Social Media: Connect with your customers

This is a re-post of a column I write for the Albany Buzz, helping businesses get in touch with customers by using the web tools at their disposal.

Have you jumped off the bridge yet?

A mass pandemic has started: with businesses jumping online and trying to create a presence using social media. Are you one of them?  Have you created a Facebook page, or a twitter account?  How much success have you had from it?

If you haven’t already, that’s great. Now you can get involved with your customers, and start off on the right foot.

If you have, don’t worry, but maybe it’s time to re-evaluate.

Over the next few months, I hope I can give you a little bit of insight to set you in good stead on the diverse world called the internet.

So what is this “social media” buzz all about?

Social media, in a word, is “engagement”. It is a channel to communicate with your customers, create a relationship and ask them to do something. There are a few ways you can engage with your customers, the most popular ones are:

  1. Blogging; a website where you write short articles that would interest your target market. If you want to create value for your customers, and get them coming back to you, you need to solve their problems. A great strategy is to post regularly about your customers problems and how you can solve them, talk about issues and news in the industry and post updates about your company’s progress, products, customers or employees.
  2. Facebook; a website where friends and family connect with each other, share their news, information and maintain contact. A user is on Facebook to connect with friends, catch up on news and to socialise. A successful approach for Facebook, promotes this behaviour and focuses, not on sales but, community.
  3. Twitter; a website for people to connect with strangers, businesses and acquaintances. The main use for Twitter is for connecting with interesting people, networking or sharing and reading information. A successful approach for twitter is to create content (information) that will be shared because it is valuable, or to share information that is already valuable.
  4. Youtube; a website for sharing and watching videos that are fun, interesting or engaging; a hugely popular resource for your customers. If you want to create a face-to-face relationship with your customers, this is a great tool to do so. A successful approach for Youtube is to create interesting or valuable videos to educate customers, or even to solve their problems.
  5. LinkedIn; a website for professional networking, often used to hire staff and showcase your curriculum vitae. This is a great resource for B2B businesses, because it is a professional network, it helps you share information about your business, customers and industry in a credible and sincere manner. A successful approach for LinkedIn is to share information about your business, add valuable resources and ask customers to “recommend” your company or product.

To connect with your current and potential customers, these are the tools at your disposal.

Next time we will discuss why you should connect with your customers and how best to do so.

What forms of social media are you using as a business? Have you had much success from your efforts? What ways have you used social media that have worked really well?

Please post your comments below.

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