Social Media 101
For someone like myself who grew up constantly adapting to new technology, it’s easy to forget that social networks aren’t second nature to everyone. While I thought I had everything pretty much down pat when I stepped into the role of CustomMade’s social media manager, it turns out I too had a lot to learn about social networking. So, I thought it would be good to share some of the things I’ve learned with you.
Social media is for everyone.
The beginning of the internet revolutionized technology because it brought computers that were miles and miles away into one central, virtual area. Social networking revolutionized the internet by applying this principle to people. Trade shows are great for meeting people and getting their eyes on your work, but few can afford the time and money it takes to rely on that as their sole marketing avenue. Social networks let you join these communities that are interested in your work, even if those communities are spread out all over the state, country, or world.
Social media doesn’t work alone.
A common misconception is that simply creating a Facebook page or a Twitter account will benefit your business. Wrong. Effective use of social media requires an ongoing dialogue, which means you have to be willing to engage in discussions with people, pose provocative questions, and post engaging content on a daily basis. If these are things that sound out of character for you, don’t worry; social media is the great communication leveler. Those who aren’t prone to jumping into discussions in real life have the safety of a computer screen between them and the world. So, read some success stories, join forums, and dive into the discussion. You have a lot to say, and there are lots of people who want to hear your thoughts.
If people are following you on Twitter or “Like” you on Facebook, it’s because they want to learn more about you. They know you’re a woodworker (and a human being) so you don’t need to speak in catch phrases or snappy marketing lingo. They just want to hear about you, your shop, what you’re working on, and your opinions on what’s going on in the industry. And hey, if you happen to throw in a comment about how good dinner was that night, that’s alright, too.
If there is one thing I hope can be taken away from this, it’s the importance of community. As woodworkers, as believers in custom, as artisans of all types, the community is a huge aspect of what keeps up going. For the sake of your businesss, your relationships, and the very ideal you are working hard to preserve, get involved! Share your thoughts, build relationships, and be heard.
Have you delved into the world of social media? Share your thoughts below on what has worked, what hasn’t, or why you haven’t taken the plunge.