Thursday, April 23, 2015

Social media tips


Thanks to the power of smartphones, people have begun to use social media and the internet to research products they want to buy, services they may need or the entertainment they choose to enjoy.

“Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn are all social media platforms, designed for communicating with others,” says Elaine Stenbraaten, new venture specialist, Alberta Agriculture and Rural Development, Fairview. “Some of these platforms are good for networking with your friends, colleagues and customers and others are great for communicating in business. Facebook is one of the most commonly used social media platforms. It’s an excellent tool for networking and communicating with your customers and can be a great way to communicate your brand.”

Given this, says Stenbraaten, having an effective online presence is more important than ever.

“A good website is an absolute must this day in age, both from the perspective of being searchable in the world wide web and for connecting to your clients. As Megan Madden, president of Southpaw Communications, is fond of saying, ‘If your website is not up to date, people assume you are out of business.’ While your website doesn’t have to be flashy or change constantly, it is about engagement and should direct people back to the method of engagement that you want to use, whether that is social media, in person or even the plain old telephone.”

If you’re new to using online marketing and social media take small steps, explains Stenbraaten. “Start simple and set up a Facebook page for your business. Facebook can be a great place to connect with your customers and let them know about your business. While not typically a ‘selling’ website, its purpose it to ultimately keep you top of mind with your customer and let them know more about you and your business. And ensure your Facebook icon (and if you use other social media) are on everything you print from business cards, to magnets, thank you cards, etc.”

The biggest thing to remember about social media and internet marketing is just to start, says Stenbraaten. “By ensuring that your business is branded and that you know who your client is, you can target your online campaign for maximum efficiency. Not only will you see your customer engagement grow but your return on investment will be well rewarded in the long run.”

To find more information, go to the Explore Local website to watch recorded webinars on social media.

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