by Winnie Hsiu
Who would have thought back in the 1980s when the internet was beginning to really take form that it would one day change the way that people communicate, shop, conduct business, interact with each other, watch television, and so much more. One estimate derived back in 2009 had one quarter of the world’s population wired for the internet. Chances are that number has grown even larger over the last two years.
One of the many ways in which the internet has changed the world has been through the creation of social media. Things like MySpace and Facebook were initially created to give people a way to connect with friends and other people no matter where they were in the world. Social media now includes things like Twitter, StumbleUpon, Digg, Bebo, Yammer, Diospora, and so much more.
Since so much of the world is on the internet, businesses have gotten smart and taken to using social media as a way of reaching out to customers, both new and old. Businesses like the self storage industry now run entire promotions and marketing campaigns strictly through social media channels.
However, as with anything, there are certain pitfalls that come with using social media to market your business.
One of the biggest problems that companies like Life Storage in Chicago has had is in finding and connecting with current or past customers that will help promote things like the video contest they held in 2010 that gave the winner free storage for a year.
Most social media sites will allow you to find your “friends” through a basic email search. If you have been collecting email addresses of your tenants, past and present, all you need to do is connest your email database to Facebook or whatever mode your using and it will actually do all the hard work for you.
Getting started is not the hardest part of using social media though. The real trick is in keeping up with it, especially when you run promotions that cross into multiple different modes of social media like Storitz, a self storage directory provider, did when they ran a promotion inspired from the Julia Robert’s movie “Eat, Pray, Love.”
Through the promotion they were encouraging users to post their own stories similar to the one Robert’s lives in the movie via Facebook and Twitter. They also had a video of their own as a parody of the movie on YouTube to inspire users.
Keeping up with so many different mediums can be difficult and time consuming. That is why social media management platforms like HootSuite, TweetDeck or Seesmic exist, so that you can maximize your time and earning potential through social media.
Social media is an exciting an fast growing segment in the business world. Whether you’re a self storage company, the local drug store, or just a consumer, if you don’t get on board the social media train you’re going to find yourself left in the past.
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