Social Media Tools for Your Business: The Six Essentials
1. A blog of your own
The backbone of the social web is RSS feeds. A blog is an RSS feed, and you want your blog to be published on the social web. Publishing a blog allows you to benefit from exposure to the many RSS feed directories your blog distributes without having to republish one at a time.
But simply starting a blog is not enough. Optimization is key to keeping your blog on the radar. Update regularly with cool new jobs and integrate your RSS feed with your other social media tools.
WordPress.com, Blogger, and Typepad all offer free or nearly free RSS feeds. You can also install one on your site from WordPress.org.
2. Get a presence on Facebook
Most people don’t know that there are two Facebook options: a Facebook Profile and a Facebook Page.
The Facebook profile is for a key representative of the company, not the company itself.
Be sure to optimize your Facebook profile by carefully filling it with content that contains key terms relevant to you and your business. Integrate your blog and other social tools by importing them into your Facebook feed.
The Facebook page is for your business, whether it’s a service or product, a local business, or as an artist/musician/writer.
Your Facebook page may be the only chance you have to attract potential customers. Here are some Facebook apps you can add to your Page to accomplish this:
- social feeds import RSS feeds or blog posts
- My Flickr import images from a Flickr account
- youtube box allows you to add video clips to your Facebook page
- shop tab it’s a great app for selling products, although there is a small monthly fee
- static FBML allows you to place HTML code on your page
- Causes is a great way to accept donations for a non-profit company
3. Are you from LinkedIn?
LinkedIn is a professional networking site. It is an essential tool for business, especially if you do B2B.
Your LinkedIn profile can be someone’s first impression of your business, so be sure to optimize it. Complete each section of your profile using edited content and key terms.
Add apps that enhance your profile, especially the BlogLink app that imports your blog posts. Join LinkedIn groups relevant to your business.
4. Yes, Twitter
Twitter is a microblogging tool, limited to 140 characters per entry, which is nevertheless a great social networking tool that allows users to interact in “real time”. While Twitter is a great way to get the word out about events, products, and services, you want to use it in addition to your blog, not instead of it.
Keep your tweets fresh and frequent. TweetDeck or HootSuite help with this. These tools allow you to postpone the date of your tweets so that you can enter many tweets with a single session. HootSuite also has an option for you to import your blog posts as tweets.
Use Twitter lists to manage all the people you follow.
5. A Flickr account for your photos
Flickr is a media community used to upload and share photos and other images. This tool is underrated as you can get excellent exposure and better search engine placement if you use it with your search criteria in mind.
When you add an image to Flickr, be sure to rename the file with a few key terms relevant to the image and your business. Include those same key terms as tags and within the image description.
Integrate your Flickr account with other social tools and add them as galleries to your website or blog.
6. Focus on one YouTube account
Ah, the power of viral video is indisputable. If your company makes videos of any kind, get them on YouTube. Even if you don’t make videos, you can still benefit from the popularity of YouTube by creating playlists and commenting on other videos.
Whether it’s your own video clips or a playlist, import them to your other social sites or embed a video gallery on your website or blog.
Use the same naming strategy as for images: use your key terms in the file names, tags, and descriptions of the clips you add to these communities.
Here’s a presentation on how to create a realistic initial social media strategy for your business.
Regardless of the tools you choose to implement, remember that the social web is about interaction. Join and start conversations whenever you can.
Here is your success on the Social Network!