2011 really saw the use of social media rise dramatically, and with the launch of Google+ the whole playing field opened up still further. But whilst use of social media marketing expanded, so did the problems. In particular there remained one very big problem with social media. To be honest, in many cases it wasn’t awfully social.
As we gradually become accustomed to writing ‘2012’ on cheques it is perhaps time to take stock of your current use of social media marketing, and ask yourself honestly why you do it, and just how social you are.
For example, if you have joined a social media platform such as Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn or Google+ because you want to sell yourself and your wares, that’s probably not a good approach. If you have joined a social media platform because everyone else has, then you’re probably missing the point.
So how can you aim to be more social with social media in 2012?
Perhaps we should first of all understand why it is important to be sociable. Generally speaking people don’t tend to sign up for social media platforms in order to be bombarded by marketing messages. Most people join because they either want to keep in touch with friends online, or to keep abreast of the latest news, developments and understandings within their industry. Gaining feedback from customers, news and ideas from fellow entrepreneurs and discussing problems or possibilities with people who understand the market all offer benefits to everybody. Just pushing your products and services only aims to benefit one person, and inevitably it won’t even achieve that as people are put off very quickly.
So in order to make better use of social media marketing in 2012 why not set aside scheduled times when you will check and respond to what’s happening? Having a set time each day, or each week when you read and respond to comments on your blog, or comment on other people’s blogs means that you keep the ball rolling, and you spend as much time listening as you do writing. The same is true for using Twitter, LinkedIn and Facebook. Don’t run the risk of becoming obsessed with these opportunities, but at the same time make sure you schedule time to listen and respond, and don’t just see them as a form of free advertising.
What are your online marketing goals for 2012? What will you be trying to do differently, or try for the first time this year? What do you think are likely to be the biggest changes we’ll all be looking back on in 12 months’ time? Leave a comment below to let us know!
Image Credit: thesocialworkplace.com