5 Social Media Sites for Small Businesses – Get Smart! [Part 1]

Wednesday 16 June 2010 | Keith J. Hamilton

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thinker03 5 Social Media Sites for Small Businesses – Get Smart! [Part 1]
The hype for Social Media working wonders for small businesses is increasing at a phenomenal rate. However, with all the new social media sites popping up, it can become overwhelmingly difficult to stay in the loop, especially for someone who is just starting out in this field.

Developing and maintaining business structures requires a significant amount of time and effort and at times, it can become very difficult to find the motivation for using social media sites. This post will focus on a few important ones. The most important indicator of business growth is increased sales along with improved cost and time efficiency. The following five social media sites will help you optimize and expand your business practices to achieve better results.


1.
Facebook – The King of Kings:
facebook thumb3 5 Social Media Sites for Small Businesses – Get Smart! [Part 1] With over 400 million users, Facebook is the most popular of social media sites out there and for good reasons too. Consider it a virtual office for small businesses. Set it up as you would set up an actual one. Plan and implement new strategies to increase your sales. Start a campaign to build customer loyalty or send personalized announcements to each of your business shareholders. You will be amazed with the ease of use and the effectiveness of your efforts.

2. Twitter – Innovative and Efficient:
twitter thumb2 5 Social Media Sites for Small Businesses – Get Smart! [Part 1] Moving down the list of the popular social media sites, the second most followed and loved one is Twitter which works on the premise of a 140 character message called a tweet. Think of it as a chat, a brief discussion or an announcement about your small business that you can share with your friends, customers and colleagues throughout the day. It can be anything from a simple Hello to a special “valid for the next hour” discount deal.

3. LinkedIn – Join the Club:
linkedin thumb1 5 Social Media Sites for Small Businesses – Get Smart! [Part 1] When you start a small business, some common strategies would be to join the local and professional associations and know the local people and suppliers. LinkedIn can do just that for you. It is an enormous exhibition hall with all the associations and the contacts you would need for your small business.
4. Xing – Your Own Virtual Desk:
xing thumb1 5 Social Media Sites for Small Businesses – Get Smart! [Part 1] The desk at your office probably has a couple of indexes with numbers of suppliers, a binder containing resumes and business cards or a daily planner. Xing can do all that and much more. You can get your online business card in the rolodex of over eight million businesses worldwide.

5.
Youtube/Flickr – Upload Videos and Pictures:
youf thumb 5 Social Media Sites for Small Businesses – Get Smart! [Part 1] Would you like to put up a screen playing the company profile, an advertisement or a satisfied customer’s review? YouTube will give you all the space to take your videos online. Similarly, Flickr is an online photo album where you can upload all your stills for everyone to see. Facebook also offers the option of uploading videos and creating photo albums, however YouTube and Flickr serve as excellent alternatives.
This is just the tip of the ice berg. There is more to social media for small businesses especially when you start interlinking content from two or more sites; however everyone gets the hang of it gradually. Next week we will bring you more social media sites that can help small businesses thrive!

1. Twitter – Innovative and Efficient:


    Angel

    Thank you posting this. I have all except Xing. Social is the best thing for building your business. I love facebook and linkedIN

    Patrick Barbeau

    Great post, it can be very beneficial to young entrepreneurs that are overwhelmed with all the different types of social media tools, focus on the most important ones and be efficient in your work. This article is also very good for begginers who are just discovering the power of social media. They should use this article as a guideline for their social media map. I only wonder…what will be the next big social website!?

    Keith J. Hamilton

    Thank you all for your feedback :)

    @Angel: You are right. It is. Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter are by far the most popular of these social media sites.

    @Patrick Barbeau: Social media is helping many small business thrive. It is the next big thing and with it companies are able to open new door and attract potential customers from the world over.

    Canute

    blah 2 twitter

    Patrick Barbeau

    @Keith: I know that social media is the next big way to promote, advertise and grow a business, but my true question is, what will come after facebook and twitter? There is always something new that takes the industry by storm which keeps me guessing…is it foursquare with location based social networking? Whats next?!?

    Umair

    I am a new media enthusiast and also a creative professional, well I have profiles on social networks as mentioned on this article, but I wasn’t aware about the no. 4, Xing. Well I am going to check it out! Thanks


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