In terms of business-building, it seems Social Media has two major benefits:
1. Width (Quantity). Social Media allows one to connect with people with whom they otherwise would never have had the opportunity. More important than entertainment or business celebrities, this includes the local CEO or decision-maker you’ve been trying to meet for a long time. Well, do it correctly, and now you can.
2. Depth (Quality). The correct use of social media also allows for deep relationships to be cultivated. 140 characters or a post (blog, on Facebook or LinkedIn) are only the beginning. You probably already understand the how-to aspect. If not, there are a multitude of books, articles and blog posts from which you can learn.
However, one disturbing trend — that need not be — regards Twitter and the many retail businesses that are joining. I said businesses instead of people because they join as businesses, not as people. And, typically, people (consumers) don’t do business with businesses…they do business with people running or representing those businesses.
Often, there is no picture of a person; a human being with whom we can connect. Instead, only a logo. Most people don’t do business with logos; they do business with people.
And (Burg still on soapbox), not only do they join as a business, their tweets are totally “Me-Focused.” It’s all about their products, the specials they have going on, and any links are to their information.
It’s as though they’ve heard the news…“If You’re In Business You Need To Be On Twitter!!!!!”
And, I agree. However, it seems many have not taken the time to learn “how to be on Twitter.”
The same basic principles apply as in “real life.” Engage, find ways to add value to others (aside from your products), cultivate relationships to the point that people know you, like you and trust you.”
Of course, this doesn’t mean you can’t promote yourself and your business. It’s not an “either/or” situation. Absolutely promote. But do it the right way and not only will your business make a lot more money, your business (I mean, you) will enjoy yourself immensely.
Do you see this trend, as well, or am I off-base? And, if you agree, how would you suggest retail merchants make their Twitter experience more fruitful…and multiply their business? 🙂
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Great Post Bob.
I am now very grateful for Twitter as when I first started in Network Marketing I was doing what lots are still doing “Begging to buy” as many like to call it Spamming. I Now make this totally about building relationships with others , that is when they find interest in exactly what I do.
Great Points made here Bob, EVERY business must have a Twitter ” It has gone wild ” Loving the Social Network and still relativity new to Twitter but find cutting your Characters down to 140 rather that 400+ YOU can tell much more about yourself Or your Business in much better words.
Bob , still learning and very appreciative for all you do and love your Post’s , Blogs , Tweets ect ..
I couldn’t agree with you more! I find that many business owners look at social media like yellow page ads. When I consult with small business owners its important to help them shift from a mentality of how can I get to how can I serve.
Once they fully understand and implement go giver way of doing business they will start to see significant results in their business.
Keep up the good work!
Great post Bob. I see so many business posts on Facebook and Twitter that are totally self-serving or more just not clued in to what I care about.
Thought provoking as always! I woudl love to hear of better ways to use a business facebook page.
Mike, Darien, Joel and Amy, thank you for your kind feedback and thoughtful comments, my friends!
You are ‘singing my tune’ Bob!!!
LOL! I work w/so many people on how to use facebook, twitter, etc. They want to grow business, which is great! Those who are willing to learn, do very well! It’s amazing the results that they get when they ‘get it’ and offer value, and engage, etc.
75% of my business comes via social media (some directly through social media, some by referral via social media), and the rest is some form of referral. It doesn’t come by screaming “pick me pick me!” 🙂
You already know that I agree. 🙂 I’m the person who can’t understand why folks connect if they never want to talk to you!
IMO – you don’t connect with someone then email them some “next big deal”. Say hi. Tell me why you decided to link to me or something specific about my profile so I know that “you care” about something more than my pocketbook.
I never mind ads – from people I know; again the relationship building stuff first.
I never mind ads in my LinkedIn Groups — just put them under Promotion and post them just once.
I never mind ads — if you’re given me good content first, have spent time getting to know me (phone call or Skype), you target what you’re sending me, and you don’t do it daily.
I never mind someone removing me as a connection because “we’re not a good match” as a strategic partner, referral partner, etc.
What happens when you take the time to get to know me and are clear about who you work with and what you do? I will remember you the next time someone really does want your services or product.
Great post Bob! Social media is so popular because people want to connect with people. No one enjoys the hard sell in person or on line! Let’s resolve to continue to push connecting as individuals and leave the hard sell to those who wish to live a life of unfulfilled potential!
I agree with most of what you have said and have really tried to make my website http://www.classiclegacy.com reflect not only products that we sell but include information that will be helpful to our partners and highlight their businesses also. I have a question. I began my Facebook business page and Twitter business account with a photo of Classic Legacy products as the profile image. That has been my profile image since I began social media about two years ago and although it is not my logo I feel it is recognized as “Classic Legacy”. My personal Facebook page of course has my photo. In your opinion do you think it is wrong for a business to have a logo, a photo of their store, or photo of products in their profile? Some of my partners include The Hotel Del Coronado, Borsheims, Robert Mondavi Winery, and The Greenbrier. I have just made a quick review of their Facebook pages and all either have logos or a photo of their buildings. In many cases business have a team of people that post …..not just one individual. So would you say all of these businesses including Classic Legacy are missing out by not having a photo of a person as their profile?
When it comes to social networking, it’s the personal touch tht means the most. So if you have 4 people on your team, and they all join LinkedIn (for example) they would each create their own profile with their photo.
I don’t think it’s “wrong”, however, perception means a lot. I hold off connecting with people who use a logo (and I’ve heard that I”m not alone.
if you read, for example the Linkedin Agreement, they mention that your photo and not logo’s belongs on the profile, and that your profile is personal. However, you have the option of adding your Company Profile then all your employees can be a part of that.
Heck, you can try it with photo’s for 6 months and monitor how things are going.
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Thank you. I appreciate your very kind comments!