I am constantly approached from people from a huge range of industries, wanting to know how to use social networking better. I may be a burlesque agent foremost, but the principles of how I applied social networking to the growth of my business can be applied to most industries.
Recently, I’ve been in talks with a false eyelash company, a real estate agent, a stripper and an entertainment agency, to name a few. All wanting to reach their audience with a more interactive, personable touch. Wanting to engage more.
Using Social Networking, is obviously a good way to engage your audience. But if used incorrectly, it can also drive them away.
Whilst on the forefront, Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and MySpace can appear pretty much the same thing – giving people new ways to connect with your business and interact and talk to you, share pictures, links etc. But using a few all at once, or any of them really well, can seem like a lot of work.
There are many tools out there to assist you with “managing” your updates, saving you time, auto posting etc. I use and love Tweetdeck. I can write an update, and with a click of a button (on my Mac or iPhone), can send it live to Facebook (including specific pages), Twitter, LinkedIn and MySpace, clicking and unclicking which accounts I want to include. This is important as whilst a witty quote may be suitable for my personal Facebook page and Twitter, it may not be for LinkedIn. So whilst time saving, I think it’s important firstly, to work out which network is for what purpose, and once you have that figured, stick with it.
It’s a good idea to step back, and prioritise first. Think about your business and your audience. What are your audience on that site for? And how can YOU give them what they WANT?
In the beginning, I used to blast advertising everywhere. Copy and paste and paste and paste it. It took me a while to realise, but this is bloody annoying to most people. They’ll stop following you in a heartbeat. Specifically, when I first started using Twitter I was just hitting out random Tweets about events, news etc, until one night, I poured a glass of wine and for the first time ever started to really speak my mind. I was instantly flooded with comments about “it’s so nice to finally get to know you, the woman behind the burlesque”. The penny dropped.
Since that night, Twitter, has become almost like the film “Being John Malcovich”. It’s giving people a direct read of my thoughts, my twisted humour, my influences and passions. It gives people a rare insight into who Jac Bowie really is. They may quite often be “(t)witty ramblings” (ie my “Bridget Jones” moments, my video dedications, and live backstage images from the shows), but the readership is growing.
Facebook for me has also evolved. It’s still my main hub for event promotion, sharing links, recent press, promoting Artists. But I like to keep separate Pages for specific targeted followers.
So what for my clients? Well for the real estate client, he’s reached a point where he wants to make more professional connections (LinkedIn), but also wants to be more personable – without getting too personal! In this case I would also recommend a Facebook (Business Page not Personal Account). For the eyelash company, she’s about to launch, and she has a very glamorous and visual product. She should be working her Facebook Business Page with images, content about what makes her product unique, items on sale, glamourous images of women wearing her product. If she wants to create excitement and tease her audience, get Twitter cranking with some images of goodies being made in the workshop.
Whilst my love affair with MySpace has somewhat dwindled. I do have a soft spot for it, and may return and show my affection once again. After all, she was my first.