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Social Media Checklist for Your Small Business

February 19th, 2010 ::

If you are in any type of role that involves marketing, you are doing or exploring how to utilize Social Media in your organization. Most of us have heard the buzzword “Social Media” and have probably seen the icons on websites and in print for places like Facebook and Twitter.

Two primary things a small business needs to look a first before diving into Social Media – first, it is about having a conversation with people and second, you need to have outposts where those people are located. I was inspired by Heidi Rosen’s check list on social media so to help you get moving along, we put together this amended check list to get your business found using social media.

First, Ask Yourself if Your Business is best able to use social media

Heidi Rosen’s social media checklist has some great advice that is worth listing and we will condense some that along with adding some of our own experiences.

  • Find the things that connect with their profession, passions and hobbies – Many companies who try social media thinking this will be a channel to pump out their press releases and information in robot-like format have got it all wrong. If you are selling cars, connect with people’s love of cars not with the corporate mumbo-jumbo. People want you to have a personal face in social media. Heidi mentions that “from a social media marketing perspective, this translates to ways that people can share their hobbies and special interests using photographs, videos, and blogs.
  • Share content that people find useful and want to share with others – Beyond articles that talk about a topic, this includes photos, videos and audio. For example, wedding photographers can show their portfolio from other weddings. Other ideas are fishing guides who put up some videos on fishing tips or bakeries that show their finished products and cool projects off.
  • Look for ways to demonstrate thought leadership – If you an expert in something, you need to show people this so they know that and would consider engaging you. Heidi says that “this can work very well for professionals like lawyers and accountants. Leverage videos, presentations, and Webinars giving how-to tips to explain wills or budgeting.
  • Look for niche communities where your prospects and customers are alreadyFor the independent Firefly/Serenity sci-fi film for charity that I am producing, there is an existing community of Firefly/Serenity fans that love the universe that it is set in.
  • If there are existing outposts, consider contributing to them to engage If so, actively comment and add to the conversation. Offer to create guest posts to share your knowledge and broaden your audience. This means adding real value to the conversation.

Second, understand what your measurements of success are with Social Media

Everybody loves metrics but so few know what should really be measured. Each business is different and the tools vary to get the numbers you might be looking for in a social media program. Heidi Rosen put together some basic metrics for your small business:

  • Revenues. Have sales increased? It’s important to note that it may take time to build up a social media following.
  • Expenses. Track actual costs as well as the time involved in participating in social media marketing.
  • Prospects and customers. Track the number of people who are engaging with your social media efforts. Often, there’s a 90 percent readers/viewers, 9 percent commenters, and 1 percent active content creators breakout.
  • Feedback. Monitor the type, amount, and quality of feedback you’re receiving

Photo: iStockphoto (licensed to Steven Fisher)

The views expressed here are the author's alone and not those of Network Solutions or its partners.

Get more small business resources from Network Solutions

Web.com is now offering forums designed to support small businesses in cities throughout the US. Learn more about these forums here: http://Businessforum.web.com/

Tags: ,
Posted in Marketing, small business, social media, Technology | 18 Comments »

  • http://www.DropShipAccess.com/ Drop Ship

    Thanks for the great post. Using social media to improve business needs a lot of survey and thinking. Checking out the type of prospects required for one’s business is important. Searching and connecting with such people is important.

  • http://www.DropShipAccess.com/ Drop Ship

    Thanks for the great post. Using social media to improve business needs a lot of survey and thinking. Checking out the type of prospects required for one's business is important. Searching and connecting with such people is important.

  • http://www.DropShipAccess.com/ Drop Ship

    Thanks for the great post. Using social media to improve business needs a lot of survey and thinking. Checking out the type of prospects required for one's business is important. Searching and connecting with such people is important.

  • http://www.8acertification.net/ SBA Program

    Thanks for sharing all that information! If you can utilize social media correctly, it can become one of the most powerful marketing tools for your small business.

  • http://www.8acertification.net/ SBA Program

    Thanks for sharing all that information! If you can utilize social media correctly, it can become one of the most powerful marketing tools for your small business.

  • http://www.8acertification.net/ SBA Program

    Thanks for sharing all that information! If you can utilize social media correctly, it can become one of the most powerful marketing tools for your small business.

  • http://www.8acertification.net/ SBA Program

    Thanks for sharing all that information! If you can utilize social media correctly, it can become one of the most powerful marketing tools for your small business.

  • Anonymous

    This article is really nice ! It’s very useful for people who are looking forward to start their own business on small scale .
    So the Post helps to know how to promote our small scale business in proper & efficiant manner through social media . It greatly helps in keeping track of sales , expenses , customers , profit ,etc .

  • http://www.gobubbago.com.au/index.php?main_page=index&cPath=31 Twin Pushchairs

    This article is really nice ! It’s very useful for people who are looking forward to start their own business on small scale .
    So the Post helps to know how to promote our small scale business in proper & efficiant manner through social media . It greatly helps in keeping track of sales , expenses , customers , profit ,etc .

  • http://www.gobubbago.com.au/index.php?main_page=index&cPath=31 Twin Pushchairs

    This article is really nice ! It’s very useful for people who are looking forward to start their own business on small scale .
    So the Post helps to know how to promote our small scale business in proper & efficiant manner through social media . It greatly helps in keeping track of sales , expenses , customers , profit ,etc .

  • twinpushchairs

    This article is really nice ! It's very useful for people who are looking forward to start their own business on small scale .
    So the Post helps to know how to promote our small scale business in proper & efficiant manner through social media . It greatly helps in keeping track of sales , expenses , customers , profit ,etc .

  • twinpushchairs

    This article is really nice ! It's very useful for people who are looking forward to start their own business on small scale .
    So the Post helps to know how to promote our small scale business in proper & efficiant manner through social media . It greatly helps in keeping track of sales , expenses , customers , profit ,etc .

  • http://www.gobubbago.com.au/index.php?main_page=index&cPath=31 Twin Pushchairs

    This article is really nice ! It's very useful for people who are looking forward to start their own business on small scale .
    So the Post helps to know how to promote our small scale business in proper & efficiant manner through social media . It greatly helps in keeping track of sales , expenses , customers , profit ,etc .

  • http://www.gobubbago.com.au/index.php?main_page=index&cPath=31 Twin Pushchairs

    This article is really nice ! It's very useful for people who are looking forward to start their own business on small scale .
    So the Post helps to know how to promote our small scale business in proper & efficiant manner through social media . It greatly helps in keeping track of sales , expenses , customers , profit ,etc .

  • Dan Latendre

    Great tips. Another tip when planning your social media strategy for your business – is to think about how you can leverage these new tools not only outside your company, but also inside as well. Most industry experts talk only about how to use Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and other social tools for external marketing and customer engagement.

    But, many organizations are also implementing these new social tools to improve employee and team productivity. If you would like to learn more… you can download a free whitepaper from our site. We have also offer a free online social media playbook to help companies – large or small with their social media strategies and implementations.

    I hope this helps.

  • Dan Latendre

    Great tips. Another tip when planning your social media strategy for your business – is to think about how you can leverage these new tools not only outside your company, but also inside as well. Most industry experts talk only about how to use Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and other social tools for external marketing and customer engagement.

    But, many organizations are also implementing these new social tools to improve employee and team productivity. If you would like to learn more… you can download a free whitepaper from our site. We have also offer a free online social media playbook to help companies – large or small with their social media strategies and implementations.

    I hope this helps.

  • Dan Latendre

    Great tips. Another tip when planning your social media strategy for your business – is to think about how you can leverage these new tools not only outside your company, but also inside as well. Most industry experts talk only about how to use Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and other social tools for external marketing and customer engagement.

    But, many organizations are also implementing these new social tools to improve employee and team productivity. If you would like to learn more… you can download a free whitepaper from our site. We have also offer a free online social media playbook to help companies – large or small with their social media strategies and implementations.

    I hope this helps.

  • Dan Latendre

    Great tips. Another tip when planning your social media strategy for your business – is to think about how you can leverage these new tools not only outside your company, but also inside as well. Most industry experts talk only about how to use Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and other social tools for external marketing and customer engagement.

    But, many organizations are also implementing these new social tools to improve employee and team productivity. If you would like to learn more… you can download a free whitepaper from our site. We have also offer a free online social media playbook to help companies – large or small with their social media strategies and implementations.

    I hope this helps.