Meet Our Guest: Social Media Strategist and Realist, Jennifer Gage
Why focus on social media?
If thereâs one thing that has stood out in the world of business in the past few years, itâs been the focus on social media. Thereâs no doubt that social media has an impact on the lives of many and has become the way many people receive and send information online. In this day and age, it just doesnât make sense for any business to ignore social media. But youâve got to be careful. Social media can be a powerful marketing tool for businesses, but one always has to be mindful of time, resources and response. And thatâs exactly what our guest blogger, Jennifer Watson, is going to help us do. We are lucky to have her here for a series of 11 posts and sheâs going to deliver us plenty of advice to ensure we make the most of the opportunity social media offers us. Without further ado, Iâll just let Jennifer introduce herselfâ¦
Hi, Iâm Jennifer Watson. Iâve been getting my feet wet, often drenched, in social media for business since about 2007. Iâve managed social media for my own businesses, advised countless other businesses and continue to learn and grow as social networks evolve over time. I mention the evolution of social media because what you find today, may not be what you find tomorrow. While everyone always thinks of social giant Facebook and longtime player LinkedIn, most of the big networks we talk about today are only a few years old. That makes social media a very new business tool, so there is plenty to learn and plenty of exploration to do. I hope to help you with that learning and exploration with my guest post series here.
A few stats to get us started:
* According to a 2011 Q3 report by Nielsen, more than 80% of Americans use at least one social network. That is a staggering number and one that should really get our attention as business owners.
* In a Comscore report from the end of 2011, they stated that Facebook accounts for 1 in every 7 minutes spent online. Remember, as mentioned earlier, social media is becoming the way people receive and send information. Itâs their go-to place.
* Social Skinny.com reports that 91% of social marketers increased website traffic through social activity. Thatâs what we all want, right? More eyeballs on our web pages is always a good thing.
* While it was a relatively small sample of 1000 Facebook users, these results from Lab42.com are very interesting. In their survey, they found that 50% of Facebook fans prefer brand pages to company websites, which leads us to an obvious question. Do you have a Facebook page and if you do, are you leveraging your Facebook page effectively?
What weâll be talking about in this series: While I have mentioned some pretty impressive stats, we have to mix it with a dose of reality. Many people are flocking to social media, but our businesses are not social media. Thatâs where I see a lot of people making big mistakes. They put so much effort into social media, they forget that they are actually trying to run a business. Social media is a great lead generator and can help us form closer connections to our existing audiences, but all that is worthless if we neglect everything else we need to be doing. Thatâs why I will always be mindful of that when I share my thoughts in this series. I will show you how to use your time wisely and how to streamline things, wherever possible. Some of the topics weâll be covering in the coming posts include:
- Understanding the big social networks and deciding where you should be
- Managing your time effectively
- Growing your following and establishing yourself as a valuable resource
- Tools to streamline your marketing, without looking like a robot
â¦and a bunch of other stuff. Weâll even talk about some unexpected benefits of social media marketing, so hold onto your hats, weâve got a lot to cover.