Small Business Social Media – A Good Place Start

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While my blog is a small, personal endeavor, I was fortunate to spend several years working for Style Me Pretty, a serious social media machine. Since then I’ve been fascinated and, truth be told, a little overwhelmed by the whole virtual circus. When talking with entrepreneurs, small businesses, and even friends, the biggest hurdle is always where to get going. When it comes to building your social media presence, the possibilities are endless, but fortunately they also offer a great chance to start small… and fairly inconspicuously (phew).

If you wanted to cook more but you’re barely comfortable making pasta, you probably don’t kick things off by attempting Beef Wellington. The same is true with social media. Start with a few ingredients, create things you like, and know you’ll get comfortable with patience and practice.

I personally think Twitter is a good place to get your feet wet. Think of it as scrambled eggs of social media. (Bird pun not intended). While Twitter can take some time to get the hang of, here are a few reasons it’s a nice place to begin your foray into the online conversation.

1. It’s easy to create and edit your account.

Add some details about your company and your url… yes, you can edit this later. Make sure to think about who manages the account? Is it you? A coworker? If it’s someone else, I recommend being very clear from the get go about keeping the conversation work appropriate (i.e. a link to Miley Cyrus’s new video might be off limits).

2. It’s easy to watch how the experts do it.

Follow others. Click the “discover” link at the top of the page to start exploring. Visit your competitors accounts (if they have them) and see what they’re sharing.

3. It’s easy to start tweeting.

Start by sharing articles to relevant content (from your site as well as others’). Retweet posts and reply to people you follow. Just start the conversation and don’t stress too much about making sure you’ve crafted a positively perfect tweet.

*** A very important note, Twitter can also be a hot spot for spam, be very careful clicking on links sent by suspicious users and direct messages. ***

If you’re looking for a more comprehensive Twitter how to check out these links:
- 31 Twitter Tips: How To Use Twitter Tools And Twitter Best Practices For Business
- Getting started with Twitter

Are you a small business owner gearing up to try social media? What other sites have you tried? Likes/dislikes? If you’re not a networking newbie, what’s your advice? What’s your media of choice?