At my seminars and workshops, many business owners ask me why they should be using Twitter, have a Facebook page, or connect with people by LinkedIn. In short, the answer is: to be found on the Internet. There's so much more to why and how a business or organization can benefit from having a presence (including managing one's reputation, putting a face or personality on a company, attracting prospects, informing customers.....the list goes on), however at its most basic level, participating in social media sites can greatly increase your ranking on search engines.
Case in point: have you Googled yourself or your company name lately? In many cases, your social media profile will be among the top 3 search results. Think about how many people use Google to find products, services and people - perhaps at a local or statewide level. For example, "financial planners in Providence" or "Rhode Island restaurants." Google is a worldwide site that helps to connect people at a very local level. Let's not fail to mention the 200+ million conversations happening daily on social media sites.
Once you master the basics of the social media platform of choice for your business - be it Twitter, Facebook or LinkedIn which seem to be the most popular - you can begin to harness the ability to establish yourself as an expert, position your company in the marketplace, differentiate your business, engage prospects, customers and influencers, monitor trends and conversations related to your business category, and see what the competition is up to! Best of all, you don't have to pay to use social media (unless you want to) and millions of people are logged in daily. What business can't afford NOT to be using this tool of marketing?