3 Social Networking Tips for Equine Business Owners

In preparation for the upcoming Placer Equine Business forum, I’d like to share some tips on how equine business owners can get started with and begin using social networking to help connect with others and grow their business.

To begin with, it’s important to realize that businesses all over the country have embraced and are now using social networks like Facebook as a low cost way to engage current customers and find new ones.

A few interesting facts…

Over 2 million local businesses have now setup Facebook business (fan) pages to connect with their customers there.

Over 70 percent of small and medium businesses are using social media such as blogs, Facebook, Twitter and YouTube to connect with their customers {May 2010 – eWeek}

Tips:

1.  Know who you want to engage

Many businesses make the mistake of not thinking through who it is they should be attracting and engaging online. They could end up becoming easily distracted and frustrated. The more you understand exactly who you should be engaging, the more significant the outcome of your efforts will be.

There are lots of tools to help you discover who’s worth following on sites like Twitter including:

2. Listen and respond

Most people worry about what they want to say on Facebook and Twitter.

Perhaps the easiest way to engage people on social networks is to listen first. Simply listen and respond to the conversations you want to be a part of. Be on the look out for ways to connect with what they are saying. Look for and bring attention to points of connection and common interests listed in their profile.

After a while, you’ll warm up to the idea of reaching out to new and existing customers with something important to ask or say that would be valuable to share.

3.  Promote yourself by helping others

Most businesses today approach social media and social networking the way they’ve approached and treated traditional marketing and advertising – as a one way channel to promote themselves and themselves only {or spam}. The ones who are most successful look for ways to help others, even if it has nothing to do with their business and what they are selling.

In the new world of marketing, you must find a way to create and provide value beyond your own self-interest.  Helping others and staying involved in their day and week online increases their connection with and awareness of you. However, prevent being perceived as a “Facebook or Twitter stalker” by being mindful of the number of interactions with people and not over investing yourself in any one person.

Helping is without a doubt the best way to make new friends and sustain existing friendships. Eventually, those friendships will bring value back to you and your business as a result of the goodwill you extended.

Written by Josh Unfried

Josh Unfried

Placer Equine Business Forum: Wednesday, October 27, 2010 from 5:30 PM – 8:00 PM (PT)

For more tips and strategies on how to leverage social networking to grow your business make sure to register for the FREE Placer County Equine Business Forum event.

This entry was posted in Events, Marketing, Social Media. Bookmark the permalink.

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