Introduction

If you are working in the growing field of social media as we currently are, there are a few things you should know. If you are promoting the use of popular social media products, then Twitter, Tumblr, Facebook, and Google+ can all work wonders for you and your business. They have a broad appeal and can allow you to disseminate helpful information to a large audience. However, if you are looking for a specific type of consumer for your business, social media sites like Twitter could be a waste of time. Twitter is based solely on those you follow and people you follow yourself. It does not have the intended result of reaching a broad audience, nor will it significantly increase your standing in the search engine algorithms.

Remember, though, just because you are posting information doesn’t mean that anyone is actually reading or sharing it. Plus, if you are looking for value-added connections, you can only add/follow one person at a time. You could spend days searching for your perfect consumer and come up with nothing. Sometimes, when searching out advice on the Web, what sounds like good advice might not apply at all to your particular situation and ideal customer.

If you are new to running your own business or enterprise, there are things to be considered. Every virgin to self-employment should first ask him/herself these following questions:

1: What am I selling?

2: What kind of person is going to buy it?3: What is the best way to advertise my service or product?

4: Will my product sell itself? (The answer is no. No product can ever fully sell itself. You will need a way to get your name out in the world.)

5: How much time will I commit to selling my product? (Each company has different merchandise and, therefore, spends either more or less time on advertising than on their actual product.)

Once you have compiled the answers to all of these questions, formulate a plan. But don’t be afraid to make changes.

 Get a Second Opinion

Whenever a brilliant idea comes, play it safe and get a second or third opinion. An idea may sound good to you but will have the complete opposite effect on friends or peers. Find someone you can trust with your idea: perhaps a long-time friend or a family member–even a mentor in a similar line of business.   It is also good to get the opinion of a member of the opposite gender. This will give you insight into the type of consumer you would like your product or service to appeal to. For example, say you are walking down the street with a friend and you see a hat that would look great on you. You show your friend but she/he does not show the enthusiasm you do. That is an immediate indication that what you think is a product that will sell and make you money is not necessarily something another person would want to purchase.  Now I’m not saying you should go out on the street and ask all the people who walk by if they like hats. Just sit and listen to what people say, what they talk about, what they like and what they don’t. Even going on Facebook and looking at your wall or just searching for a certain brand can be a great learning experience. Keep your ear to the ground and listen.

Sell, Sell, Sell

Now that you have found a buyer for your product, spread the word. No great inventor was discovered through silence.  There are a number of ways to advertise, but remember that what you are selling is only appealing to a certain type of buyer, depending on what your product is.

Everything Changes

Marketing, business, social media, and products–all of these are evolving and changing at a break-neck pace these days. You have to stay current without blindly following trends. Investigate, try things, and if they aren’t working in the way you anticipate, do something else.  If everybody tells you Twitter is the place to be, and yet you aren’t connecting with people who care about your message, then move on. If you pick a target market, are consistent and persistent with your message, and you don’t get business, then you should change your target market and your strategies.

 

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