Many people have been involved with social media for a while now. However, there are others who are just beginning to use it and to understand its amazing potential to help them achieve extreme success professionally and personally.
Of course, your perspective will be very different if you already have a lot of experience with social media than if you don’t have a lot of knowledge about what you can do with it and how much it can help you to become a raging success. If you are a person who got involved with social media a while ago, you can see that the social media of today and all of the tools and tricks that you can use for your business is much more sophisticated than it ever was before.
As a newcomer to social media, there are several basic principles that you should keep in mind and that will undoubtedly serve you very well along the road to business success through social media. Of course, you need to pick a beginning point and work from there.
Choose to follow exciting people: Everyone, especially when you are just starting out in a particular discipline, needs someone with more knowledge and experience, from whom they can learn. You need to identify a person who has knowledge in an area within social media and build a relationship with that person so that they can impart their knowledge to you. A wonderful and extremely effective way to begin to gain that knowledge is by asking questions. You should always keep in mind that you will return the favor (in some way) at some point in the future.
Be who you are: Social media interaction is a social activity. Other people are interested in who you are as a person and what you believe in a stand for. You should always be willing and able to jump into the discussions and be an important part of the interactions. You need to show other people who you truly are. You will see that positive results will come your way.
Show modesty: If you are a newcomer to social media, that means that you are trying to carve a place for yourself within the social media communities of your choosing. Even if you feel that you have a great deal of knowledge and expertise on a given topic, it is wise not to show it in the beginning. People may resent you if you do and before you can be at a comfortable place when it comes to sharing your knowledge, you need to establish relationships with people that have a solid foundation that won’t be damaged by ego.
Choose your niche: Before you begin any interactions with people on various social media channels, you need to choose the social media channels (and communities) that will serve you the most effectively. You need to make sure to have a social media strategy in place before you do anything else and part of that strategy means that you need to identify your target audience and your particular niche.
Stay on the good side of other people: Your first objective when it comes to social media interaction is to figure out how you can help other people. Always remember that your driving principle should be WIIFM (What’s In It for Me?). In other words, it can’t ever be about how wonderful and exciting you and your business are. It must always be about what you can do to solve the other person’s problems. If you can manage to do that, your relationships will prove to be invaluable.
Metrics are not the be all and end all: Admittedly, the numbers are extremely important when it comes to social media. However, they are not everything. If you have 5,000 followers and you only interact with 20 of them, what good is the number to you? It is better (and more sensible) to go for quality over quantity. Also, remember that your social media connections are not set in stone. If you find that certain individuals are not working out, it is perfectly appropriate for you to eliminate them and replace them with other people with whom you have a better and more productive connection. When it comes to your interactions, remember that you should always strive to offer the highest-quality content, which will give value to the other people.
Always be fair: If you share someone else’s content, make sure that you always give attribution to that person. That is what you would want other people to do and it is right and fair for you to do the same thing.
Follow others in the way they follow you: That is the right thing to do. Your relationships cannot be one sided or else they are not true relationships.
Interact for the appropriate amount of time: It is very easy to become addicted to social media interactions; however, it is important that you don’t give up your life for it. Having a life balance is healthy and it is necessary. It will also make your social media interactions more effective and more successful.
This is a very exciting time to be getting involved with social media. You need to make sure that you really understand the dynamics social media entails and work accordingly. You have the benefit of a great number of effective and exciting tools that were not available in the past and that will only help you to have a more successful and exciting business. You should take advantage of all that social media has to offer and continue to grow and learn along the way.
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Michael Cohn is the founder and Chief Technology Officer (CTO) of CompuKol Communications LLC. He has over 25 years of experience in IT and web technologies.
Mr. Cohn founded CompuKol Communications to help small businesses and entrepreneurs increase their exposure and reputation on the Internet. CompuKol consults, creates, and implements communication strategies for small businesses to monopolize their markets with a unique business voice, vision, and visibility.
Prior to that, Mr. Cohn spent a significant amount of time at a major telecommunications company, where his main focus was on initiating and leading synergy efforts across all business units by dramatically improving efficiency, online collaboration, and the company’s Intranet capabilities, which accelerated gains in business productivity. His expertise includes social media marketing strategies; internet marketing; web presence design; business analysis; project management; management of global cross-matrix teams; systems engineering and analysis, architecture, prototyping and integration; technology evaluation and assessment; systems development; performance evaluation; and management of off-shore development.
Mr. Cohn earned a Master’s degree in project management from George Washington University in Washington, DC; and a Master’s degree in computer science and a Bachelor of Science degree in electrical engineering from Fairleigh Dickinson University in Teaneck, NJ.
Mr. Cohn is a member of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE).