Using Online Social Networks To Help In Marketing Your Business

By: Bruce Tucker

Social networks like MySpace, Facebook, LinkedIn and of course our site, are all the rage right now and have been for a couple of years. They are a means by which people from all over the globe can come together, meet, socialize and learn new things. You make new friends, share ideas and so much more.

The downfall of social networks as it relates to business is very few companies have been able to figure out how to use these websites wisely to build a customer base or a following.

Here are some suggestions that you can use that might help your business in the realm of social networks.

According to Michael Bush of Advertising Age, "If ever there was a place in the world of marketing where the motto of 'look before you leap' held much credence, it's here. Any marketer worth its salt is going to spend a good deal of time studying the dynamics, rules and language of any social network before attempting to establish a presence there. To think you can just waltz in and begin spouting off about your product is totally wrong."

If you walk into a social network and start acting as if everyone should be your friend, join your club, or have an arrogant persona about you, chances are no one will listen and even worse you might get banned from the site.

Bush says, "If there are any marketers out there who still believe the world of social networks is filled only with young nerdy types and weirdos looking to hook up, they need to take a good second look. Not only is it a prime target for marketers looking to reach moms-the all-important gatekeeper of the household-but within some of the most popular networks, a significant percentage of users are over the age of 35." The demographics for social networks are changing daily. Not only are the age ranges changing, but more and more people are joining. These people are your potential customers. You need to become a part of any social network and really should be a part of all of them to get your business name, products and services out there.

Studies have shown that using mainstream marketing and advertising methods will not work. If that is the case, what is the purpose of social networks then? According to Rick Murray, the president of Edelman digital, "Frequency of message is not the idea here, Frequency of contact is."

Social networks are areas where consumers go to ask questions on products or services they are thinking about buying or using. This presents a great opportunity to you. Not to throw an ad in their face in the hopes that they buy, but to socialize with them by answering their questions. This helps them with their issue and helps your business by presenting you and your company as experts in an industry.

Although social networks have been around for a little while they really are still in their infancy. You need to become a part of them, get involved in helping consumers with the expertise in your field, and start building your friend's list. That list will eventually turn into your customer base.

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Mr. Tucker is the Associate Director of, an online advertising and social network medium where you can promote your business, products or services without pay-per-click prices or auction fees.

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