The quick guide to using social media

As a relative newcomer to social media (last 3 months) I have been chasing the curve to try and understand how to use tools like twitter, linkedin, and facebook. I have used these tools for sometime for personal use but now are uncovering the fantastic potential as a business tool to enter the conversation with your customers, listen and learn and gather a lot of  IP really quickly. Here are my top learnings so far…

1. Twitter – I  largely now use this as a news service. Connect with key people that shape your industry and then follow their tweets to keep abreast with what is going on. Use tools like tweetdeck to capture the information in a useful interface. Tweeting is about sharing rather than promoting yourself. Yesterday I sent out a tweet that must have been sweet because I gained about 40 followers in 5 minutes. The tweet wasCheck out – new community for marketers and free training program #imu June 15-19 Shows you the power of the network!

2. Facebook – I use this to keep connected to friends and family. It does have some uses in that you can profile your business. Marie Smith the guru on facebook gives some good information on how to set up a fan-page which is useful.  Her tips about using your face as the image seems like a no brainer but to use the same image, bio and links in each social medium is a good tip.  Remember that your business contacts could look at this page and it exists forever!


3. Linkedin is a great business networking tool. I use this to stay connected to past contacts, ask questions, gather resources from like minded individuals. Joining some of the discussion groups in your industry is a good idea but the email trail can be a bit much. Just choose the groups that really mean something to your business. Otherwise tweet for instant updates.

4. Find sort cuts. You can on tweetdeck set up an autorespond tool that tweets out your messages to facebook automatically. Save your profile somewhere so when you fill in a new social forum you can cut and paste. Link all of your social profiles on your web, blog and email.


Anyone got any more learnings to add?


Good article in the  uk guardian re social media.


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