08 May The Golden Rule
The last couple of weeks we’ve been talking about using Social Media Marketing as a tool for building your Cash Machine. I hope you’ve taken time to do your own personal research on where your target market is hanging out online. This week is the end of my three part article series on Social Media and I want to close with some basic rules for conducting yourself properly in this arena.
When you’re ready to create your accounts and begin your Social Media journeys, remember the Golden Rule… treat others as you would like to be treated. Remember when we first started using email and Instant Messenger and we often wrote in all caps? That was the equivalent of shouting and could get you in trouble with those self proclaimed internet police. Social Media also has some basic rules of engagement.
Think about how you would approach someone on the street or at a function. For example when I first meet someone I say hello, tell them my name and then tell them about my company. People like to know who they’re talking to –not just a business.
Creating a Twitter, MySpace or Facebook account for marketing purposes can be a tricky thing as these users tend to share more personal information rather than professional. So don’t be afraid to add content that tells users who you are and how you got started doing what you do. Be careful of wording. People don’t want to be “sold to”. Making your content fun will inspire them to learn more when you invite them to view your site or be part of your own communities. Create discussions centered on your product or service that engages your followers. Ask questions that provoke a response and not just by saying “Respond to this post…” The point here is to make it their idea.
Stay involved with your social community friends. Put in your two cents. Be respectful. In other words, if you don’t have something nice or helpful to say, don’t say anything, but if you do have something postitive, this is your opportunity to connect with your audience. That’s the whole point.
When marketing your product or service on these sites, be straight forward. The old bait and switch routine has proven counter productive and can even cost you. You don’t want to create a bad reputation on these sites. The last thing you want is for your online friends to bad mouth your marketing techniques to everyone else.
Another rule for Social Media Marketing is to be a giver. Give more than your receive with your content and posts. What you offer to conversations should be valuable. If it doesn’t apply, avoid posting it. Timing is everything. So if plugging your newest ebook or product isn’t applicable, wait for a better time.
I’ve seen people completely sabotage their online marketing efforts by bad mouthing the competition. Don’t do it. If your product or service is superior, find ways to point out the differences without being negative. Your followers want to learn the benefits in more subtle ways. Put your mind to it. Think of how you make buying decisions regarding your own choices.
Last, if you want Social Media Marketing to work for your Cash Machine you have to stay involved and connected. Make it a part of your routine. Remember this is a tool to find out what your target market is up to. If you stumbled across a great post, comment on it and recommend it to your followers. Show recognition to your people! The more you pay attention and stay involved the more they will too!