Most businesses are aware of the potential social media sites to reach customers. But simply signing up to Twitter and Facebook is not enough. Discover how you can maximise your opportunities on social media in six easy steps
Your social media profile is a valuable online calling card that can impress your target audience or leave them cold. It pays to spend some time creating a compelling profile - it's also a valuable piece of marketing collateral that you can use time and again.
So if you haven't updated your profile since you first registered on sites like Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter, now's the time to make some improvements.
Social media demands lots of attention and that can be overwhelming. It's important to be seen to be active and above all to be responsive. So how do you keep on top of it?
There are lots of great social media apps that can help you to manage your online communication, even when you are out of the office:
The most successful people on social media are generous with their advice, sharing content and helping others to make useful connections. If you want to gain more followers, it's well worth producing regular content that you can share - it's also a great way to show yourself in a positive light without having to do a hard sell.
Are you maximising your opportunities for connecting on social media? It pays to be proactive when it comes to finding the right people to connect with.
There are many different types of people that may be interested in what you have to say - not just potential customers but those that could influence them. And every social media site has its own ways to help you find people. You can also use monitoring tools like Social Mention and Delicious to find your audiences.
Here are some of the groups you should try to reach out to, in addition to customers and potential customers:
Anyone tweeting or posting on your behalf has the potential to damage your brand, even inadvertently. Don't let your reputation suffer by drawing up a simple social media policy.
Make sure your employees understand the following:
Many customers prefer to get in touch with businesses via social media sites like Facebook rather than phone or email. That means you may well have customer queries and even complaints coming in via social media.
This is a chance to show your commitment to customer service. You can: