15 March 2011 By Northern Lights
We have today launched our free ebook, Why you Can’t ignore Social Media in Business.
To those who have been tuned into social media for a few years, the book’s content and style will probably seem basic and old hat. And if I’m honest, I am slightly embarrassed to have written it – I am no ‘expert’!
So why do it?
It is written for our typical clients and contacts – senior business people running businesses that make up the bulk of the UK’s economy, as well as universities. Many are at the stage where they know they probably should understand social media but don’t know where to start. So they have either ignored it or are leaving it to the specialists and ‘youngsters’ to manage. And that worries us.
Business leaders need to understand the principles of social media so they can manage it. They don’t necessarily have to tweet themselves, write a blog or go on LinkedIn, but they do need to understand the risks and missed opportunities for their business.
I predict that within two years a successful business will look old-fashioned if they are not using some of this – above all, it is a way for clients, suppliers and others to engage and build relationships with that organisation. Websites not only look flat without social media, it feels like the business has shut the door on any discussion.
When people Google your business, if it is just your own website that appears then your business will increasingly look self-promoting and lack credibility. Social media provides a rich third party endorsement – others talking about you that is worth ten times what a website on its own can achieve.
In the book, we give Action Tips at the end of every chapter to help newcomers take their first steps – here are some of them.
1. Take your first steps in social media
If you are completely new to social media, block out two hours in your diary, turn off email and phones and immerse yourself in how your customers and contacts are using social media
2. Making your LinkedIn profile work for you
Are you one of the thousands of business people who set up a LinkedIn profile half-heartedly and done little with it since?
If you are going to make LinkedIn work for you, you need to make sure your profile is complete so that you are picked up on searches (tips in the book on how to do this).
Now start being a bit more strategic with it
When we set up our Northern Lights Twitter account, we spent half an hour composing our first tweet! It is terrifying for everyone, but you will get used to it.
We’d love to hear your first steps into social media – and your tips to help others. And any feedback on the book – good and bad!