Monday, April 2, 2018
Once upon a time, the Yellow Pages were the best place to find out about new businesses and the internet was for AOL and killing time in chatrooms. (Who doesn’t miss hearing “You’ve got mail”?) But we’re living in a post-Y2K world now, and people carry entire search engines in their pockets. If your business isn’t on social media, you’re missing out on business opportunities, plain and simple.
The good news is that it’s easier than ever to network online thanks to social media. Whether you’ve already made the jump or are just now testing it out, here are a few best practice tips for building business online:
What do you want to get from social media engagement? “More business” is a fine goal in general, but also a bit vague, which can ultimately make it hard to achieve. Is there a particular area of your business you want to grow, like working with more lawyers or city groups? When you can specifically define what you want, it’ll be easier to figure out how to get it.
Once you’ve figured out what kind of audience you’re looking for, you can decide which social networks you need to be on. Some people get overwhelmed with their social media strategy because they think they need to be on every network, but you only need to go where your audience is. Facebook is usually a safe choice due to its popularity, but also consider LinkedIn since it’s popular for professional networking. Reach out to some of your current contacts to see if they and their colleagues have a preferred social network or groups that you could join.
The Pew Research Center also has studies on social media demographics to help you determine where to focus your efforts.
“Being active” on social media means posting, and the last thing you want is for potential business prospects to lump your posts in the same category as their retired Uncle Bob. Consider having a personal account to keep up with friends and family, and a business account or page for your professional networking.
You should plan to post to your professional page on a regular basis, ideally at least twice a week or more if you can manage it. The things you post should help you build connections with your audience, instead of being hyper-focused on selling your services (as we’ve said before, no one likes to be sold to). It’s fine to have some fun or silly posts every now and then to show your personality and authenticity, but remember that this page is for work. You want to be seen as a professional, especially to new potential contacts. Here are a few ideas:
All of these posts can help put a friendly, intelligent face on what can be a complex industry. Your guiding principle should be to post content that is relevant and interesting, and fine tune it for your audience as it changes.
There are tons of resources for how to market yourself on social media, ranging from simple and free to paid ads and automation. These tips can help you get started until you find what works best for you, your audience and your business.
Want to trade ideas? We’re happy to brainstorm with you! Contact your Brokerage Care Team at 844-273-9330 to get started.