Beginners Guide to Social Media for Business!

By now, we have all heard about the value of social media. Whether or not your business should use it is clear. Today the question is how. Keeping up with it all can be difficult. Leaving many businesses to fall short. However, with understanding and hard work you can go far in this area. Don’t worry, we’re hear to help. This guide is for you. The business professionals who needs an extra hand. Regardless of your skill level, this course can help you grow your online presence. We hope that you enjoy and share our knowledge. 

Introduction 
We live in the technology era. Today’s society is accustomed to smart devices, such as computers, tablets, phones, and more. This brings us to the rise of digital marketing. Digital marketing helps brands reach the technological consumers of today.

Here are the facts. Over 2.4 billion people having access to the Internet. According to Pew Internet, 74% of those 2.4 billion people on the Internet use social networking sites. These sites have become the main driver of internet activity right now. Of course in business, you want to be where your customers are. This is what gave life to what is now known as social media marketing.

The transition from traditional to social media created a huge gap of knowledge. Even some of the most popular marketing experts could not keep up with the change. This is because most social networking sites are new and change each day. Because of this lack of knowledge, many businesses fail to reap the full benefits of social media. This is where we come in.

In this guide, our goal is to help bridge the knowledge gap in social media for business professionals. You will learn what social media is and how to use it. This guide is designed for everyone. The first few chapters will cover the basics. Take notes and read carefully. Feel free to skip ahead to other chapters if you feel you are more advanced.

What is Social Media?
Peoples’ attention has shifted from traditional media to social media. For this reason, brands that want to have a competitive edge will put a large amount of focus to build a social media presence. Why? Because their customers spend a lot of time using it. While their competitors are not. Thus giving their brands an edge. We plan to show you how you can get the edge. But first let’s define the topic.

What is Social Media? The use of social networking sites to engage with others online. This form of online engagement is great for brands as it allows them to create and build an online community. Your community can help your company increase brand advocates, leads and sales.

Some of the most widely known social networking sites are:

1. Twitter: http://twitter.com/
• A social networking platform that allows its users to post messages, called “tweets”, at a limit of 140 characters.
• One of the best platforms to interact with your audience.
• Types of engagement:
1. Mention – Similar to a reply. You mention (reply) to a user’s tweet.
2. Retweet – To share a tweet. When a tweet is Retweeted it appears on the user’s twitter page for their followers to see.
3. Favorite – Similar to a Bookmark. Favorited tweets are viewable later.
4. Direct Message – A Private Message between you and another user.

2. Instagram: http://instagram.com/
• A social networking platform that is used to promote a business through pictures and video.
• Great for highlighting a business’s uniqueness, employees, accomplishments, and products or services.
• Types of Engagement:
1. Comment – A response to a picture or another user.
2. Like – Users like pictures they find interesting.
3. Direct Message – A private message between you and another user

3. Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/
• The largest social network in the world in terms of users.
• Incorporates video, text, and photo into posts.
• Great for posting long text of information, as there is no character limit.
• Types of Engagement:
1. Like – Users Like post they find interesting.
2. Comment – A response to a post.
3. Share – Post that are shared show up on the users timeline for their friends to see.

4. Youtube: http://www.youtube.com/
• The largest social network in the world that focuses on video.
• Great for showcasing your business and the benefits of using your business via video.
• Types of Engagement:
1. Like or Dislike – Users like videos they enjoy and dislike video they do not.
2. Comment – Users write responses to video they watched
3. Share – When a video is shared the video gets posted on to other social media platforms

5. Google +: http://plus.google.com/
• A growing social media network that puts a heavy focus on connections.
• Content posted on Google+ plays a big factor in search engine optimization.
• Utilizes images, video, and text to create content.
• Types of engagement:
1. +1 Button – Functioning like a Facebook “Like” button, the +1 button allows users to indicate they appreciated your content.
2. Comment – A response to a post or comment.
3. Share – Allows others to share your content on their Google Plus Streams.

6. LinkedIn http://www.linkedin.com/
• A business professional oriented social media platform.
• Great for connecting with decision makers and a wide range of job titles at companies.
• Great for using video, text, and images to highlight your company or expertise.
• Types of engagement:
1. Like – Users like post they find interesting.
2. Comment – A response to a post or comment.
3. Share – Post that are shared show up on the users timeline for their friends to see

What is Social Media Marketing? The act of using social media sites, such as Facebook and Twitter, in a way that will influence the purchasing decisions of your target audience. You want your brand to be top of mind. 

In this guide, you will learn early steps to market your brand to boost leads/sales. But first we must understand the basics. There are two general approaches that we see brands take with their social presence. The singular approach and the plural approach.

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