Winning with Leslie A Monthly Newsletter Twitter leslielgroene Linkid lesliegroene
Leslie Groene Website Homepage Februrary 2016, Vol. 128

Do I need to be on Social Media? The answer is. . . Only if you want people to find you!

I asked this question a couple years ago to my colleague Lynne Gullo, the owner of PinkyonthePulse LLC. She said, "Yes! You're perfect for social media."

At the time, I didn't know what Twitter or a tweet was, but she convinced me that I could use the messages I pass along in my monthly newsletters as tweets on this (new to me) social media platform. I'm glad I did and here's why:

1) People need to find you. How will they do that in 2016? The days of the yellow pages and even industry directories are sadly gone. If you are fortunate enough to have someone looking for you, they are going to Google your name. Will they find you?

2) Your LinkedIn profile: As discussed in my October 2015 newsletter, a LinkedIn profiles is an absolute must for every business professional. Not only should you look up anyone you are meeting for the first time, you can bet that they are going to be looking you up! Make sure your picture, title and Summary section reflect where you are currently in your career. LinkedIn is a powerful search engine and will definitely come up when someone searches your name on the internet. You should be on LI at least once a week.

3) Twitter: This platform is still a powerful global business tool that will boost your presence on the internet. Lynne taught me how to use Twitter to amplify my monthly newsletter messages. It takes work to build your community of both whom you follow and who follows you. Don't give in to the temptation of buying followers. It's an empty proposition and it will be clear to your community that you've done this. It's best to tweet at least once a day.

4) Facebook: Many people have personal Facebook pages and/or company pages. These are great if you have a lot to SHARE and SHOW. Remember, with all social media platforms that everything you post is public, even if you try to keep it private or delete a post. Facebook for a business takes a lot of commitment. You will do best if you plan your content and post with visuals or videos at least three times a week. This is a great introduction to you and your company when used correctly.

5) Instagram and Pinterest: These are strictly visual platforms that can be beneficial to you and your business if you have a lot to show on a daily basis.

6) YouTube, Vine, Periscope, and Snapchat: If you want to learn about these, you had best ask your 12 year-old niece or nephew! These are very important platforms for brands and they should stay on your radar, especially if you have a lot of videos to share and stream.

Your consistent participation in any or all of these platforms will help people find you on the internet. They will also help create a Klout score that others can use to gauge your social media savvy. Use apps like Hootsuite to schedule your messages to social media platforms. It's important to use these platforms to direct people back to your OWN website, so don't neglect keeping that current too. If not now, when? 2016 is not too late to make your presence known!

Here's an example of how I show up on Google:

Focus Point

57. Make the telephone your friend!

Bear with us here; we know this focus point sounds really basic. But do you know how many reputable companies FAIL to call back potential clients? Example: Tom recently tried to hire a roofing company that the local roofing supply firm recommended highly. Tom left a message, but the roofing company never returned the call! That is inexcusable: This company alienated a potential client. It also narrowly escaped sending a red flag to the firm that recommended it, which a complaint by Tom would have triggered.

While we're on this subject, how is your phone system serving you now?

When someone calls you or your company, does a human being answer the phone? Or do you subject your potential clients to frustrating phone systems that drive them crazy? When you're in your office and the phone rings, answer it! Don't drive your potential clients away because you don't want to interrupt your work of the moment.

We're talking about those answering systems that have the caller opt for a given individual before routing the call to voice mail. If you're in, why not just pick up, or at least pick up when the caller designates you?

If you can afford to hire a receptionist to answer your phones, make sure you train her well. When potential clients call, she is the one who represents your company. Yes, such training is one more task for someone with your company. But it is critical that your receptionist and anyone else who answers the phone have a professional demeanor and provide valuable assistance to callers.