There is no doubt that social media marketing has taken the lead inonline marketing strategies.Social media sites have exploded andcontinue to grow in number and popularity. If you own an onlinebusiness, it can be very difficult to know where to begin in thisextensive marketing arena.
There are dozens and dozens of social sites and more popping up allthe time. I have compiled a list of the ten best social sites with which to get you started. I have chosen these sites by my own professionalopinion and by actual popularity.
1. Facebook – Facebook has an estimated 850 millionusers! This is the most popular social site and my favorite as well.Facebook is very versatile in what you can do with your page. Be sure to open a business account and also read the rules for businesses. Fillout your profile completely. Add images and videos to your page to makeit more interesting and interactive. Visit your page every day and posthelpful information, links and resources. Answer all comments promptly.
2. Twitter – Twitter has 200 million estimatedactive users. I like Twitter because it is quick, easy and effective for marketing your business. You simply add tidbits of information, newproduct info, sales and/or specials, links, motivational quotes, etc.and tweet! Keep your tweets professional and beneficial to yourfollowers. Don’t tweet things like what you’re having for dinner or what movie you just watched. Get involved with other tweeters andparticipate!
3. LinkedIn – LinkedIn now has over 150 millionestimated users. The thing I like about LinkedIn is how you canparticipate in groups that interest you or will benefit your business.Join groups and be sure to participate in the discussions by offeringreal and helpful information and advice. Follow their guidelines on howto completely and effectively fill out your profile.
4. Google+ – Google+ is one of the newer socialsites but it already has an estimated 65 million users! I must admit, Ihave not done much with Google+ as of yet but I do like the format andversatility of the site. Be sure to add the +1 Google feature to yourwebsite so people can click it to show they like your site. This willhelp you in the ratings. Again, be sure to complete your profile andspend time daily or at least weekly on your Google+ page.
5. Pinterest – With over 10 million active users,Pinterest is growing in popularity very quickly. Pinterest has come upwith something a little different. You are given a pinboard to addvisual items such as photos, graphs, videos, etc. Pinning helpful visual information is a great way to attract people to your pinboard. You canadd comments as well. People respond more to visual items than justwords so get over to Pinterest and start pinning!
6. Ecademy – Ecademy has over 17 million users.Ecademy is a membership site for business owners to connect, help andgrow with each other. There are paid and free memberships. Take the time to build relationships with other business owners. You can start yourown clubs, write blog posts, and participate in discussions. This siteis more involved than some social sites and will take more time to learn to use effectively.
7. YouTube – YouTube has an estimated 300 millionusers. YouTube is a video sharing site. Making an effective marketingvideo to share on YouTube can have a dramatic effect on your sitetraffic. Show your expertise with instructional and informationalvideos. You can also present slide shows to market your products and/orservices. Set up an account and start uploading those business growingvideos.
8. StumbleUpon – Despite a “stumble” in growth,StumbleUpon is now growing in popularity and has an estimated 20 million users. StumbleUpon is a social site that allows the users to shareinteresting and helpful websites. You will need to be an active user toreap the benefits from this site.
9. Ryze – With less than a million members, Ryze isnot the most popular of the social networking sites but it can beeffective. Ryze is similar to LinkedIn in that it is a place forprofessionals to grow, connect and help each other succeed. Joinnetworks that target your business and network with other businessowners.
10. Blogs – Blogs are very popular social sites andthere are lots of them. Search for blogs that target your niche andbecome active with guest posts, comments, etc. Participating on blogscan help you make connections and get traffic you might not have gotten. Also, if you do not have your own blog yet, be sure to get started. Iwould recommend WordPress but there are other blog services available.
If you are a business owner, you really cannot avoid social media inthis marketing age. So rather than ignore it, you need to study it,learn it and participate in it. Once you do, you will find it to be avery enjoyable and beneficial experience!