Posts Tagged ‘Relationships’
2013 will be a monumental year for blog marketing. Blogging, when done correctly, can be used as a direct and indirect mechanism to attract a large variety of visitors to your desired social-media page. The more visitors you drive to your sites the better probability of driving business awareness, and essentially, new customers. Blogs establish authority and interaction with visitors, existing clients, prospective clients, and referral partners. Listed below are 3 important reasons why every business should utilize business blogging as a marketing strategy in 2013 and beyond.
1.) Builds Your Brand: Blogging will help people understand what your company is all about and will further your company’s credibility by showcasing your knowledge. If you update your blog daily with compelling and relevant information, people will continue to visit. Visitors will be more likely to explore your other online sites and your company will be more likely to earn their business.
2.) Creates A Relationship With Clients: Blogging is an excellent way to connect with your clients if you cannot find the time for a face-to-face meeting. Blogging also allows you the opportunity to gain feedback from your clients, grow your database, and most importantly, strengthen your relationships. This is also an excellent way to show authenticity to your prospective clients by staying clear of solicitation or sales-talk.
3.) Expands Your Own Knowledge: When blogging, you are constantly researching and finding new information to highlight for your customers. Blogging will keep you, and your business up-to-date with current information and will make sure your business reaches its optimal potential.
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Running a successful social-media campaign is a bit like running a railroad. First you have to be where the people are. Then you’ve got to keep a regular schedule so the people know when to get on board. Finally, you’ve got to offer your customers something they can’t get from your competition. And, in this case, that means offering quality content consistently and regularly. It also means providing superior service and treating your pages and profiles as an important extension of your business.
Here are some things to think about …
Location: Where you set up shop matters in any business. Open a bait shop 300 miles from the water and see how well that goes. The same is true in social media. Fortunately, this part isn’t very difficult. There are many sites out there. Some are new. So are niche. Some offer some things and others offer others. Ultimately, you want to be where the people are. Niche sites can be good for networking within your industry but new business comes from communicating with the public. And the best way to develop relationships with people online is to go where most of them are. And yeah, that means Facebook is probably a good bet.
Schedule: This is the part that trips a lot of people up. It’s one thing to survey the available social-media sites and get started registering. It’s an altogether different thing to log in regularly and use your profiles and pages to your advantage. Sadly, though it can be done, it isn’t automatic. You have to have something to share and you have to share it on a regular basis. How often you update your pages is up to you. Some social-media gurus will tell you you have to update your pages with new content multiple times a day. Fortunately, updating on any schedule – as long as it’s kept – will likely benefit you. Start slow. Come up with a post every other week. Then up the frequency as you get into a rhythm. What works for you is what works for you. In other words, set the pace you’re comfortable with and let the people know when to expect you. Regularity is familiarity. And familiarity breeds business.
The Extras: It really shouldn’t be a hard sell to get some people to visit, like, follow, or recommend your new social-media profiles. It’ll cost them nothing and make your page seem populated and more interesting to newcomers. So ask some previous clients, referral partners, and other professional contacts to stop by your new page. They’ll be happy to do it and you’ll end up with increased visibility and some potential new connections. But that’s where the extras come in. Now that you’ve got some people visiting, what you put up on you page determines whether or not they’ll come back. Offer good content, interesting info, be available, and answer any questions or comments you get. In other words, treat your social-media sites as an extension of your business and treat your fans and followers like they’re your customers. Be consistent and available, professional and prompt and they’ll return to you in the future.
There are always those that are slow to adopt new technologies. There were likely a stubborn few who insisted that the horse-and-carriage was, in fact, a much more effective means of transportation than the early automobile. Then there are those that fundamentally misunderstand the medium, like those that thought television would be a passing fad. In other words, innovation can lead to myths, mistakes, and misconceptions.
Below, we tackle some common social-media myths in an effort to better understand the benefits and best practices of any online effort.
It’s Not For Business: Social-media marketing is good for any business, despite those that say it only works for some. After all, in any business endeavor, getting word out about your services is the name of the game. Social media is yet another platform to do just that. Keeping in touch with clients, announcing new products or services, educating, communicating, and engaging your customer base are made easier with a smart strategy and some effort.
It’s For Kids: Last year, social networking was named the top emerging channel for lead generation. In addition to being an effective way of branding your business and syndicating your message, social media has been found to help build and maintain businesses by improving their relationships with their clients, customers, partners, and prospects.
It’s Automatic: For as many people that will tell you social media won’t work for your business, there are those that will tell you that it’s easy, automatic, and requires little more than setting up the pages and reaping the rewards. But having a successful networking strategy, whether online or off, means work. In order to build and keep traffic coming to your profiles and pages, you’ve got to maintain your presence and offer something of value. That means, responding to comments, offering interesting content, keeping your pages fresh, and, most of all, participating.
It’s About The Numbers: Having the most Facebook fans in your region certainly can give the impression of success. But having 20,000 fans outside of your target audience only means your business isn’t doing as well as your Facebook page. Don’t get discouraged. Having five fans that bring you consistent business is better than having a million that don’t.
More tips from The Ibis Network here, here, here, here, and here, and here.
The Ibis Network / www.theibisnetwork.com
Active Rain is the largest and most active social networking site for real-estate professionals. As such, it’s a perfect place to begin refining your online efforts. Use the tips below to maximize your profile or, if all else fails, grab some ideas from the nearly 200,000 profiles currently registered.
Start Blogging: Whether or not you already have a blog, Active Rain’s blogging tools are a great way to broaden your audience. If you’re already blogging, consider re-posting your blog posts on Active Rain or write supplementary information with a link back to the original post. If nothing else, the search-engine benefits alone make it worth while. Also spend some time reading through other posts on the site and offer a comment or some friendly encouragement. Like any social-media network, it’s about relationships. The more relationships you form, the more likely they lead to a potential referral partner or client.
Link Active Rain to Your Online Accounts: Having an online network is all but useless unless you keep your profiles fresh and full of content. So, wherever possible, link your social-media sites. Connect your Active Rain account to your Facebook page, or any other accounts you have. Having your profiles automatically updated will save you time and provide even more exposure for your business and services.
Take Advantage of Your Profile: On Active Rain, the more complete your profile, the more points you receive. The more points you receive, the more visible you are when people search for agents in your area. In other words, take some time and add a bio, testimonials, work experience, and any other pertinent background information to your profile. Use anchor text to link back to your business website, blog, or anything else you’d like to share.
Learn From Observation: If you get discouraged, scroll through Active Rain’s success stories for inspiration. Click through and see how other Realtors are using their Active Rain profiles. Steal an idea or two and apply it to your page. If it worked for them, there’s no reason it can’t work for you too.
Josh Millar / The Ibis Network / www.theibisnetwork.com
To learn more about the Ibis Network’s Professional Networking Suite for Realtors and Mortgage Professionals which features these valuable marketing tools:
* Your own Real-Estate or Mortgage blog updated daily with original content
* Monthly e-newsletter ready to send to your contact list
* Social Media set-up on the 8 major networking sites
* Search Engine Optimization (SEO) of your business website
If you’d like a free Real-Estate blog designed for you… no strings attached – click here: http://theibisnetwork.wordpress.com/want-your-own-real-estate-blog-for-free/
If you’d like a free Mortgage blog designed for you… no strings attached – click here: http://theibisnetwork.wordpress.com/want-your-own-mortgage-blog-for-free/