Social media has exploded. And it’s not just for your personal life. If you are in business you need to be online in business too.

A new survey from Nielsen showed that almost three quarters of Australian businesses are dedicating 10% of their budgets to social media marketing. That’s a lot of moola for big businesses. How about small business?

Are you committing both the dollars and time needed to make social media marketing work effectively for you?

Here are some tips to making it work for you:

Get social media savvy – get familiar with Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn. You can watch ‘How to use…’ videos and tutorials. It is easy to write these applications off but you don’t know what you don’t know. Some people are making money out of teaching you how to use these applications effectively. They make money because you do not spend the time to learn. So, spend the time to learn and in the long run you will save money. Applications like these update and add new features all the time and it seems pointless to outsource this. Get stuck in and comfortable with this high speed, ever changing social networking medium.

Still not convinced? Why should I be using it? – Why not?! Check out your competitors. See what they are doing. With social media you can get instant feedback from your audience. You can run polls for research or new products, you can offer 1hour sales discounts or promotional offers. Real time offers to real people with real measurable results.

I am not very good at self-promotion…Start getting comfy with saying ‘I am good at’ or if that is still to bold consider ‘our customers say…’. You do need to back up these claims with testimonials and Social media is fantastic for gaining fans, followers or likers. With the right process in place you can get feedback on your sales or ideas instantly. Not a prepaid envelope in sight!

It seems to take so much time! It does, it can, one thing I will say is it will get easier. You can integrate social media into your day or week. If you use a smart phone you can have access to these applications at your fingertips. There are even applications that enable you to update the applications all at the same time. Not that I want to confuse you!

Social media should not cost you anything but time really.  The more you deposit the more you can withdraw. You will see results all you need to do is get your head around it and then work out what your social media strategy is.

I do not train people how to use social media but I do help them understand how to use it to grow their business.

Give me a shout if you would like to know more.

In the meantime – check out this amazing video