Social media is a crucial component of all business models
Social media essentially converts online information into an interactive experience. In the simplest terms, this means allowing viewers to share content with friends and followers through websites like Facebook, Twitter and any number of other online communities.
For a short time, social media was to some businesses an eager upstart that could be safely ignored, but it didn't take long before the potential for easily sharing information was recognized. The importance of this form of communication to the world of marketing, especially for smaller businesses, is incredibly high, as social networking can be an easy way to get promotions out to a large group of people. Not every business has the revenue necessary to purchase thousands of promotional products, so they must understand the fundamental advantage that social media offers to those short on cash.
How much does social media cost?
Advertising, in the traditional sense, comes in the form of commercials or billboards, and can cost an incredible amount of money. Promotional advertising is also seen in the wealth of products that have a company brand or logo imprinted onto them. But not all advertising has to come from these areas. Forming a broader and easier-to-implement advertising strategy is very possible with social media, and the best part is, it's free.
Social media is a hotbed for marketing potential because it literally costs nothing to create a basic Facebook page, Twitter account or free blog. The customization of such websites is where a small business owner might spend a little more, but creating unique graphics and illustrations is money well spent. If a thousand people like your Facebook page, those thousand people have been reached without the use of expensive advertising. Think about it - a thirty-second ad during the superbowl reaches millions of people, but costs millions to air. A successful social media page has the same potential, except that it is low-cost, permanent and linked across the global spectrum.
Create easy-to-share Information Whether your strategy includes publishing news on your industry, video ads or even just information about your product, the key to utilizing social media is putting that information into easily shareable packages. A three-page document on big electronic chains would be informative, but it won't be shared by the majority of social networks because it is too long. Shorter articles, especially those in list form, are much more likely to be linked. A general rule of thumb is that a blog post or article should never be over a thousand words, with the preferential range between 200 and 600 words. Most people's attention is caught during that span. Also, by including commonly searched keywords, you increase the chance of being indexed by a major search engine. Officially termed SEO (search-engine-optimization) marketing, the hope is that random web surfers will type in a keyword and stumble onto your website.
Make it entertaining as well as informative
While your business model may typically lend itself to technical jargon, the common internet reader will not be a professional in the industry. People who want to read technical write-ups go looking for them independently, and for something to be shared with friends, the content has to be entertaining.
Consider loosening up the tone of the information. If it's an article, less formal and more conversational tones will be more appealing. Use second-person narratives instead of third person. Remember, the target audience for feeds like Facebook is everyone in the world - anyone from a history professor to a military engineer should be able to comprehend what they are reading. For video sites such as YouTube, the product should be incorporated into a highly entertaining narrative that will make it stand out from the millions of other videos. You can use various channels and outlets to spread the word about your business.
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