Top 10 Quick Hit List for Social Media

It’s a hot summer day, so perhaps I shouldn’t have gotten so distraught by some remarks from clients throughout the day about their challenges with social media.  What struck me was that most had forgotten some of what we consider the Top 10 things to do for success.  The list below is short and sweet, admittedly.  Just the right accompaniment for a tall cool glass of iced tea.

1.   Have a plan

You can’t know where you’ve been or where you’re heading without one. Be sure you evaluate social media plans in the context of all your business sales and marketing initiatives.

2.   Take baby steps –then EXCEL

There’s so much out there, so take one piece at a time and boldly go forth and do one part well before moving on to the next.

3.   Listen

It’s easy to jump in and start writing, but do you know what are others saying about you?  About your industry?  Trends?  Assess the community in which you want to reside.

4.   Clearly define your business objectives

 How can you justify an expense of time and energy if you don’t know how these tools can enhance your business?  Don’t try to do everything at once, but know what you want out of this tool.  Then see #1 and 2.

5.   Integrate online and offline initiatives

Mix the old with the new.  It’s the 1 + 1 = 3+ theory.  You will make a critical omission if you do not link your online social media presence directly to your website and other business plans.

6.    Test select tools and applications

Assess what works best for your business in terms of time and results.  Some online sites have more applications than others.  However, most can be integrated via links and bitty urls.  Explore the new world and see what riches it has in store.

7.   Participate and be consistent in your postings

Let people know you have an online presence and build your reputation by commenting and posting.  It is a bit like exercise though…you need to do it consistently.

8.    Evaluate your success

Measure what’s working.  You do this for every other company initiative and this should be no exception.  Why is one method or site working and another not?  This isn’t about ROI in the typical sense, but rather about building credibility and thought leadership.  What is the quality of your interactions and/or comments made by others?

9.   Adjust and adapt

Your first attempts in social media need to be examined and adjusted periodically.  Remember, this is not static, any more than other sales initiatives, so assess and change where and what is necessary.  Try and try again.

10.  Build on your initiatives

There’s no time to gloat or rest on your laurels.  After you master one aspect of your social media presence, add to it and be sure to integrate with your other sales initiatives.  Consider your website, professional and company profiles on LinkedIn, Facebook fan page (more appropriate for B2C), company blog, etc.  You’ve just started—keep up the good work.

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