Social Media is fluidly changing the landscape of our personal lives and businesses in varying degrees. For some it seems like another time wasting technology that seeks to invade our lives. Then there are others who see Social Media as an opportunity; for them it’s all changing for the better.
Depending on which perspective you possess, whether you view it as a nuisance or an opportunity I have some good news. Your customers and even your competitors are embracing social media at a growing rate. Even the aging Baby Boomer generation and beyond are incorporating social media into their daily lives. A Baby Boomer friend of mine said she was resisting Social Media with her colleagues and friends until her eighty year old mother got a Facebook page. Her mother bragged so much about her friends and her daily posts that my Baby Boomer friend gave in and setup her own social media accounts. Last I heard, she loves the effect social media has had on her business and life. To confirm you should be including social media in your marketing plan yesterday, please know there are now more than 850 million active Facebook users, with over 200 million added in 2011. (Growth trend Ben Foster)
Also, Nielsen found the following in their third quarter 2011 Social Media Report:
1. Over 80% of all Americans use a social network.
2. Americans spend more time on Facebook than any other U.S.website.
3. Approximately 40% of social media users access their accounts through mobile devices.
4. Nearly 23% of online time is spent on social networks.
5. Facebook is the top destination among social networks and blogs: Nielson found U.S. users spend nearly 10x more time on Facebook than Twitter or LinkedIn.
Even with such staggering statistics, there’s a personal element to most networks that can be addictive. To allow users privacy control, they are given the ability to limit access to their profiles to whomever they choose. Social media savvy authors and writers alike should use them as arms of their credibility growing, influence building and marketing. If not already, you will soon find out, signing up and posting a page should not be the end of it.
Although, I have accounts with more than several other social media there are only three that I give special attention. In my opinion, through all the setbacks, dropouts, throughbacks and changes in the industry three social media websites have emerged as leaders at this time. They are Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.
To achieve social media success, first of all requires a consistent investment of time. It’s important to note, success rarely happens quickly on the social media scene. For example, only 25% of those just getting started in social media saw new partnerships form, as compared to 80% or more of those with three or more years of experience. If you are fortunate to see growth in your social media accounts, you should remember the soft approach works best.
Use relationship marketing, where you genuinely build relationships with your customers and friends then give back to your community. Hopefully, you haven’t experienced this but it’s a known fact if you use social media sites as just a place to sell your book or service and never give back to the communities, you’ll find your friends and feeds disappearing faster than you add them. As with all kinds of marketing, what you do on social media networks depends on what your audience respond to and what your goals are.
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Earma Brown is an expert in book writing, publishing and marketing advice. She focuses on innovative and unique techniques to helping others get their book written, published and ready to sell in record time. She has been successful in using new technologies in publishing her own twelve books and a few of her friends.