Using social media to boost your business

Nowadays of course there is a way of making word of mouth spread much further; social media in the form of Facebook, MySpace, Twitter, LinkedIn and many more.

When planning a marketing strategy for your new home based work, probably the first thing that you think of is word of mouth and this is still one of the best ways to make your business grow. But nowadays of course there is a way of making word of mouth spread much further; social media in the form of Facebook, MySpace, Twitter, LinkedIn and many more. If your business is locally based, you might find that you will need to limit your ‘friends’ to people who are likely to become your customers, due to sheer geography. If on the other hand you produce a product that can be ordered online and sent anywhere there is a postal service, then the world is your oyster and can come to you via social media.

Home working for mums is a fabulous idea and it should be looked at as an opportunity to not only make some extra income but also meet new friends and widen your horizons. Because of this, some mums working for themselves find that they spend increasingly long hours at the computer on social media sites such as Twitter and Facebook, often getting sucked in to other things not to do with the business. It is fatally easy to get quite hooked on social sites and also to inadvertently give a totally wrong impression of yourself, often because of what other people post. It is vital to keep control of your Facebook, MySpace and other pages therefore, and keep to the programme. If you like to natter, have separate persona – for marketing, you need to be focussed.

More and more social media sites have professional spinoffs now – Facebook has launched one which is taking off well. If you join something like LinkedIn, be sure first that your skills or business plan fit the general flavour of the site or you might find yourself wasting a lot of time for no purpose. Don’t forget that the majority of people on these professional sites are like you – self employed or freelancing trying to get noticed. They are not likely to be customers as such. If you are good with words and like using a computer or smartphone, Twitter is quite good fun, as you have to keep the message short. Sadly, you might be tweeting to yourself if you have no followers but nothing ventured, nothing gained and as you won’t spend too much time per message, possibly worth a shot.

If you have a service to offer which can be demonstrated on social media sites, they are an ideal way to network. Artwork, music, short stories or other work involving creativity can all be shown to great advantage and might literally go round the world. You have to make sure that it is seen in the right way, so be very careful what you post. Some wise words recently on the use of social media said ‘Don’t post anything you are not prepared to stick up on your front door’ and this applies to marketing strategies equally well.

 





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