David Dandaneau is a Consultant at [SevenTimesSeven]. He specializes in helping business owners “manage their business and not their processes!” For more connect with him via Twitter @ddandaneau or any of the other social platforms you may find him on.
In this new era of “Social Media” a question that is often proposed amongst friends, business professionals, and entrepreneurs is what if anything social networks such as Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, LinkedIn, EmpireAvenue, FourSquare, etc do to enhance their lives and/or brand?
Well if telling you Facebook has now taken over as the third largest country and the other social media platforms are continuing to redefine communication isn’t enough… then just take a look at who in your past (personal and professionally) you have reconnected with, some of the revolutions and events (Middle East and Occupy WallStreet movements), and other things in this landscape are continuing to change the world we now live in. Let’s face it, some if not all of these events should clue anyone in on the power and impact that these platforms can have on you, your friends, and/or the brand you (they) represent. Now the question becomes should you wait until everyone else joins suit or embrace these new advancements now?
We concur on the latter and encourage all of our friends, followers, and readers to also embrace the new online Web environment in order to take opportunity of the things that you or your company might not once had the chance to. By using these new social media sites, you cannot only leave footprints of your legacy but you can also create a legacy for your company that once was only provided to privileged individuals and businesses. Granted we can all see that there are many footprints already created and there is a fierce amount of competition. However, the truth is social media is in its infant stages as media was when it started in the silent film era and if harnessed correctly now can produce phenomenal results for you and/or your business later (planting seeds). Needless to say, if you want to leave a footprint (again either personally or professionally) then you have to be able to stand out and choose the most important medians.
Now the question is… how do you choose the right social media to relay your message(s)? One thing is certain and that is just because the Facebook nation is a country of its own you need to do more than have a personal Facebook page, build a Fan Page, or post comments on sites that often do not help you promote yourself or leave appropriate footprints behind online. Okay, we agree you need a Facebook presence and post comments but those in their self is not the answer to all you personal or business legacies. What sites are important to your personal and company legacy are also sites such as Twitter, YouTube, FourSqaure, and Empire Avenue. Why? Well, it’s simple with the algorithms that search engines such as Googleand Bing use to help you get found by friends and businesses online, social media sites such as these use similar algorithms to help you and/or your business leave the footprints necessary to also be found or in other words… increase your search results. However, it is also important to remember that since social media is still in its infant stages, you should expect or anticipate interpreting the data more qualitatively versus quantitatively. There are a couple of reasons for this such as your willingness to invest in financial resources to help or your ability to use other software to find and connect with others you know or have known in the past. The one thing that is certain with almost all social media sites is that the more you communicate with others in these settings the more you can expect to have your message/messages relayed throughout other individual or business networks, hence increasing you or your businesses exposure. Despite the shortcomings or vagueness of social media one thing is certain with Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, LinkedIn, Empire Avenue, FourSqaure, etc and that is likes, friends, views, followers, connections, and investments in you or your company through these sites should provide you and/or your company with true quantitative results. That is if you or your business fan base increases you should benefit in some way financially, in increased exposure, or increased search ranking or even better… all of the above. Remember that in order to be found you have to provide information that in itself is easily found on multiple platforms, which social media sites can provide for you and/or your business.
In the end for those people and companies that choose to further monetize their social media networking, keep in mind that your keys to success will ultimately depend on your ability to analyze, interpret, and make decisions based off your qualitative data (posts) that your online network can provide you access to… not just what social media sites you belong to. We like to consider or look at this as a way that people regardless of their geography can work together to achieve more in this new era of social media communications or in the academic sense a mixed methods research analysis both quantitative and qualitative. Of course, we are a consulting company and work with our clients on all the social media sites mentioned in this paper and many more social media medians not mentioned (i.e. others will be discussed soon). Therefore, if you would like to have a personal conversation about how we can help you and/or your business understand this complex and dynamic operating environment, so you or your company can start leaving footprints, please feel free to send us an email or give us a call, as we would like to hear from you. Additionally, other opinions and posts are welcomed here, since understanding issues and finding solutions is a team effort. Until next time remember to keep smiling, networking, and creating connections that we all can benefit from in the days, weeks, months, and years ahead.