November 4, 2012

Rachel Strella

Social Media: New Territory for Small Business

By Rachel

A Small Business Owner's Guide to Social Media is finally complete and what a fun ride it's been!  As a way to introduce the product, I'm delighted to answer interview questions from Jennifer Grigg. Jennifer purchased my first product, Social Media Manager Profits, in August 2011. Since then, Jennifer has launched her own social media business, Social Dragon Marketing, and is now an affiliate for this guide.

I am also happy to say Jennifer and I have become good friends, yet we've never met in person! That's about the change soon, though, as she plans to make the trip from Ontario, Canada to visit later in the month! Here’s the interview:

Business owners are not satisfied until they know their social media efforts are bringing in sales. What do you tell your customers about measuring ROI (Return on Investment) for social media?
It absolutely has to start with measurable goals. I've found that many business owners fail to realize their full social media potential because their goals are simplistic, misguided or unrealistic. Rather than setting a goal such as "get more money and more clients," businesses need to dive deeper and identify specific targets that will lead to this end result. A few examples of measurable goals could include: increase website traffic, increase engagement among your audience, generate leads, drive foot traffic, build your audience or grow lists through opt-ins. Once you've established identifiable goals set over a specific time period, it will be easier to track ROI.

How will A Small Business Owner’s Guide to Social Media help business owners?
I've seen countless small businesses fail to find their footing with social media simply because they don't understand how it works or treat it like any other marketing they do. Social media is not one-way marketing, and you could even argue that it's not really marketing. Social media is an ongoing, online conversation that you can leverage by knowing how to get the conversation started in the best way possible, and knowing how to respond to that conversation as it unfolds.

My mission with this guide is to provide small business owners with the tools and guidelines necessary to understand social media, select the best social media channels for their business, and create a game plan for success – regardless of where they're at. By the end of this program, small businesses will not only understand the 'why' of social media, but they will also have a working model for the 'how.'

How can business owners purchase A Small Business Owner’s Guide to Social Media?
Simply click here and select the PayPal button at the bottom of the screen. They'll be prompted to enter their credit card or PayPal information. Once complete, the guide will be sent via email.

I've noticed that some small business owners are unsure of how to communicate with their social media audience. Can you offer any advice?
For businesses that have relied heavily on traditional media to market their products or services, this may be an area where they find themselves charting new territory. Traditional media is a one-way communication to the audience. Social media is a conversation with the audience. This shifts the power from the marketing outlet to the consumer, which is both a scary and unfamiliar new place.

My advice is to communicate with the audience – customers and prospects alike – the same as you would if they were entering your store or calling you on the phone.  Social media is a unique opportunity to communicate with your audience and even improve customer service.  My best advice is to rely heavily on posting strong content that will add value to their lives.

For more information on the guide, please click here!

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