Social Media, the 5-legged approach [Part 2]
As we discussed in the first post, the five legged approach is to create your own network of sites that feed each other, with each element attracting a slightly different audience and each presenting somewhat different content.
A blog gives you the opportunity to expand on issues that are more complex, and deal in depth with topics that are a part of your business or organization. For example, a Realtor may have a site and a Facebook presence, neither of which is an optimal place to discuss complex issues of title, loans, home inspections and the like. The Realtor can become a source of knowledge for others outside a sphere of influence and attract readers to the blog that may not be likely to visit the primary site. The blog lets you become the topical expert. It is a subtle way to keep you And your business top of mind for a large number of people, many of whom can be potential customers.
The target for your blog is the broader population that is in your market area, including people that are searching for your products or for information about the products and services that your sell.
Attracting the audience will come from your other marketing activities, websites as well as an SEO strategy that includes keywords for all of the items you sell, any services related to those products and your location if you sell in a specific market area.
Your blog content should present you as the expert in your field. Postings can be both lengthy and complex, so long as they are readable and present information that will help the readers.
For example, Heating & Air Conditioning vendors can explain an entire range of information. How and why heat pumps work and save money; what green energy means to the normal household; why heating systems in Montana should be different than those in Louisiana. It is a platform for you to display your expertise.
Links to your primary site, your Facebook pages, Twitter and any other social media sites must be prominently displayed with a short explanation what general content is included in each of those sites. This is the KEY reason to create your own network of interconnected sites.
Make use of RSS feeds to ensure that elements of your blog appear as many places as possible. Let the world know that you know what you are talking about.
Many ask if their blog should be a part of their primary site. Our suggestion is that sites which are designed as blog sites already have the bells and whistles which make it easy to update and which are graphically attractive. Some, with a little work, can support some advertising income when you traffic gets to a critical point.
Twitter is fast becoming the real medium for business. It allows you to keep a constant outbound contact with you potential clients, informing then as you tweet away.
It also allows you to keep up to date on new ideas and events in your own field. It is a two-way street of information like nothing else that has ever been the case.
The target audience for your tweets is self-selecting. That is, it is the other side which follows you rather than you selecting them. It probably won’t be the same as your Facebook friends list. There are a couple of ways that you can build followers, however.
First, search for other tweeters that have similar interests. Follow them and a fairly large number of them will follow you back.
Second, create a profile that shows your primary site and give some information about your interests. Letting the world know that you are a Realtor, for example, and where you live and work can solicit other followers. Include your Facebook name in the bio to generate interest and some new friends.
Third, tweet out useful stuff!
The great thing about Twitter is that you take advantage of someone else’s work. If you see an interesting item in the newspaper, or on Drudge, or virtually anywhere, re-tweet it. If you are a Realtor, and find an article on the housing market in your area, re-tweet it. When interest rates change, re-tweet it. There is a whole world of new and interesting information that you can use to establish yourself as an expert
Always keep in mind that you are promoting your own mini-network of sites. Use a bitly URL to your primary site in every tweet that goes out. Even though the tweet is limited to a small number of characters, you can fit in two URLs and a short descriptive caption.
Pam Velazquez is a content writer for www.RecordsProject.com