Social Media Consultant provides Social Media Optimization and unique Search Engine Optimization services to Small, Medium and Home-based Businesses: "Social networking sites like Facebook, Twitter, and Linked In offer service professionals the unprecedented opportunity to get in front of massive audiences in relatively short amounts of time. With such easy access to prospects and leads, it’s essential to have a firm understanding of why you’re there and how you’ll accomplish your goals. Before you send another Tweet or post a wall comment, take time to review your overall social media marketing goals.
Understand Why You’re There
Interestingly enough, many professionals haven’t clearly defined why they are getting on social networking sites. “Because everyone else is” isn’t a good enough reason. There’s nothing wrong with signing up on several sites and learning as you go along, but it’s more important than ever to understand your reasons for showing up.
Here are a few examples of why professionals use social networking. Scan the list and use any and all of them to guide your actions:
1. Build a credible name for yourself in your niche or industry
2. Showcase your expertise
3. Connect with prospective clients
4. Drive traffic to your website, blog, or articles
5. Build a following
6. Attract joint venture and strategic alliance partners
7. Get known by the media
8. Broaden your sphere of influence
How Will You Accomplish Your Social Networking Goals?
Social networking success is built upon relationships. Just as in offline, face-to-face networking, relationship building takes time. You wouldn’t go to an in person networking event and ask someone for their business before you’ve said “Hello”. Unfortunately that happens every day on social networking sites. Just because someone has added you as a friend doesn’t mean she wants your sales pitch!
When you design your social networking strategy, first ask yourself this important question: “How can I provide value to my network and followers?”
By focusing on adding value, you’ll filter out unnecessary actions, unwanted pitches, and off-topic tangents. You’ll lead with quality and people will look forward to the information you share.
As you add value and gain credibility, you’ll activate trust in your followers. Value, credibility, and trust are the main components that turn an observer to a follower, a follower to a fan, a fan to a lead, and a lead into a client.
One of the biggest mistakes professionals make in social networking is jumping too quickly to the sales part of the relationship before building a foundation of trust and credibility. By proving your worth with top notch information, you make it easy for others to perceive you in a favorable light.
Remember: people buy from those they know, like, and trust. Use social networking to add value, build credibility and develop trust with your ideal contacts. We’re just starting to scratch the surface of social media’s potential- start off strong with a solid foundation and enjoy success for years to come."