Tweet – once such an innocent little word – is seeding anxiety among even the most buttoned-up business women. As a professional, you may be wondering if you should be Twittering, tweeting, following, friend-ing, You-Tubing, Facebook-ing or just lying low and hoping the new media frenzy dies down. That’s not likely to happen.
While the avalanche of news about social media can be overwhelming, there is no mistaking its power to potentially reinvigorate a company and its brand. Professional and personal service firms, consumer products companies, entrepreneurs and non-profits have experienced its unmatched ability to build loyal customer relationships, generate brand buzz, mobilize constituencies, expand prospects and generate leads.
Admittedly, social media is also time-consuming, distracting and, when done haphazardly, potentially damaging. Entering the social media environment requires careful planning and monitoring to make the most of its business-building power.
At our software development company, we work with mid-sized and larger corporations to create, implement, and monitor the effectiveness of social media strategies. This enhances word-of-mouth marketing capability, and the ability to identify, interact, and engage key brand and company influencers. But the same basic ground rules apply for small businesses and start-ups:
Smart Social Media Tactics
1) Increase your social media IQ: Even if you can barely stifle a yawn, you need to put aside your opinions about social media and get educated. Social media is no longer just for teens and college students. In fact, statistics show the sharpest increases in older adults, with social networking growing 60 percent last year in people between the ages of 35 and 64, who are using it primarily to connect with business and personal contacts. Only 11 percent of Twitter users and nine percent of Facebook users are between the ages of 12 and 17.