The explosion of social media over the last decade has completely changed the way we connect with the world around us. What started out as just another way of staying in touch with friends has suddenly become arguably one the most popular and important ways for businesses to interact with their clients, advertise their services and join in the conversation about related topics in real-time.
Gone are the days of quirky MySpace profile questionnaires, these days it’s a serious business! Since Facebook found a way to market itself to reputable brands, the world of social media hasn’t looked back.
Twitter became the place to be for real-time conversations about the latest news and events worldwide, Instagram was born and became a platform for brands to step up their photography game and share some first-class content, LinkedIn is the place to be for professional discourse and YouTube evolved beyond home videos and is now the place for influencers to make a difference and reach global audiences.
The content you create on social media will define your brand so it’s important to put out the best to amplify your brand and help your clients (and future customers) discover you!
Why build a brand online?
Social media allows us to:
- Discover new ideas and trends
- Connect with existing and new audiences on a more personal level
- Bring attention to your brand
- Enhance your customer experience
- Share positive news about the business
Simply put, if your business isn’t on social media – you’re seriously missing out!
If you want to get your business out there but don’t know where to start, here’s an easy to follow guide on how to use social media for your career in IT!
Social media is pretty much the marketing method of choice for many companies, not only is it cheaper (usually free unless you opt for paid advertising - bonus) it’s also environmentally friendly as you won’t be producing any printed materials, so you can keep your business’ carbon footprint low (super bonus!)
You’ll be able to embed your brand in the areas you want to be ‘seen’ in by utilising certain hashtags that either relates to your brand or the topic you are highlighting with your post.
If you don’t work for yourself, be aware of company policies about the use of social media and make sure you are sticking to their social voice and quality of content.
Finding the right platform
Unless you’ve just beamed down to Earth from another planet, you’ll already be aware of the many social media platforms available to us. They all have different features and audiences and you’ll be wise to do a little research to find the right platform that’s right for your business. Not sure which one to choose?
Here’s an overview of each program and its features:
Find and connect with relevant professionals in your industry. This platform is ideal for building connections for freelance work, a customer base, potential partners, or simply to keep your job prospects open!
This platform is used for short interactive messages known as ‘tweets’. Best known for it’s trending hashtag feature, you’ll be able to keep on top of the latest news and be able to add your voice to the real-time conversation with a global audience. You’ll also be able to ‘retweet’ relevant media posts which will help you to keep your timeline active and interesting for your followers and help you to get your business noticed in new places.
This worldwide phenomenon is loved by both companies and customers alike, giving you a unique opportunity to interact and network with other professionals whilst also keeping in close contact with your valued customer base. With more than two billion users worldwide, it’s the most powerful and influential of all the social networks.
Built around photos, videos and captions, this platform has around 800 million users and is increasingly becoming a vital part of the business world.
If your work is pretty visual (for example if you are a software developer or a web developer), Instagram should be part of your business toolkit.
: The video sharing platform allows users to watch, like, share, upload and comment on videos. YouTube is a great place to discover new things, find out the latest news in the world of technology (including reviews) and of course a way for you to share your knowledge with your customers (and the world!)
With more than 300 million users, Snapchat is an easy-to-use and relevant marketing tool that is useful for many businesses. While it’s a great tool, it’s not ideal for every business. The app is used primarily by millennials so consider your target audience before creating a business page on this platform. Snapchat allows you to share temporary, short (a few seconds long) video clips or images with followers.
A helpful blog can influence conversations, develop relationships, build a great reputation for being knowledgeable in your field and allow your business to be found easier in Google searches due to the use of keywords. You’ll be able to engage your audience and get them to listen to what you have to say, this can then go on to help you turn someone from a reader into a customer!
When using these platforms, it’s important to keep your brand safe with the use of strong passwords, you don’t want to get hacked and have someone take control of your business pages!
Find out more about cyber hacking here!
Plan for success
Whether you have your own tech business or you work for a company, you’ll probably find that sitting down to plan out your content can easily slip your mind; but posting nothing means you’re missing out on the millions of people online many of whom could be potential clients or those with the opportunity to convert. It’s worth dedicating a few hours at least once a week to plan out your content for the week ahead - most platforms allow you to schedule posts ahead of time, so it can tick along on its own and you’ll only have to keep an eye on messages and notifications.
You don’t need to be an expert to get success from social media advertising. You’ll be able to target your adverts to specific demographics including locations, interests, age ranges and more. Unless you are launching a post to specifically be an advert, you’ll be able to use the program’s insights to determine which organic posts may be worth turning into a paid advert.
Want to discover more tips to help you run a successful IT business? Read this next!
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