Milestones for Small Business are weekly answers to questions from small business owners across the world. At the end of a year, we’ll have a created a 52-point roadmap to small business success.
Milestone for Small Business #3
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Hey, what’s up? I’m Tim Miles, founder and head custodian of the Imagination Advisory Group with this week’s Milestone for Small Business.
At a recent seminar someone asked me “I’ve heard that if you are not on social media that you will be out of business in five years. What are your thoughts on this”
Extreme positions always make me skeptical.
They’re usually delivered by someone who has something financially to gain by putting that kind of fear in you.
But it does seem like you’re wasting a golden opportunity – if you use social media practically – if you use it the right way.
What I mean by that is to not attempt to use social media to replace traditional advertising.
You may have heard recently that both Pepsi Cola and General Motors canned eight figure advertising, social media advertising campaigns. Why? Well, I think it was because they tried to use social media as a megaphone to shout at people like you would use mass media.
Well, that’s a terrible way to try to use social media, which is a very interpersonal, intimate way of communicating with one another.
Rather, try using social media as a relationship deepener with your customers.
Try to use social media to grow bigger ears.
Set up Google Alerts to listen to for when your name is used, when your industry is used.
Do Twitter searches to find out what people are saying about your business category, your business and possibly even your competition.
Talk to people, engage with people about what matters to them when it comes to your discipline.
So, do I think that if you’re not using social media in the next five years that you’ll be out of business?
I think that’s only one factor.
It could be a leading factor to cause you problems and when the barrier for entry into the world of social media is so low and so cost effective, it just requires a little time and a little sacrifice and a little bit of education which is freely available throughout the internet.
I can’t see why you wouldn’t start tomorrow engaging with social media and deepening the relationship you have with your customers.
That’s this week’s Milestone for Small Business. I’m Tim Miles, thanks for joining us.
Have a successful week.
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