I recently went with two of my Linkmedia 360 coworkers, Renae Dabney and Debbie Lamb, to discuss our social media and web development services with a prospect. I had volunteered to learn more about social media; prior to the visit, my social media experience consisted of an underused Facebook page and an 80% complete LinkedIn profile (it looks complete to me).
My contribution to our presentation would be researching what the prospect had social media-wise, personally and professionally. Then I would make recommendations. “No problem,” I told myself,” I’ll l know as much as anyone else about social media by the time I’m done.”
After a couple of hours poring over numerous social media sites, I felt it was time to apply what I’ve learned. Most are informative, entertaining and can be utilized as business promotional tools. I detailed what the prospect should be doing and what he should be changing.
I kept in mind the various ways social media could help our prospect, a local business owner, who wanted to have a “community presence”. Their first priority needs to be making sure they add (and link to) local content wherever and whenever they can. And then I moved on to specific examples:
• You’ve recently moved into a new office; what a great topic for a weekly blog.
• Tweet this upcoming weekend’s activities you’ll be attending in the community.
• Update your Facebook /LinkedIn/ YouTube/ Google+/ Pinterest, etc. accounts with this info as well.
• Don’t forget your website(s) and any personal social media accounts; you have to make sure your message is consistent.
• Make sure all of your marketing materials show the social media sites you’re using.
• Invite all of your current clients to visit your sites.
• And be sure to link your sites wherever and whenever you can, so you can post on more than one site at a time.
These are just the initial steps, and quite a bit for one person to keep track of. I have a new respect for those who spend hours creating and maintaining business social media accounts, thinking of interesting and informative content to add, finding interesting and informative content to link to, and doing so on a regular basis.
Our presentation went great, and our recommendations were well received. We left excited, and the prospect told us later that he “loved” us. Unfortunately, we just received word that he will not be using our services. Disappointing of course, but the time we spent with the prospect made a social media believer out of him (and me). It was a learning experience for us both. After all, isn’t that what it’s all about?