Blogging to Connect with Customers

PatrickThose that have begun the process of using social media, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc. start by being driven by a desire to get their name out on the web. They understand the value of being visible and being found but still use the tools as one way – push your message out there, vehicles.

The reality is that social media is a powerful, real time, opportunity to connect with customers. To showcase your knowledge and to invite questions, comments or opinions.

In a recent blog post writer Lisa Barone asks the question “should you blog to consumers or contempories?” In other words – who are you writing for? 

One school of thought has the purpose of blogging to be connecting with others in the industry – to be a thought leader to your peers. To be the one others “retweet” or comment about.

Lisa has a different view – one that I tend to agree with wholeheartedly:

For a small business owner, I think your blogging investment is far better spent producing content for your customers, not for your colleagues in the industry.

She goes on to list some very compelling reasons:

  • Your customers are the one performing searches – looking for a person or company  with your expertise.
  • You need to build authority with customers, not colleagues. Afterall – who is the one buying from you?
  • You want to start conversation with customers, not colleagues.  – So true!
  • Your customers are checking for your pulse, no one else. They want to buy from someone they like and trust and what better way to learn more about you, what you know and what you stand for then by reading your blog posts?

Read Lisa’s entire blog post here.

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The Seven Things I Love About Social Media

I’m preparing for a series of four classes I’ll be teaching on social media – especially how social media can be used to connect with your customers.  So I thought I’d just jot down a few of my thoughts and maybe even start an Internet meme.

  1. Blogging – sharing my thoughts about customer service and learning from others about topics I’m interested in.
  2. The Global Conversation. Is it just me or do you find it cool that you can meet and develop a relationship with people anywhere in the world? Following Ian Usher who sold his life on Ebay. He lives in Australia but for 100 weeks he is accomplishing 100 goals. He was just in Easter Island – the one place on earth I really want to go to and we conversed via the comments section of his blog WHILE HE WAS ON EASTER ISLAND. It doesn’t get cooler than that.
  3. YouTube – let’s face it – when you need a break from work, there’s nothing like viewing the funny/stupid videos of the day. However, it is also a great way to communicate your message in a visual fashion.
  4. Twitter – I am amazed by the famous people I have had the opportunity to tweet with and the connections I’ve made in just 140 characters or less.
  5. The immediacy. Gone are the days of waiting for the daily paper to arrive on your doorstep. If you missed the recent episode of the Bachelor – you can find out right away who didn’t get a rose. Plus, you can listen to comments from your customers the instant they have something to say.
  6. Sharing of pics, videos and fun stuff. I love that I can upload a video of my daughter’s flute recital, photos from my trip to Italy or, an Animoto video of my customer service book and share with customers, friends and Tweeple.
  7. It’s just so simple to connect with customers!Jump in with both feet. Bite off a little or a lot, but really the applications are point-and-click easy.

So what are your favorite things about social media? I’d love to hear all your answers, but specifically I’d love to hear from Chris Brown, Ron McDaniel and Drew McLellan. Tag you are it!

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