Bridget Nelson Monroe is the co-founder of Mediamazing, a consulting agency that helps small businesses leverage the marketing power of social media and online video. Follow them on Twitter at @mediamazing, where they’re slowly working on taking their own advice.
5 Things Every Entrepreneur Should Know About Social Media
Congratulations! You’ve nabbed your business’ name on Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube. Now what? Here are five quick tips to establishing a high-quality presence online.
1. Quality before quantity. If you start following accounts on Twitter before you have any tweets, people will likely mistake you for a spammer. Aim for about 20 relevant tweets (tips, links to relevant articles, updates on your business) before you follow other people so they can see you’re a legit account. And don’t forget to fill out your profile!
2. Social media is a two-way street. It’s not a promotional tool; it’s a relationship-builder. Go ahead and update your Facebook page with info on your services, but be sure you’re also posting interesting articles from others in your industry, asking your followers questions, and responding to comments.
3. Be a personality. Get over your stage fright, and get in front of the camera. These days, consumers don’t expect Hollywood-quality clips. Webcams, Flip cams, and even smartphones — along with programs like Windows Movie Maker or iMovie — make it relatively easy to produce an informative series on your area of expertise.
4. Plan for the worst. If you’re on social media, be ready to accept the good, the bad, and the ugly. What if someone criticizes your business on Twitter or a snarky comment appears on your YouTube page? Think about how you will respond — because ignoring such comments won’t make them go away.
5. Consistency, consistency, consistency. Determine how often you’ll update, and stick with it. Don’t flood your followers with 20 updates one day, and then disappear for a month. And stay on topic and professional. If your audience looks to you for nutrition tips, they’ll be thrown off by an out-of-the-blue rant about a flight delay. Instead, use that opportunity to share your quest for a healthy airport snack.