Friday, 1 July 2011

June Newsletter

This is the first edition of our newsletter, future editions will look quite different and full articles will be available on instead of here on the blog. Each month I will post a copy of the email newsletter on the blog for you to view, but it won't have the full articles in just links to our website where they will be available to read in full (it will make more sense once we're up and running...I hope!)

For those involved in our newsletter, a copy has been sent out to our email subscribers and copies (a slightly different version/layout) will also be printed and distrubted or sent out.

Jill. x

So You Think You Understand Social Media…
Or Do You??
Article written by Naomi Johnson

Social media is big news – in fact massive news. It’s like the early days of the boom in internet use around 1995-97, only more so. Back then, any business that didn’t get their website up and running was considered old-fashioned and would certainly have been left behind when it came to promoting themselves.

Nowadays, businesses really need to get to grips with social media or risk getting left behind for a second time. But lots of businesses don’t really know what to do, or they simply do nothing. More importantly, they probably don’t have time to “do” social media properly because there’s a lot more to it than simply putting out a few status updates and tweets each day on Facebook and Twitter!

So, what exactly do we mean by social media??

Social media is a new way to use the web – it’s a 2 way conversation if you like – involving both listening and talking. If you thought Facebook and Twitter were just for teenagers, think again!

Any business that sells a product or service can be absolutely certain that a good proportion of their customers are chatting about them on Facebook and Twitter right now – today. And these businesses need to know what their customers are saying – they need to be able to respond to both positive and negative comments - to be able to engage their current customers and develop strategies to gain new ones. It’s all about building a community around your customers – absolutely NOT about trying to sell your product or service in every status update or tweet. Nothing is guaranteed to drive away potential customers quicker than that! Yet that’s exactly what I see so many businesses doing on social media platforms, day after day.

Facebook has over 600 million users worldwide - around 30 million in the UK alone. Twitter is catching up. People watch over 2 billion YouTube videos each day (you did know YouTube was a social media platform, didn’t you?) If Facebook was a country it’d be the 3rd largest in the world. These statistics are nothing short of phenomenal. And a new one I just read: 150 years of video are watched each year on Facebook…….

Your business needs to take note of these facts, I think you’d agree?

Social media is also important for SEO (search engine optimization) - Google now recognizes tweets in their organic results (that’s the non-paid for section below the featured sites at the top of the search page). It also recognizes Facebook profiles and fan pages. The bottom line is that Google loves fresh content, so tweets and Facebook status updates are ideal for SEO. And I haven’t even mentioned blogs yet - does your business have a blog, and is it regularly updated with interesting posts, optimized for SEO?

The take-home message here is that social media is changing the way the world does business - this is happening right now, in your town, this week, today. It’s vital to get involved, and one huge bonus is that social media can benefit small businesses just as much as large multi-nationals – possibly even more so. It’s also vital to do things properly, or miss out – the window of opportunity won’t remain open indefinitely – just as with the internet boom of the late 90s. You wouldn’t find a business nowadays without a computer or a website……

To coin a phrase, you’ve got to be in it to win it!

Article written by Naomi Johnson

I provide a range of social media solutions for small businesses, from a basic overview and audit to a complete “done-for-you” service, covering several networks of your choice. It's vitally important for businesses nowadays to be visible on platforms such as Facebook and Twitter; LinkedIn offers an excellent means of professional networking and support, and YouTube provides an easy solution for viral sharing of videos (it’s not just for music!). Oh and you must have heard of Foursquare, the "new kid on the block"?? I'm really excited to be part of the amazing, vibrant opportunity currently offered by social media – I enjoy meeting people and it will give me a real buzz to be able to help businesses build their client base and reputation through this revolutionary method of networking.

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