RISMEDIA - Some things never change, including the notion of socializing for business reasons. These days, the only difference is much of this socializing is being done online, which has allowed social circles to grow.
If you haven't already, then start by simply requesting your friends and colleagues join you on your social media sites of choice (examples include Facebook and LinkedIn). You can then chat and tweet with your groups as you like, but it is important to note that while you want them to know who you are and what you do, constant direct selling is not recommended.
Be patient-you will gain business by building a relationship with these contacts on a more personal level. They will recommend you and refer you to their contacts in time, and the business that comes from it will be golden because people trust friends, not corporations. Remember, never place potentially embarrassing pictures or comments online.
You can create profiles on local search engines like YELP.com, which, along with Facebook, MySpace and others, offers smartphone applications, making it fast and easy for potential customers to find you. These applications often offer better matching results and no browser is necessary.
The major point of social media and search engines is to be found. It's your challenge to think through your business, brand and services and to present yourself in a strategic fashion on a consistent basis. Then maintaining sufficient activity levels on these sites will afford you higher rankings in related searches. This social media activity will help stack the results in your favor.
Chris Kaucnik is marketing director for Home Warranty of America, Inc.
For more information, visit www.hwahomewarranty.com.
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