I could fill my office with hundreds of social media marketing guides, my compilation of blog posts I have read on the topic, numerous how-to guides that I found online, or I could also spend the whole day downloading them to my computer until my fingers go numb and my mind descends into mush reading all of them.
But, I won’t.
Social media isn’t that difficult to get started with as a means to promote your business. If it was, then millions of people wouldn’t use it every day.
Brian Tracy, a motivational speaker whom I’ve liked for many years, once said that there’s an island called “Some Day Isle” which relates to people using the phrase “Someday I’ll.” This saying applies to many small businesses who said that they’ll someday try using social media, but never did.
Why did these businesses never start using social media? The reasons vary but here are the most common:
I know I should be using social media but I just don’t get it.
I simply don’t have time.
Social media isn’t for me/us.
Facebook is a load of crap.
Any of these sound familiar? Without a social media presence, you are completely ignoring an audience. It could be ten people, or as many as ten thousand.
The great thing about social media for business is that it’s a free communication tool that can help you reach many people you could’ve never reached otherwise.
I promise you don’t need any special magic powers to use social media as an effective tool for your small business. Start by downloading one of the free guides you can find online (only one – remember mushy brain and numb fingers) and as you read through it, you will realize that some of the most amazing business techniques aren’t difficult to learn.
The way I see it, there are really only two mistakes small businesses make with social media.
- They never start.
- They think they should be selling all the time.
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Get Started – Don’t Visit Someday Isle
Marketing isn’t a dirty word and free is always nice. The great thing about social media is that it has both components: It’s free and it can be used for marketing.
Intuitively, we all know that businesses use social media to sell. That is why it’s crucial to understand its power and to learn how to use it effectively.
Oh and did I mention it was free?
The same small businesses who stay away from social media happily spend money putting an ad in a newspaper or free local magazine. The truth is, these “free” magazines aren’t really free, and the effectiveness of these ads can’t be measured either.
Business owners claim they will start using social media someday, maybe tomorrow. But so many never do. Usually, the reasons are because they don’t know how to approach it, or what to say, or are too busy to handle it.
Don’t Sell – Be Yourself
Here’s a tip: Be yourself and don’t put on pretenses. Don’t share every blessed detail of your life, but be natural, use your own voice and share content that you think is useful, helpful, and newsworthy. The fancy word is called developing your online voice.
Post on social media regularly and experiment with different ways of doing it. Through trial and error, see what people engage with and try again.
We all tune out, either technically or mentally, to online advertisements. Delivering a message that people are genuinely interested in is the long game.
If you DO want to sell, sell in a natural way without the fireworks and brass bands. Don’t go overboard. We are sick of overboard. Just be yourself.
And start now, yes today. Leave “someday isle.”