Facebook and Everything Else
It's not a matter of whether you like Facebook or not, it is whether your target audience of potential clients are using Facebook . . . and yes they are.
Facebook is the big dog, and every business should be using it to contact existing and potential customers. With over 800 million worldwide users as of the end of 2011(a), of whom 200 million are in the US, your customers ARE on Facebook.
When we visit with people about Facebook, we ask two questions - 1) Do you have a Facebook account for your organization?, and 2) how often do you use it to promote your business. A majority of people that we ask have a Facebook account, and only a small percentage actually use it. Why? Because they don't have the time. We have been just as guilty as everyone else in the past, but our experience with clients has shown us that we need to meet our audience on Facebook, and we have come up with a routine that we live every day that helps us support our clients and grow Wave's End business.
If you only have 15 minutes a day to spend on-line to touch base with customers, Facebook is it. Check out our 15 Minutes a Day* page to learn more (the * stands for two things - 1) you can budget more time if you feel it is needed, and 2) we ask you to spend 30 minutes one day a week, and 60 minutes one day a month). For 6 out of 7 days, you can succeed with social networking by investing 15 minutes a day.
You can tell your story on Facebook, but it has limitations. Readers tend to have shorter attention spans on Facebook, one or two paragraphs tops. Even with the new Timeline feature, your Facebook postings will drift off the screen and become harder to find. A blog is the answer for extending your message. There are many good blog packages available and they all help you tell your story in a way that Facebook can't - at length, in depth, and over time. Your blog can be on your primary website, or stand on its own, but you are well-served to take an extra hour per week to write a blog and respond to those who comment.
People are attracted visually at a pre-cognitive level by two things - color and movement. Think of toddlers and how their attention is automatically diverted to any video screen. It is true for adults too, and young adults spend more time watching video on computers than on a television.
Video is easy to do, and if you speak in public, have a physical product, and/or customers willing to talk, you can create your own advertising.
And Everything Else
Twitter, GooglePlus, Pinterest, and the flavor of the day. All are good if your audience frequents them. Also, any place, on-line or off, where your audience congregates is where you should be.