Using “social media” means using free accounts on the web to connect and interact with other people. Most people are familiar with Facebook and Twitter but there are hundreds more social networking sites. Popular social media sites online right now are Facebook, Tumblr, Pinterest, Twitter, Linkedin, YouTube and Flickr.
Click the image then click it again to see a selection of other social media sites.
Facebook, Tumblr, Pinterest and Twitter are good for sharing your interests, thoughts and events with other people. Linkedin is good for networking and listing your skills and work experience. With a Youtube account you can upload videos for others to see, and with a Flickr account you can upload, store and organize your photos.
On most of these sites you can create a profile of your background and interests, then invite other people to connect to you. Once people have connected to your account and “followed” or “liked you”, they will see your photos and news, and you can see theirs.
You can add the links as icons on your website to encourage people to follow you.
You can also add a social media “share” widget. By clicking on Facebook or other icon in the share widget, people can pass on links to your web pages. A share widget is one of the most important things you can add to your site. Learn more about sharing widgets
Current trends in social media
The current trend is using online tools to manage and connect your memberships.
Another popular trend is the use of social media monitoring tools. These allow you to identify who’s talking about you on their own blogs and other opinion sites.
A third trend is towards social media dashboards that allow you to track the performance of your posts and uploads. These software tools can capture information about things like the number and frequency of your followers, and export these numbers to other kinds of reports.
How to use Facebook and other social media sites
We advise our clients to start with a website or blog then add social media accounts as a way of expanding the news about their websites. For example, when you add a new product to your webpage, you can make a short post on Facebook or Twitter to let people know about it.
Or you could use your Facebook account to re-post articles and sites of interest to you. For example, if you have a gardening company, you might want to post a link to an article on composting you found useful. This kind of streamlining reinforces your topic area.
Do you need to use social media?
This is a question we get asked a lot. And no, you don’t. In fact, you shouldn’t use social media unless you are able and willing to keep your accounts active.
There’s nothing more tedious than linking to a Twitter or Facebook icon on someone’s site and finding a notice that they plan to add some content soon and would you please just keep coming back in case they do… and there’s nothing less impressive than linking to a social media site and finding the “latest” post or tweet is a few months old. If you’re going to ask someone to take the time to click on a link to one of your social media accounts, be prepared to deliver something interesting and up to date!
People who use social media successfully spend several hours every day updating their news, connecting to other people, and forwarding the news of other people. The results can be very beneficial for their businesses. However the amount of time and effort it consumes can easily be beyond the reach of the average person.
We recommend that you envision your website as your “mothership”. Use social media, newsletters, blogs and emails as satellites to circle your website and keep people interested in checking your website for new content.
Interested in incorporating social media or newsletters with your site? Give us a call at 604-731-7020. We have lots of experience and are glad to share some tips.