Recently I did a presentation for a group of business people at the Urbandale Chamber of Commerce. I was talking about using Twitter for Business. How it works, how to use it and why it's such an important part of following consumer trends. You do use it for business...right?
That discussion always leads into using other social media/marketing tools like Facebook and, what we think is critical for business, the Business Blog. (You do have one...right?) Now, with all heads swirling, comes the question: "I'm busy. How much time should I devote to social media/marketing?" The answer is easy:
"Enough to make it work for you."
That's the easy answer. But, if you are looking for something more concrete try this:
Budget thirty minutes four times a week for your business blog. This is the writing, downloading of images and doing outward bound links....all very important. The secret to this is your Social Media Plan (Here's a quick video from the road.) IF you already KNOW what you want to accomplish by engaging the public you don't have to "come up with something to write about". And, because you're keeping NOTES on ideas...everyday...this starts to get easy very quickly.
Budget about thirty minutes each day for Twitter. More if you are just starting out. Once your profile is complete (Critical!) and you've built a following you can employ the 80/20 Rule. 80% of your time is being social. Asking questions, communicating with folks who you find interesting, telling the world that you love coffee. Twitter is not only a fantastic news/learning/search tool it's also about the conversation. The other 20% can point folks to your blog, to your business or to articles that are important to your business...and your target consumer.
Pop in and out of Twitter several times a day to check messages directly to you or about you. Remember, Twitter is like the old AP/UPI Teletype we had in news rooms. It just keeps rolling along spitting out content every second. So, if you want to be in the content stream it's important to check in on a regular basis. And, now with the ability to do that from your mobile...it gets even easier. (Photo - Flicker/Marilin Gonzalo)