Here is a brief introduction of the social media sites that will begin answering some of the questions I received about social media marketing after I was quoted in several news articles about Facebook, Twitter and Linked In.
If you’ve considered using Facebook to promote your financial planning practice, or any business for that matter, check out Kristen Luke‘s article The Three Best Ways to Market Your Business Using Facebook. I was fortunate to be quoted in her most recent article which is about which type of Facebook profile you should create.
Let me begin by addressing the many who may be reluctant to try social media.
My introduction to social networking began a few years ago when I returned to college for a graduate program. Within the first few weeks I received several “Friend Invites” to Facebook from classmates.
I declined all of them thinking that I was an “adult” and too mature to participate in college frat party games with my younger classmates. Eventually I caved in, and now years later, most of my business comes directly or indirectly through social media web sites.
In the article’s title I alluded to business and income growth through online networking, however, to be successful, that shouldn’t be the obvious reason you participate in these sites. Just like in-person networking, if your only reason for connecting with others is to increase your business, you’re not likely to be successful.
Online networking is no different than any type of networking except that you can meet and get to know a larger group of people in a shorter amount of time.
So what does work when networking online? Join the big sites, connect with a few friends, and observe how people interact because each site has a unique culture. Once you feel comfortable you can interact with others and share as much or as little about your life as you’re comfortable. Eventually, you’ll really enjoy the many new friendships you make and maybe even some new business along the way.
So where do you start?
I’d begin joining Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. Each is unique and has a different purpose.
LinkedIn seems to attract corporate employees and professional business owners. There is less interaction on this site but it’s a great tool for finding other professionals or service providers. You can connect with me on Linked In at http://www.linkedin.com/in/chuckrylant.
Twitter is unique in that you can only exchange micro posts that are limited to only 140 characters. This seems odd at first, but the more you use it the more you’ll appreciate its simplicity. The people on this site range from all walks of life from teenagers to the President of the United States. Find me at http://twitter.com/ChuckRylant.
My favorite site is Facebook because of its vast ways to connect and share with others. This site allows you to share micro posts, but also post web links, photos and videos. Just like Twitter, you’ll find many different people on Facebook. My Facebook address is http://www.facebook.com/chuckjrylant.
These sites do take time, but I’m confident you’ll find it time well spent. So begin by creating a profile at each site and connect with people and learn how the platforms work. Then when you get more comfortable you can start learning how to promote your services.
I hope to hear from you at each of these sites so we can get to know each other better. Just send me an invite and mention where you found me and I’ll gladly accept.