Social media is being used by consumers every second of the day (right now in fact!) to engage with and review the brands they regularly use. Twitter has more than 140 million users, Facebook hit a whopping 1 billion members earlier this year and YouTube racks up an average 4 billion views a day. It’s totally clear that social media is a simple marketing solution and opportunity that absolutely no brand can afford to scrimp on.
It’s extremely important for businesses to engage with their customers regularly through their social media platforms. Used correctly and intelligently you can create online communities that will help your brand realise its highest possible potential.
What kind of tools can you use?
As far as social engagement tools go, InboxQ is a good one to start with. This desktop tool can be added to Firefox or Chrome to provide a stream of real-time questions from Twitter that are directly related to your business.
It allows you to reach out to people who are in need of your services but who might have never heard of your brand, therefore creating a unique interaction between you and potential new customers.
When starting InboxQ, you are invited to input a number of keywords about your niche and when anybody from the world of Twitter mentions any of these keywords, you have the opportunity to reply to them as an expert in your field.
Other useful tools include Google Analytics, Tweetdeck and Hootsuite.
Engage with readers and showcase your expert knowledge via blog commenting
The first step here is to find certain blogs that are related to your business niche through targeted blog directories such as BlogCatalog, Technorati, MyBlogGuest or BlogDash (amongst others). Not only will you be able to see what other similar businesses are up to, but you can also engage with other readers about helpful topics.
The trick here is to find relevant posts and then go ahead and wow the readers with your expert and authoritative opinion.
You can also take some tips away to help you write interesting blogs about your brand. The more your business is covered online, the better.
Interact in forums to offer advice and tips
It is quick and simple to find forums on Google where people are asking questions about your industry. When you have located them, you can provide your expert opinion on anything at all that you can help with. This is an easy way to boost the reputation of your brand by providing a source of information, and your customers will really appreciate the personal service you’re providing.
Becoming completely social media savvy can be bewildering but advice like this can be valuable to help small businesses expand their horizons online.