I’ve been brushing up on marketing and PR stuff recently for the business, and was quite surprised at how internet and social media savvy businesses now need to be.
With UK consumers apparently spending up to £200 million a month (yes, a MONTH!) online, having a web presence is so important.
Having your own website to sell or promote your products and services is almost a given these days. Then there’s Facebook business pages and groups, Twitter, LinkedIn, and the plethora of blog, forums and review sites. The list is seemingly endless.
I was fairly quick to jump on the Facebook bandwagon for my own personal page, but have only recently discovered the groups function, and even more recently, the business section.
I’ve also (as you know) recently began blogging. There are a number of ways to use a blog, from personal ones, blogs to promote your expertise and services, through to blogs that generate market research data for business ideas. They really can be as simple or as complex as you want (or have the time for!). Online forums are also big news, and becoming a regular on one relating to your chosen area (e.g. parenting forums, business forums, crafting forums) can be a good way to network and find invaluable advice.
All good so far. Now, I don’t consider myself a complete Luddite, but neither Mr N nor I can understand the point of Twitter, yet all the social media business advice is to get on there, and network like crazy, Tweeting every day, several times a day if possible. If only I had a clone of myself to do this! Even with my BlackBerry, which I have to say, is invaluable– I’ve had it for a month and Mr N reckons it’ll need to be surgically removed from my hand with the amount of time I spend on it, between checking emails, updating my blog and website, I honestly don’t know where I’ll find the time to Tweet or update my Facebook pages.
I’ve also heard of a new phenomenon of Mummy Bloggers, who review products and services (and can even ‘guest’ write or ‘ghost’ write for your blog), and are fast becoming as influential as traditional media in their opinions and advice. One had such a following that she was invited to Disney World to blog about them!
At the moment, I feel quite excited about all these new avenues, but also increasingly befuddled (if that is such a word) at where to start.
I think what I’ll do is sit down with a nice latte, and write a plan of attack, and find out how best to use these social media outlets. I’ll keep you posted. And if I get any invites to Disney World (or even just a couple of free cups of Costa coffee for mentioning them) then I’ll be more than happy!