In business, marketing is life. You may have invented the world’s next great widget, provide your industry’s best service, or have a killer egde in the market – but if you don’t actively market you/your company/your widget, nobody else will know, and your business will flounder and stagnate.
You know this. And you may have a marketing strategy which leverages the traditional advertising options: Print ads in your local newspaper or perhaps an industry magazine, a radio spot schedule, a market-targeted TV ad campaign, a direct mail campaign, and maybe a few billboards.
If you have not added social media to your comprehensive marketing strategy, there is more to do.
Consider the following statistics:
- Location, Language, Education, and Work
- Age, Gender, Birthday, and Relationship Status
- Likes & Interests: Select Likes & Interests such as “camping”, “hiking”, or “backpacking” instead of “tents” or “campers”
- Friends of Connections
…all of which allows you to specifically target your ads – and thus market your service/business/product, to people who have a much higher likelihood of being interested in your product.
According to Huffington Post, Twitter has in excess of 200 million registered users, with new users signing up at a rate of 300,000 per day, with 180 million unique visitors every month, sending 640 tweets per second, and 600 million search engine queries per day. What this means for you with regard to marketing is:
- With Twitter’s 600 million search queries per day, your message has a very high probability of being found by people who are looking for what it is you are offering.
- Tweeting your marketing message over Twitter will likewise give you a significant SEO advantage.
As of March, 2011, professional networking site LinkedIn reached 100 million users. It has since gone public (IPO) and continues to grow. LinkedIn is a social networking site which promotes contacts among professionals and B2B marketing. Here are ten ways small businesses can leverage LinkedIn to market themselves:
- Acquire new customers through online recommendations and word of mouth.
- Keep in touch with people who care most about your business.
- Find the right vendors to outsource services you’re not expert on.
- Build your industry network – both online and in person.
- Get answers to tough business questions.
- Win new business by answering questions in your area of expertise.
- Raise funding.
- Network with industry peers for repeat business referrals.
- Convince potential customers of your expertise.
- Keep friends close and your competition closer.
Traditional media / advertising solutions, tend to be less target-specific than social media…where you can directly engage your target audience. As well, social marketing can offer a greater bang for your marketing buck (as a good amount of social marketing can be done with no monetary investment beyond the time it takes for you to engage in it).