I keep seeing these long lists everywhere on how to use social media for business purposes and although a lot of them touch on some important factors, they are usually too complicated so I’m breakin’ it down for you.  It doesn’t matter if your company is B2B, B2C, or A2Z, online marketing programs all have the same four elements.


This element seems to be lost in most social media campaigns.  Without research, how do you know where your customers and prospects are playing online?  Are they on Facebook?  Are they on LinkedIn?  Once you find them, dig deeper and find out what they do on the social platforms.  Are they participating, looking for leads themselves, or not active at all?

Besides finding your customers, research what your competitors are doing.  Do they have a blog?  Do they have a community? Do they make use of videos, podcasts, or photos? If so, are the people engaging with them potential clients for you?


This is where your research comes into play.  If you found your customers and prospects are already participating on Twitter, build a profile; one for your company, yourself, and other key players at your business.  This is where it gets tricky.  Just because your competitors are doing something doesn’t mean you need to do that as well.  Make sure whatever you decide to embark on (a blog, a virtual community, Facebook pages) that you are offering something unique and that you have the time to devote to it. It’s worse to create a profile and not participate in conversation than to not have one at all.


Most people begin online marketing campaigns and expect thousands of followers and incoming calls right off the bat.  I’m here to tell you it’s about quality, not quantity.  Make sure you get to know your followers and make sure your efforts are attracting the type of audience that drive your business goals.

This takes time, just like a relationship, so be patient, network, listen, and build.


This is my favorite part and this is where you cultivate and nurture your leads.  It’s about conversatin’, commenting, and companionship.  Make your followers feel at home.  If they are comfortable enough to comment with you the loyalty is already getting stronger.

What tips do you have for online marketing success?

*Image courtest of Marketing Services Online