Don’t depend on a social network!
It is very often that I see small, medium and large businesses build a strong dependence on a social media platform. Whilst I am all for social media, (I provide social media services), I do feel quite strongly about having a strong dependence on any network. I thought I would share my advice with you and explain the same way I would to an existing client. I hope you find this useful.
This is the main problem with most social media platforms, they have a vested interest in keeping you regular with your advertising to them and building a strong dependence, at the end of the day, they have to make their money no? Furthermore most clients of mine feel obliged to advertise Facebook, Twitter and other social media platforms by putting the “FIND US ON FACEBOOK/TWITTER/YOUTUBE” furthermore they tend to pitch in a few great prizes to increase fan count. All this is great stuff, but wait, what happens when Facebook, Twitter etc change the way they operate? What happens when Pinterest, Foursquare, Google + show up?
Two greatest social media tips:
1. Purchase a domain for social media use, I like to do the following “my” ie mybusinessname.com or purchase a “.me” domain. Now if you currently have a major focus on one platform eg. Facebook you can direct your domain there, alternatively if you use a mix of social media – go ahead splurge a pittance on a landing page with links to your different social media. Nothing fancy even something as simple as the below.
I also suggest setting up a mailing list a sign up form and a few other goodies, you can add a Facebook and Twitter widget to further enhance all of this, but the first step is getting your domain sorted with a landing page, this really comes into play when you advertise in Print, TV, Radio, Mobile(SMS) etc, as opposed to FIND US ON FACEBOOK – http://www.facebook.com/businessname you can place www.mybusinessname.com looks stunning doesn’t it and guess who you are branding? You got it yourself, next benefit is that with this landing page you can also create a call to action prior to landing in Facebook. Collecting an email address might be a great idea!
2. Keep Direct Contact - This is one of the most important things you can do, if you never take my advice on anything social media related take this piece of advice, collect an email address and any other contact details you feel your fan may be willing to give you. – Every time you run a competition, a sweepstakes, a give away, a special discount, free information, anything; collect an email and any other information you can. There are some great solutions to help you integrate this into Facebook or you can go the extra mile and use a custom app or an app solution company such as North Social – Social Stack and a number of others. Mailchimp gives you a Facebook App to, for Free so no excuses collect the email address.
Special E-mail Marketing tip coming up : Furthermore if you can get your client/fan to send you an email to get listed from their own mail client; (better be a good prize), you are almost guaranteed to wind up on the safe sender list, in most cases automatically! This also works with replies to emails eg. Competition where you receive answers via email. It creates a confirmed two way communication.
So why is the email address so important? – Well the next social media platform that is a big hit will most definitely have a mass invite option, they always do! If you have the email addresses you have direct contact to move them to the new platform with you; or find them on it as may be the case, thus saving you from platform dependence.
Conclusion – Social Media Independent advice. List
- Get a domain for your social media.
- Link it to your social media of choice or preferably to a landing page
- Collect emails
- Get your email contacts to email you at least once.
- Advertise your social media domain as opposed to vanity URL’s
- Get some fancy SEO work done to rank your social media landing page for terms such as “yourbusiness name Facebook”, “yourbusiness name Twitter” you don’t need to be first just close enough will do.
- Get your fans to favourite your landing page/bookmark it, Pinit whatever
- Give your fans an added value to use your landing page.
Special Thanks to:
Jim Dougherty @leaderswest for sharing Kimberly’s awesome post and advice on Facebook Vanity URL’s (which I am in favour of – I just want you to add a domain to – Keep you busy that’s all).
Kimberly Castleberry@AskKim for taking the time to write this post Facebook Fan Page Vanity URL
Special Thanks goes to you for reading this post and commenting if you like it