Which Social Media Sites Should I be on?

In the age of social media, more and more social networking sites are popping up each day, and businesses have the daunting task of choosing which websites to establish a presence on.  However, signing up for every social media site is a big mistake that many companies are making – no matter how many social media specialists you have, there’s no way that every site can be constantly updated and monitored.  So how does your business choose?

You need a plan when approaching social media – don’t just dive into social media.  Social media doesn’t have to be a time or money zapper, but your business does need preparation.  Your social media sites should be thoroughly personalized, and customers should be able to see that there’s a face behind the brand name.  Your brand pages have to be updated constantly (whether manually or with a media management platform), and social media also takes training.  There is some time that has to be invested into making sure everyone who’s on the social media team is aligned with the company’s social media goals, so which networking site to get involved in takes some serious consideration.

Ask yourself what that certain platform will do for your brand.  Are you a B2C looking for ways to reach out to potential and current customers?  Are you a B2B looking to network with other business professionals?  Your social media platform has to reach your target audience effectively, so you can keep up with current industry news and what customers are asking for in real time.

We’ll leave you with this very insightful infographic from Mashable from the company CMO – it’s a very clear explanation of what the major social networks are good for, and also what qualities they lack.

[Photo courtesy of Flickr: Chris Lott]

Nonprofit Organizations and Social Media

Nonprofit organizations can benefit tremendously from social media.  It's a simple way for you to to gather followers and friends who have the same goal and mission.  Here are our steps to create a social media campaign for your company:

  • Know your audience - Interact with the group of people with your common vision.  Find out who shows an interest in your cause by using a social media management platform's listening tool and find out who's using keywords that pertain to your nonprofit or mission.  Introduce yourself (always make a good first impression) and show them that you have a common goal - your target audience can help spread the word about the cause and create buzz in their own networks of friends and acquaintances.
  • Make your mission statement clear - This is a MUST for all nonprofits!  No one will donate or volunteer for a cause they don't have that much information about.  We've all heard about donation schemes that turn out to be scams - you're not one of them!  Make sure your cause and mission statement are searchable and present in all of your organization's pages.
  • Show some action - To prove that your nonprofit isn't a scam, post media and articles about how you're changing your world.  Post videos volunteers, success stories, pictures of benefactors - potential volunteers want to see what the job consists of and who they'll be helping, and media can help emotionally engage people to get involved.  It can also help people relate to the problem and actually uncover a problem that needs to be solved in their community and in the world.
  • Thank your sponsors - "Please" and "Thank-you" are the magic words - I can't remember how many times I was told this when growing up.  A small thank you can make someone feel very special.  Thank your sponsors, volunteers, donators publicly - it's a simple way to say you're appreciative, and a simple way to put a smile on someone's face.
  • Make information accessible - If people want to find out more about the company, or how they can lend a hand, give them the information.  Volunteers are already devoting time to helping out - don't make them spend more time looking for all the logistics.  Make information easy to find on your company's website and fan pages.  Also, make it easy to donate to the cause - many nonprofits have already enlisted the text to give mobile option, and some have even included a donation button on their sites.

I personally believe there are so many great nonprofit organizations out there that need more social media coverage to shed some light on a great cause.  Everyone has the opportunity to change their communities, cities, and even the world.  Social media gives nonprofits the opportunity of connecting volunteers with a cause.

[Photo Courtesy of Office Clipart]

What Does Social Media mean to a Budding Entrepreneur?

Remember our interview with one of Social Defender’s interns?  As we sent this summer intern back to school, she told us about her experience with social media from a business perspective.  Well, we thought it was very insightful and representative of what many companies who embark on the social media adventure believe.  Here are her words of wisdom:

“Social media is like an uninhabited, mysterious island – like the ones you always watch in movies and tv shows.  There’s something about it that’s so alluring and intriguing, yet there’s always danger.  This danger is always there, but once you have the skills and knowledge, it isn’t as threatening as it seems.  The beauty of a mysterious island always outweighs the dangers.  Social media is just like that – it can be so helpful and contribute greatly to a company’s success, yet sometimes social media slips can endanger a company’s reputation.  However, that should not prevent companies from enlisting social media as part of their customer relations efforts.  As I’ve worked with Social Defender, I have become more aware of just how much impact social media gives for a company, and this knowledge is crucial for many new entrepreneurs that are my age.  Social media is very promising, and learning how to manage it will be a key to success for any company.”

Put Social Media into Your Schedule


Ever wish there were more than 24 hours in a day?  Well, we’re not going to tell you the impossible, but we will give you some tips on how to include social media into your workday.

Social media has become more important in our world today, so businesses cannot pass up the opportunity to reach potential customers through these channels.  However, most businesses are struggling to balance their schedules even without social media – so how can social media be added to your marketing efforts?  Social media doesn’t have to be time consuming – follow these easy tips that will create a solid social media plan.

  • Create an actual schedule – Block out a certain chunk of your day to devote yourself completely to social media.  Schedule an hour directly after lunch so you can write blog posts, generate Facebook content, Tweet about company happenings.  Or break up your social media ventures into chunks of time (such as 10 minutes at the beginning of your shift, 10 minutes at the end).  Having a set time will allow you to focus on social media, and help you not get distracted from clicking on other tabs of work.
  • Make a list of your social media priorities – Don’t just dive in without checking if the water is shark infested – have a specific plan about what you’re going to post each day (maybe Mondays will be all about posting about company events to Facebook, and Fridays will be all about researching and listening to customer conversations so you can be on top of your industry’s buzz the following week).  There’s a list of social media must-dos everyday, such as answering direct messages and customer inquiries on your brand page, so make sure you have dedicated time every day to those activities.  Knowing what you’re going to post will make everything seem more organized, and in the long run, it’ll save time.
  • Get social media to work around your schedule – Facebook and Twitter actually have specific times where users are on the most and when they are likely to interact with your content (check out this interesting Mashable article).  But what if these times coincide with your conference meeting every week?  Well, don’t let social media completely rule your life.  You don’t have to reschedule that meeting – use a social media management tool to help you schedule posts and gather insights.  Don’t spend time gathering analytics or waiting for the optimal hour to post when you don’t have to.

Social media isn’t very time-consuming when you have an action-packed, but simplistic plan.  Stick to your plan, and you’ll find that you have more time (and money) that can be devoted to other business efforts.