For starters, how can the different types of Social Media be used to grow my business online? Building a business is no longer about passing out flyers or offering a sale. Social media has taken a front-and-center role. It is now essential in building and growing a business. In the past, the Internet was used as a one-way vehicle for businesses to present information. The history of social media has evolved. Businesses used it to promote their products and services to prospective customers. That was Web 1.0 and the old saying “that was then and this is now” applies.
Next, the Internet has changed. The evolution of Web 1.0 to Web 2.0 has led to new opportunities. Consequently, businesses not only communicate valuable information to prospective clients, but to also receive crucial feedback from the Internet community. There are now many different types of social media and social bookmarking which can be leveraged to provide vast opportunities for online startups, if used correctly.
See, Web 2.0 is all about the Internet user and giving the Internet community a voice. It is a two way street of productive information. Additionally, it equates to website content marketing that can help to build a business customer base and increase website traffic. Consequently, one of the important components of social media is building “social authority”. Reputation management social media is a huge benefit for business owners. It can make or break your business. Social authority grows from the point when an individual or organization differentiates itself from others by establishing themselves as an “expert” in their particular field. Therefore, one must be pro-active and avoid these social media negative experiences.
Most important, this is the most popular social media term. It includes Internet sites such as Facebook, MySpace, and LinkedIn. These sites allow users the opportunity to connect with people who share similar interests. Additionally, a social network provides the opportunity to connect with even more users as your profile grows. Social Networking now accounts for almost 15% of all time spent on the Internet.
See, the sites include YouTube, Wikipedia, Craigslist, FlickR, and eBay – just to name a few. These sites allow users to generate their own blueprint content marketing and post that content onto these widely popular sites. Users not only create their own content and post it onto these sites but they can also manage that content. Users keep their content fresh which, allows for the visitor base to grow exponentially. Due to this, businesses have the opportunity to use content as a tool to attract visitors, which can later be converted into customers. This type of social media is critical to growing your business traffic.
These sites such as StumbleUpon, Digg, and others give users the opportunity to recommend Internet content to others, who then in-turn vote on the quality of that content. An example of an up-and-coming Social Recommendation site is TrustedOpinion, a site that reviews restaurants around the world. The key here is quality. If your company or organization provides a quality product or service to customers who are happy with that product or service, they will most likely recommend your company to others. These visitors will, in-turn, vote on their experience. This will build upon your company’s reputation. The benefit is that your company can build its brand and expand its customer base. The types of social media that can benefit business fast include social recommendations.
Sites like delicious.com, Digg, Newsvine, and Reddit Technorati, Google Bookmarks and to a certain degree Twitter and Facebook give users the opportunity to share their bookmarks with other Internet users. Consequently, users can organize, store, manage and search bookmarks. The difference between Social Bookmarking and Social Content is with bookmarking, the resources themselves are not shared but instead the bookmarks to which the sites are references are shared. This can be an invaluable tool to businesses looking to grow repeat visits from users.
Additionally, descriptions can be added to the “tags” of each bookmark so users can understand the content of the resource without first needing to download it. The advantage is that these types of social media links have human insight associated with them. In contrast, search engine spiders are more automated. Social Bookmarking can give your business website an “omnipresence” and attract more local customers. Consequently, this means it can help to sell your products faster and more efficiently. Plus, the best part about this is that Social Bookmarking is free. Due to this, business owners can generate more profit. Showing that you are on top of the news in your industry gives a recognized level of credibility.
- Most important, to save time and increase efficiency, you might automate social media for your business.
- Solid market research will help your business discover where its targeted customers are. For example, do they use specific forums or read certain blogs?
- Advertising on social media is a big opportunity for business owners.
- A business can create profiles on those sites and begin to build a network with prospects of various groups and communities. It is important to understand the rules of each community first.
- Finally, the goal is to add value to the conversations. Build and grow genuine relationships. Through these interactions, create circles of influence so that people start to trust your company and your company, in-turn, will build credibility.