6 Social Media Business Channels

This post was written by John White on Mon, 10 Aug 2009 10:15:19 +0000
Posted Under: keywords,marketing as conversation,online marketing,search engine marketing,social media,tell your story

6 new channels!

6 new channels!

Hire a writer who understands that the social media business story is still warming up, and that it consists of several different channels.

How is your business using social media in all its channels? More importantly, how are the people inside your business using them?

I hope you are past the notion that this is all about a bunch of teenagers exchanging gossip, or that this is just “the new t.v.”? There are plenty of social media business success stories, including these compiled about Twitter by MarketingProfs.

There’s a strangely inverse relationship between business and social media:

  • Business starts out as being about money, but ends up being about relationships.
  • Social media channels starts out as being about relationships, and end up being about money (if you play them right).

Your Social Media Business in 6 Channels

So, what is your business in social media? Can you tell the players? Do you even have a program yet?

Heather Lutze of the Findability Group summarized social media for business as being in 6 main channels (as of this summer, anyway). With a tip of the hat to Heather, here’s my supplement to her summary:

  1. LinkedIn – ranks well in search engines, strong focus on business and professional content, good place to describe your company.
  2. Facebook – not as useful for search engine marketing because the personal pages are not indexed (group pages, however, are indexed). Facebook started out as strong in personal networking (think colleges and margaritas) and has gained a lot of momentum by facilitating business-to-consumer relationships.
  3. MySpace – The social media darling of yesteryear, its reputation has not benefited much from news items detailing bad behavior among its users. Hey, it’s what we had first, so we all saw what we could get away with. Got a band? Be on MySpace.
  4. YouTube – Yes, you too can market yourself with video; just ask Blendtec. You can also screw it up if you’re not careful; just ask Bank of America. Well indexed for search engines. Not as easy as updating a LinkedIn profile, but you may as well try something new in your organization. It’s the 21st century, after all.
  5. Blogging – Search engines love blogs (constantly updated content), your customers love blogs (if you’re really creating a relationship with them and not just breathing your own exhaust) and your search engine marketing effort loves blogs (new ways to explore the keywords prospects use to find you). Blogging is a lot of work. So is business. Remember?
  6. Twitter – Zen meets the Internet. Don’t try to control Twitter; just ride it as best you can. It’s its own best search engine, and you can find information, trends and opinions there as they arise.

Tell Your Story in Social Media Terms

Once you’ve decided on the channel(s) you want to approach, you’ll need content, because whatever you may do in social media, you need to tell your story eventually. Your marketing communication writers need to get your message out consistently and to a variety of audiences.

You cannot fill your Social Media channels with brochure copy. Nobody on the Web cares about you, your company or your products; they care about what you can do for them and their problems.

When you hire a writer for social media in business, you need to start and maintain a conversation in a new language, and not just re-hash your strengths. Your Web content writer needs to understand your message and tailor it to as many different channels as you select.

What do you think about these social media business channels? Where and how are you casting your lot?

photo credit: avlxyz

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