Should I Open a New Social Channel? 5 Questions To Ask Yourself

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Guest Post by: Maria Pergolino

As the social media terrain becomes more populated with websites, the choices for B2B social media marketing stretch far and wide. Beyond the old (can we really say that? Facebook, has only been around for seven years, after all!) stalwarts – Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn – there are thousands of other sites to choose from. Such as:

  • Focus: Access advice, research and shared information to help with business decisions.
  • Technorati: Register your blog with this site that hosts a collection of writers and blogs for Business, Entertainment and Technology.
  • Mixx: Submit and rate content to drive traffic to your site.
  • StumbleUpon: Connect to other users through common interests.
  • Reddit: Upload articles, create a following and drive traffic to your site or blog.
  • Tubearoo:  Create and share video content including interviews, tutorials and seminars
  • Digg: Delve into this library of articles on almost every topic
  • Ning: Design your own social network to connect customers, prospects, vendors and industry associates.
  • Delicious: Share interests and articles through tagging and networking.
  • Squidoo: Provide answers to questions about your industry and products/services.

These are just the tip of the iceberg. So while marketers may enjoy a wealth of riches to choose from, not all choices are suited well for you. Strategy, message and audience are just some of the factors that come into play when deciding which social network should be added to your arsenal.

Ask yourself these 5 questions before opening a new social media channel:

  1. What is my main goal? Are you trying to reach a new target audience? Build credibility within your industry? Stay connected to customers? While many of these sites seem similar, there are subtle differences. Decide what that site can do to complement your overall marketing strategy.
  2. What does the site’s main user base entail? General info sharing sites like StumbleUpon and Digg cover a wide variety of topics and that includes user profiles as well. Do you want an expansive reach to a large group or contact with those who closely fit your lead generation profiles?
  3. Is it intuitive? Not only for users’ sakes but for yours as well. If you are going to have a presence on multiple sites, don’t choose ones that sap your time because of complicated formats.
  4. Do I have customers that utilize this channel? Don’t collect channels like Easter eggs. If your customers don’t visit this site, you should think twice about putting your resources there.
  5. Does this site connect with other sites? Remember the primary goal of social media – to connect. Be sure the sites you choose integrate with your other channels (as well as your own site).

As social media continues to expand in influence and content sharing capability, B2B marketers need to keep up to catch all the lead generation opportunities available. The ever-changing face of the net makes this a time consuming job but once you’re monitoring networks regularly, you’ll be on the leading edge of the newest channels.

Have you found any additional channels that fit your B2B marketing requirements? Share your entries here and build your network even larger.

Stay tuned for “10 More Questions to Ask Yourself Before Opening A New B2B Social Media Channel”.

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