I've been a devoted Facebook member since the first year it made its way out of Harvard and into most college campuses. I had a MySpace back when you could only have eight top friends. I regularly post content to Twitter, YouTube and PhotoBucket. I write my own blog in addition to writing for IconLogic's blog. Somewhere along the line I'd convinced myself that I was a social networking whiz. A genius, even.
Last week I attended Mary Gillen's two-day, online Social Media Marketing class. I now realize how unsubstantiated my networking arrogance really was. The angles I had not even considered, the tips I had no clue about, the resources I'd never even heard of were staggering.
I've come to realize that if I thought I knew a lot about social networking for business before Mary's class, it must be incredibly daunting to someone who knows, right off the bat, that they're not up to speed. The good news is that Mary's course really put the pieces together for me.
Here's a bit of what I learned about social media marketing:
- Companies should have Facebook pages, but since it's the Facebook fan pages that are indexed and updated in real-time by Google, it is preferable to make a fan page for your business rather than a profile.
- You should post 3-5 tweets on Twitter a day to keep your brand relevant. Avoid posting all of these tweets at the same time by using an application like HootSuite that will send out your tweets on a schedule.
- If you are posting to multiple video sharing sites, like YouTube and Blip.tv (and you should be), post different videos on each or run the risk of appearing as a spammer in Google's search filters.
- When naming images on your site, include your name or the name of your company with dashes to improve Search Engine Optimization. For instance, the image at the beginning of this article was named iconlogic-puzzle-piece.jpg.
- Post thoughtful comments to other people's blog at least three times a week with a link back to your site or blog.
That's really just the tip of this enormous social media marketing iceberg. If you find you need a little help putting the pieces together, I highly recommend you sign up for Mary's next class.
Exclusive Offer: If you do decide to take Mary's class, here's an offer for readers of this BLOG. Use coupon code SMMICON10 and you'll save 10% off the price of the class.
About the author: AJ George, a cum laude graduate of Towson University, is IconLogic's lead Technical Writer and author of the book "PowerPoint 2007: The Essentials" and the just-released "PowerPoint 2008 for the Macintosh: The Essentials." You can follow AJ on Twitter at http://twitter.com/andrayajgeorge.