Back to Basics – Small Business MUST Adopt Social Media Marketing – Part 1 of 2

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    Simple Steps will Integrate Social Media into Your Traditional Marketing Plan

    As a marketing and small business consultant (www.LisaChapman.com and social media consultant (www.iBrandMasters.com), I am continually astounded at how SLOW small business managers really are in understanding, budgeting, and integrating online marketing into their traditional marketing plans. Lots of lip service, very little action.

    I realize that this is old news, but if this post motivates even a just handful of small businesses to actually START their trek into online marketing, I will be thrilled.

    For those of you who have already started – congratulations, and please read this in the spirit of checking yourself. Have you covered the basics?

    Why is Social Media Marketing Important?

    Traditional marketing has changed and will never be the same.

    • Technology allows consumers to mute or skip TV commercials – and they do.
    • Newspaper and all print circulation is dying. Ads do not get our attention.
    • One-way “push” messaging is now viewed as offensive and hype-ish. Bad for the brand.
    • Consumers are overwhelmingly ‘over-messaged’. We are all OVERLOADED.
    • Consumers do not trust traditional marketers anymore.

    Consumers Demand More Attention

    Online, consumers have a voice. If a company’s product or service doesn’t match their marketing claims, WATCH OUT! Disgruntled and disenchanted consumers now have the power to publish all of their harsh and unedited opinions – anytime they want to! Once published online, those messages are likely permanent, and business has no control over the backlash.

    Consumers want and demand that:

    • Their voice be heard and ACKNOWLEDGED.
    • Companies be accountable for mismatched promises and actions.
    • Their peers be involved in the most powerful ‘word-of-mouth’ ever.

    Business Can Take Action and Benefit Enormously

    Think of it like this: social networks are actually a democratic form of business! Customers vote with their opinions. Business has a gigantic opportunity to directly impact their customers online, engage them, and develop a real relationship of TRUST that will be stronger and longer-lived.

    Businesses of all sizes MUST adopt and USE a social networking and social media marketing strategies NOW – or risk being left in the dust.

    In the next post, we will cover the basic steps every business must incorporate to get started right.

    In the meantime, consider reading these. It’s easy – click here to purchase:

    How has social media marketing benefited your company?

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    For more resources, see our Library topics Marketing and Social Networking.

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    ABOUT Lisa M. Chapman:

    Ms. Chapman’s new book, How to Make Money Online With Social Media: A Step-by-Step Guide for Entrepreneurs will be available in bookstores and online in January 2011. With offices in Nashville Tennessee, but working virtually with international clients, Lisa M. Chapman serves her clients as a business and marketing coach, business planning consultant and social media consultant. As a Founder of iBrand Masters, a social media consulting firm, Lisa Chapman helps clients to establish and enhance their online brand, attract their target market, engage them in meaningful social media conversations, and convert online traffic into revenues. Email: Lisa @ LisaChapman.com