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social media tips for small businesses

Social Media Marketing Advice For B2Bs

A few years ago the sentiment was that if you didn’t have a website than you weren’t in business. Having a website designed gave current and potential customers a way to get to know the business they were getting ready to do business with, check out services and find a way to get in contact with you.

Today, it is a given that you will have a website BUT you also need a social presence. Don’t think that just because you are a business to business service/product provider and not B2C that you don’t need to take advantage of social media. You need to use social media to prove to potential customers that you are an industry leader… that you know what you are talking about.
Here we are going to give a few reasons as to why B2Bs need to utilize social media, but first we want to make a point. If you do nothing else, make sure that your company blog is talking about industry related information. A nice combination of original and curated content is best, but talk about what is happening now, trends, issues and how your company would handle them.
The reason is twofold, your rankings will sky-rocket. Remember when a company sits to do a search for someone to address a need they have, they aren’t going to scroll through pages of results. They are going to take a look at the first few results on that first page, and you may be surprised to find out that they are going to pay more attention to the website results that are ranked organically. The latest stats report that businesses that maintain an active blog receive 67% more leads through their website and 57% of companies that use their blog have acquired customers from blog generated leads.

Don’t make the mistake in thinking that only your marketing person needs to promote your company, get all of your employees involved. Encourage them to refer people to the blog content in conversation, email and social networks.

A Few More Reasons to Use Social Media

1. A customer needs to see a company’s name 7 times (on average) before they trust that company enough to do business with them.
2. 89% of consumers view online sources of products and services reviews as trustworthy
3. 63% of consumers are more inclined to buy from a site that has product ratings and reviews
4. 75% of B2B buyers say that social media will influence future purchases
5. A company using its blog to create interesting content and promote internal content can increase their monthly leads by 8 times.
6. 91% of Fortune 500 companies use social media as part of their marketing mix
7. 82% of your potential clients online can be reached socially through social networks
8. 72% of marketers have reported that they are closing more business deals because of social media

Keep In Mind

The point of social media is to engage your potential customer. You engage the with interesting relevant content. Calls to action that lead them to more great content are important. Social media, especially social networks is NOT about selling. If you do nothing but talk about how great your company and your product is you are going to lose potential customers and possibly current ones.

If used right, social media can be a great, very low cost and effective marketing tool for your small business.

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5 Quick Tips For Small Businesses

Small businesses should definitely use social media- it’s what we call the best set of free marketing tools out there!  Here’s 5 Quick Tips every small business owner should know about using social media…

1. No one has time to sit on Twitter and Facebook all day.  Especially when you’re busy running your business.  We recommend using a tool like Hootsuite to help you manage the time you spend managing your social media networks.  With Hootsuite you can post to Facebook, Twitter, and many other social media networks- and schedule those posts ahead of time so you don’t have to sit there all day!

2. Engagement is the key to social media.  Showing new fans and followers that you’re interested in what they do, will get them interested in what you do.  Take time to mention them, thank new followers, ask questions, and compliment them. You’d be surprised how many will return the favor.

3.  Periodically search new people out on Twitter who are in your area- physically and mentally.   Follow those new people- chances are, they’ll follow you back.

4.  Set up an auto Direct Message for new followers.  Using a free service like SocialOomph.com, you can set up a new message to automatically be sent to new followers on Twitter.  You can invite them to visit your Facebook page, your website, or just say thanks for  following.

5. Don’t forget #FollowFriday!  Every Friday on Twitter is #FF or Follow Friday.  This is a day where you “mention” your favorite twitter followers.  Those that you mention, are likely to return the favor- and this is a great way to build new followers.

Stay tuned for more tips coming on the use of Social Media Marketing for small businesses.

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