social media in business
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Social Media Consultant

Chris Hambly's picture
Submitted by Chris Hambly on 12 May 2010 - 12:29pm

There are millions of people online every hour of every day. As a business owner you practically have a captive audience if you could just reach your core customer base. You could spend hours every day blogging, tweeting, following, unfollowing, and updating your status on Facebook but when would you have time to run your business? The other question is how can you be sure that you are reaching your customers? Going viral doesn’t just happen. It takes considerable planning.

This use of social media for business promotion has now spawned a growing need for experts under the moniker of social media consultants. This person should not just be internet savvy but able to spot trends, monitor analytics and statistics, as well as maintain blogs and build online communities. A SMC on the professional level should have a portfolio that demonstrates corporate experience. In other words they should be able to do more than just start your blog and park a commercial on Youtube.
Consider social media an extension of your public relations arm. As the client examine your short list of objectives. Do you want to increase site traffic and boost revenue? Do you want to create buzz about coming products? Do you want to tackle customer service related issues? After familiarizing themselves with your company’s product or service and target customer, the SMC should be able to create a plan to address these goals tailored to your needs. The plan should also include a methodology to measure results and calculations of ROI. If they are unable to provide this information move on to the next possible consultant.
As the use of social media expands and evolves there will also be specialization. Companies will want to seek out consultants who are educated about their particular industry. Having a social media strategy could soon be considered as important as having a strong business plan, so choose your consultant wisely.
Suggested reading:
The New Rules of Marketing and PR: How to Use Social Media, Blogs, News Releases, Online Video, and Viral Marketing to Reach Buyers Directly by David Meerman Scott, £8.38
This is Social Media: Tweet, Blog, Link and Post Your Way to Business Success by Guy Clapperton, £7.76

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