If You Haven't Tried Social Media, Don't Knock It...

If You Haven't Tried Social Media, Don't Knock It...

Okay, for some time now I've been attempting to check out this "social media" thing. You know, sites like MySpace.com, StumbleUpon.com and LinkedIn.com. (Just to name a very small few!)

Anyway, I haven't really put in the time to check these sites out seriously and although I have accounts in all the three social media programs I mentioned above, I wasn't getting anything out of them. So, I wasn't putting much into them. I was so wrong!

Marketing Experiments Journal did a little experiment. The experiment compared the cost and effectiveness of social-media against PPC (pay per click) advertising over a time span of 12 months.

The end result was:

Social Media Campaign:

Cost: $3600.00 (paying someone a salary of $10.00/hour)

Number of Visitors: 93,207

Cost Per Visitor: $.04

PPC Campaign

Cost: $1250.00

Number of Visitors: 2,057

Cost Per Visitor: $.61

The social media campaign yielded a 1,578% better ROI than the PPC! The biggest difference was that the PPC campaign was quicker. In other words, once the ads for the campaign were completed and submitted visitors began coming in immediately. But, once again, the turtle wins over the hare. Although the social media campaign took longer to get going, the end result after 12 months of use was, without a doubt impressive.

In addition to this little experiment, I recently attended a local networking group where a speaker was presenting a talk about LinkedIn.com. In case you haven't heard of that program or tried it yet, let me fill you in. LinkedIn is basically an online networking group for businesses of all sizes. It's intention is to link up folks who can use each other's services. Not only do you get connected with another person, but you are then connected to their list of other persons. If you know anything about BNI (Business Network International) then you'll understand LinkedIn. When you attend a BNI meeting they tell you that it's not only the people in this room that you are meeting, you are also meeting the Rolodex that everyone in that room brings with them (in other words, everyone they know). LinkedIn works the same way. And just like BNI where it's "givers get" philosophy works so well. LinkedIn is the same concept with their Answers section. After you join LinkedIn you can go to the Answers tab on top and either answer questions or ask questions. That's how you "get to know" each other. That's how you build trust and begin an online conversation.

After that meeting, I came home and logged on to my LinkedIn account. I asked a question, I answered several questions and it's been about 2 weeks now since I attended that meeting and I've gotten several responses and requests for 2 SEO proposals. So, does it work? Absolutely!!

So, your assignment is to join these networks, or at the very least, join LinkedIn (since it's geared towards business folks). Put in your entire portfolio, a photo, etc. And begin asking and answering questions! You'll not only establish yourself as an expert in your field but you'll grow your business at an extremely low, low cost!