For business owners hoping to cash in on social media, consistency is the key. “Think of a leaky kitchen faucet that drips slowly and consistently,” says Jamila White, the E-Commerce Diva. “It’s so powerful that over time it can wear through porcelain.” White offers four tips to keep in mind in making social media mean something for your business:
Have a goal. Too many entrepreneurs start social networking without knowing what action they want people to take once they come in contact with them, says White. Social media can sell products, spark media exposure, or give a business owner credibility as an expert — different goals that would require different strategies, White says.
Create relevant content. Once you know your audience, develop content that fulfills their needs. Carter’s goal was to familiarize moms with her brand and products, so her tips made their lives easier and gave them an incentive to visit her site.
Measure your results. Keep track of whether people visit your blog, respond to your Twitter posts, or buy your products. Services such as Google Analytics and StatCounter let you track your Web traffic, while services such as Bitly let you see how many people read the links you post.
Adjust your expectations. “Too many people think ‘I need to get 5,000 followers on Twitter so I can sell these 5,000 books,’ ” says White. But social networking is more about building relationships over time. “When people play golf, the relationships they create on the course often later turn into business. Social media’s the new golf course.”