Many businesses and individuals seeking work are using social media to display their wares. It serves as a good resume and a chronological log of your on the job training. At some point in the future visitors will be able to see how you have grown in your field.
“Build it and they will come…” – NOT
When Ray Kinsella hears those words in Field Of Dreams you realize you are in a fairytale. It fascinates me how many people believe that’s all they have to do with their Internet tools. Once you’ve created your social media assets, you’ve got to let your target markets know about them. And you’ve got to give them a reason to come. Going viral would be nice, but let’s bring things down to reality.
Build it so they will come back
Your primary mission in creating your social media tools it to create content that will make the people who view it want to come back and view it again. To do this you’ve got to offer something of value. Often that item is free advice. One way to do this is to show your visitors how they can use your expertise and save some money by NOT hiring you. This is the kind of service friends tell friends about.
Sound crazy? It’s not. Yes, your free advice will go to benefit that free loader, but is that the customer you really wanted? No! He’s the one that knows more about your field than you do (well, he thinks he does). One thing that free loader will likely do is tell others about your free wares. And occasionally one of those “others” will be the customer you want. And that is the customer who takes a look at the work to be done and then realizes that you would do the job quicker and better than he would.
Get them to come the first time
Now that you have your blogs, Facebook, Twitter and other social media tools up and operating, you’ve got to get people to pay their first visits. How are you going to do that? Take a careful look at the promotion resources you already have in place. How can you “link” your social media to those items. Is your blog address on your calling card? Is it mentioned on all of your audio ads? It it posted in all of your print ads? Do you offer a Facebook invitation from your website? Are your blogs listed in you email signatures? And so on…
After you have incorporated your existing promotional tools, find other sources that will get people to make that first visit. Paid per click ads on Facebook, Google and other media are cheap and can focus on narrow target parameters. Get vendors, customers and other industry associates to link their media to yours where it is appropriate.
Friends, links and followers become leads
Once you’ve built a following, you’ve built a list of leads. You know a little about them and they know even more about you. Now go ask what you can do for them.