Tools Twitter And Foundations

by Alicia Arenas on July 22, 2009

Construction Worker - Saad.AkhtarI had the opportunity to attend the San Antonio Tweet Camp last Saturday. What a great experience! We had people from Austin, Corpus Christi and even Houston attend. If you click on this link, you’ll find expert sessions from Michael Long (aka The Red Recruiter) and more.

One of my favorite presenters was Colleen Pence and she said something that I hope everyone heard. She said that when she works with her clients, she helps them create a social media strategy.

What? That didn’t rock your world? Well it should.

Look at it this way. You’re an architect, you’ve been charged with designing a five-story office building. What is the most important component of your design? If you live in Central Texas, you might be thinking about covered parking. Ladies, I know the most important thing to us would be having enough restrooms (we hate lines). If you’re an interior designer, you may be focused on tile quality & color, niches for artwork, ambient lighting, etc.  And you know what? All of these things are very important; no one will want to occupy your building unless these things are in place. But if your building collapses because the foundation sucks, you’re going to have some serious problems.  My challenge to you is this: spend as much time creating a solid social media foundation as you spend learning the tools.

Creating a Social Media Foundation

So how do you build a strategic social media foundation? If you’re a successful business owner, this may sound familiar:

1 – What is your brand?

You’re not competing for attention in your local community anymore; you’re competing globally. Let that sink in a moment. When I really grasped the enormity of the opportunity, it revolutionized my business model. You are faced with a fantastic opportunity, but to seize it, your brand and your distinctions must be rock-solid. Questions to answer are:

  • What are your distinctions?
  • What are your personal values?
  • What do you do (have) that is different from your competitors?
  • What do you do (have) that is better than your competitors?
  • What is the value of your product or services?
  • What are your passions?
  • What drove you to start your business?

I’ve done some posts about branding and my friend Chris Brogan has some amazing articles on branding which you can find here.

2 – Who are your target customers?

If you want your social media marketing efforts to be effective, you need to get laser-specific about your target customers. You cannot and should not be all things to all people. Some things to consider are:

  • Who is going to buy your products or your services?
  • Where do they live?
  • Are they male or female?
  • Single or married?
  • How old are they?
  • What types of jobs do they have?
  • What other types of products do they buy?
  • Where would they hang out online?

3 – What will your target customers talk about?

What kinds of conversations are your target customers having? Really. Put yourself in their shoes and think about what they would say to each other online. I doubt they would use a phrase like, “It is vitally important that I find an attorney.” They would probably say, “I need a lawyer.” Also think about what words they would use in their bios. What groups would they join on Facebook or LinkedIn? What kinds of things would they tweet about?

So what am I missing? Any other questions we should be asking ourselves?

(c) The Alicia Arenas Companies, LLC 2009

Photo Courtesy of: Saad.Akhtar

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