free and have millions of users you can tap into.
6) Social media allows you to gain insight into your industry, your competition, and your customers. This allows you to respond quickly to needs and problems.
7) Social media broadens your reach with less effort. I repeat millions of users, not to mention the ability to find target markets you may not have thought of.
8) Social media allows you to create relationships, which lead to loyal customers. Wouldn’t you rather buy from or recommend someone you’ve had a conversation with, even if it was only online?
So I urge you, get into the conversation, make it a part of your marketing strategy and use it to the best of its ability. If you need a little help getting started we have a great workbook you can go through at your own pace.
I’d love to hear what successes you’ve already had with social media.
I encourage comments directly to this post, but also feel free to email me directly with questions, reactions, struggles, etc. firstname.lastname@example.org
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