business, customers, Design, Social Media

What’s in Your Lobby?

Eero Aarnio Ball Chairs

I attended a meeting of business owners today and our topic was Social Media.

I would say that most of the people in the group admit that Social Media is important, but have no idea how to really use it.  The rest think its ridiculous, and are too scared to admit they don’t know where to start.

At my end of the table I began to talk about the structure of social media–“its not something viewed with blinders on, as a weekly or even daily activity,” I went on to say as their eyes blurred over.  “Social Media is a long term deal, like good dental care–no “one thing” will give you success, its a long-term, daily process that makes it successful…and most importantly, it takes a commitment to just do it.” (just ask your dentist!)

It’s not rocket science people!  Our kids do it!  Our politicians do it!  We can do it too!

My tips to the naysayers in the room:

  • Do not get overwhelmed.
  • Posting something every day is really for the big guys–more important that posts, small businesses need a strategy–start weekly.
  • Think in terms of the overall month–what is the message you want to speak too?  Can you pick a theme? What is your expertise?
  • Choose one tool this month (blog, fb, twitter, pinterest) and use it all month long.
  • Put the APP on your phone and just look at it daily. Learn about that one thing.  How could it help your business?
  • Write out (in advance) when and what you will post–even a quote will tell people who you are and how you can help them.
  • People use machines, but want to do business with people…..people they like and respect.
  • In its simplest terms–Social Media is your internet personality.

Social Media is a means to an end.  Sadly, it is not an obvious and easily trackable one for the small business owner.

But here is a way to look at social media that every business owner can understand: The Lobby.
Social Media is the “lobby” of your business…and it’s time to paid attention to what is in yours.

Stop for a moment.  Close your eyes and imagine that brick and mortar office that everyone use to have.  Now think of that lobby area.  The place that everyone enters to see you, your business.  This is your virtual business place.

How would you decorate that “lobby”?  What images are on the walls that illustrate your business?  What colors do you use? What magazines are on display? Are your awards/credentials on display? What gives your clients confidence to do business with you?  How can you display your “business personality”? In other words, are you a shag, plush wool or hard wood floor kinda of place?

Now put those thoughts into action.

First Step: Start a folder on your hard drive and call it “My Brand.”

Then make a commitment to daily put articles, images, quotes, web items that relate to you and your business into that folder.

Those are the things that will decorate your lobby ….and for social media purposes—be posted throughout the month.  

See?  it is easy!

By the end of the month you could have collected a years worth of posts and materials.  Now you are ready for a strategy!

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