Keys to having a Website that is a Prospect Magnate with Jennifer Bagley of Compliments International and Patrick Dougher

This is a great interview with Jennifer Bagley the CEO of Compliments International on Learning From Leaders TV show on Channel 34 in the DFW area. Jennifer and I talk about the Keys to converting your website into a Marketing Magnate for your company attracting prospects for you to convert to clients. This show is about 28 minutes in length and is worth the view. If you would like to visit about your site to see what needs to be done with your website to make it more attractive to the search engines and your future clients email me at

Keys to having a Website that is a Prospect Magnate with Jennifer Bagley of Compliments International and Patrick Dougher

This is a great interview with Jennifer Bagley the CEO of Compliments International on Learning From Leaders TV show on Channel 34 in the DFW area. Jennifer and I talk about the Keys to converting your website into a Marketing Magnate for your company attracting prospects for you to convert to clients. This show is about 28 minutes in length and is worth the view. If you would like to visit about your site to see what needs to be done with your website to make it more attractive to the search engines and your future clients email me at


Fear of Social Media: See no evil

What’s stopping you from including social media in your marketing plan? Is it a fear of the unknown? Many companies often react this way. It’s a common human reaction to things that are considered new or unfamiliar. Moving your brand into a space that enables direct conversation and engagement with your consumers can be a scary idea for many businesses. How would you react if customer sentiment turns negative?

Here are some pointers on how to manage unexpected or negative comments and why you need be there to respond:

Listen – as with all marketing, listening is the first step to understanding your customers. Listen to what is being said about your brand.
Have a plan – it’s important to consider how you will respond to different situations, this will avoid feeling shocked or unprepared when comments appear. You should build hypothetical response scenarios into your social media strategy.
Stay calm – seeing negative comments can insight panic, try to stay level headed and think carefully about the best way to respond.
Get your facts straight – make sure that your response is accurate and truthful, you’ll only have a backlash to deal with if you are found to be hiding facts.
Be transparent – this shows that you believe in your brand and will openly respond to critics. Mag Nation did this well recently when they openly posted a negative comment, that had been directed at them, with their response and then tweeted it out to their followers.
Be true to your brand – don’t change your voice. If your brand has a particular personality, maintain this in your response. Why suddenly change to a corporate, dry tone and confuse fans and followers?

Be true to your brand – don’t change your voice. If your brand has a particular personality, maintain this in your response. Why suddenly change to a corporate, dry tone and confuse fans and followers?

Even if you are scared of social media at first, keep in mind that it will get easier with time and experience. It is also important to remember that it is better for your brand to be aware of comments, both good and bad, to ensure you get a chance to respond to them. Being scared of what people may say doesn’t stop them saying it, it just means that you are choosing to ignore it. As previously mentioned Mag Nation’s recent response was handled well and met with positive comments from their readers. See Mag Nation’s full response here.

Do you have any examples of well executed responses?

I am a Social Media Coordinator at Daemon Group, a Sydney based integrated communications agency specialising in brand, employee to business communications, marketing and digital. I love the endless development and opportunities within the social media world. Working within this industry keeps me motivated, challenged and inspired.


How Social Media Is Helping the Hyundai Motor Company

“Finding important and relevant information is not easy when you are unfamiliar with how to perform certain modifications,” said a Hyundai spokesperson. “Having a forum and website where answers to important questions are laid out for you, would help with modifying your Hyundai to its highest potential.”

Building Better Cars and Better Customer Relations.

Hyundai has been getting a lot of attention these days as a company that cares about its customers and part of this success can be credited to social media marketing. By integrating a customer relationship management (CRM) strategy with social media along with their traditional marketing, Hyundai has branded itself as an altruistic company that really does care about its’ customers. In fact – Hyundai has jumped ahead of every other car manufacturer in the critical customer satisfaction index (CSI) category. Here are a few examples how Hyundai is applying their social media marketing strategy in key parts of their business and how it is paying off.


Hyundai’s Assurance Program began in early 2009 when the economy was at its worst and unemployment was rising rapidly. The Hyundai Assurance Program promised that if you got laid off from your job, you could return your car and not even have to worry about honoring the rest of the note payable. The promotion was innovative but coming from a major car corporation was it believable? The attention the campaign received from the press and from many blogs and websites was skeptical.

Hyundai began promoting the idea on Facebook and Twitter. They asked everyone to buzz and tweet about it and people responded with enthusiasm. The idea of social networking for business exposure is not new but the strategy was extraordinary because it laid the groundwork for the campaign and gave it credibility. It was a brilliant way to market a promotion that really did work. Sharing this information on Facebook and Twitter turned out to be a big plus for the car company’s marketing campaign.

Hyundai sales are up 6.2 percent through November 2009. This marks the eleventh consecutive month of year-over-year gains in retail market share by Hyundai. The Hyundai Assurance Program is without doubt one of the reasons their sales have increased this year while other car manufacturers have floundered.

Corporate Responsibility

Zafar Brooks, Director of Government Relations and Diversity Outreach at Hyundai, has a refreshing perspective on the value of social media when combined with corporate outreach programs. The Hyundai “Hope on Wheels” program fights pediatric cancer by funding cancer research programs across the country. Brooks understands the importance of authenticity and relevance in social media outreach, particularly on behalf of corporate charitable programs.

He said: “Consumers are more sophisticated now — corporate social responsibility programs are no longer something that is ‘nice’ to do, but it’s expected of the company,” noted Brooks. “Simultaneously, consumers will smell-out what is not authentic — Hope on Wheels isn’t advertised, but is part of the news we share with our brand loyalists,” he said. “It is a part of our story because it is a part of who we are and what we are about. Social media should be authentic and organic.”

Mr. Brooks added, “Brand leaders must align themselves with a cause that is consistent with corporate values so they can illustrate their relevancy. Leadership has to establish the priorities around which we stand and make it part of our messaging point.”

Brooks concluded: “All social media should link together with a common objective to develop a program based on who we want to talk to about what we want to accomplish. Social media outreach must be part of a cohesive approach. Consumers will smell-out what is not authentic!”


Hyundai Aftermarket recently announced the launch of a new social media campaign. The goal was to give Hyundai owners a new way of finding content on the internet about modifying their vehicles. The interactive social media campaign involves additional features being built into the Hyundai forum that owners can use effectively to get the word out about what they are doing to make their cars stand out from the rest. Twitter accounts and Facebook “Fan Pages” have been built so that owners can follow live updated news feeds about Hyundai Aftermarket as well.

“Finding important and relevant information is not easy when you are unfamiliar with how to perform certain modifications,” said a Hyundai spokesperson. “Having a forum and website where answers to important questions are laid out for you, would help with modifying your Hyundai to its highest potential.”

While the site has been branded as the “web’s most premier Hyundai forum” and currently is the oldest Hyundai forum on the internet, it has been designed for both the amateur and professional car enthusiast in mind. The site is built on the principle of being very easy going and helpful to anyone who may or may not know a lot about Hyundai’s. Users register for free and can partake in discussions about Hyundai Accents, Tiburons, Elantra’s, Sonata’s, Santa Fe’s and the all new Hyundai Genesis.

In addition to providing great technical content, hyundaiaftermarket provides great off topic discussions ranging in everything from technology to music & movies to even food and health/nutrition.

Sofia Sapojnikova
Vesta Digital
IntelBuilder Social Media Platform


7 Steps To Leverage Social Media For Increasing Web Site Traffic

Social media sites like Facebook, Twitter, MySpace etc. have become popular among the internet marketers. Most marketers hawk their websites, blog, affiliate links, list building URLs, etc. all day long to drive traffic to their web sites. Not only it is annoying to the network members, but also the effectiveness of such a strategy is yet to be proven.

However, you cannot ignore this emerging medium. You need to embrace it using a different mindset. If you follow the seven guidelines discussed below, you will be able to increase traffic to your site from these social media sites without exposing yourself as a self-centered marketer who will do anything to cash in on every opportunity.

1. Create a profile page at each site and detail your interests, expertise, blogs, and websites in your profile. In Twitter, you are limited by text space and the number of URLs you can use in your bio. Facebook has more flexibility and you can pull your blog RSS into the Facebook notes.

Social network sites are pull medium where the old push marketing fails miserably. Your goal should be to pull people to your profile page by regularly posting valuable and interesting contents from other sites. You can post your blog article in Twitter occasionally but don’t submit every blog post your create.

2. The old school marketing relies on four Ps – price, product, placement, and promotion. The social media adds another dimension and one more P to the marketing philosophy and it is the participation.

You need to participate in the conversion and at the same time encourage others to participate. If you want to build a community that will trust you, you need to participate by providing expert opinions and valuable information. You need to help others when somebody has a question. Even if don’t know the answer, find it out by spending sometime on the Web.

You also need to draw others in the discussions by asking questions, giving controversial opinions, raising interesting issues that affect your niche. Passively posting your URL all over the place will not bring traffic to your site. Only concerted efforts to position yourself as a knowledgeable person in your niche will result in more visitors to your site.

3. To position yourself as an expert in your niche, you need to create contents that are fresh, interesting, and valuable to your readers. You also have to discover high quality contents in your niche for sharing with others. Subscribe to a few dozen blogs and scan them everyday for high quality contents so that you can share it with others in your network.

4. You cannot hide yourself in the social media world. If you are a fake, people will discover it fast and you will lose trust and traffic. So, be authentic, transparent and humble in all your conversations. If you make a mistake, admit it and move on.

5. To establish your credibility and expertise, you should read a wide variety of topics in your niche and explain them to others in the form of blog post, ebooks, white papers, etc. Give it all for free without any strings attached. Encourage others to distribute your materials.

If you are not sharing some valuable information, somebody else will share it. You cannot hide any information. It is better to be the first mover than wondering how did everybody find it out.

6. Be prepared to change your mind set. The old school mindset for driving traffic is posting you site links everywhere. The social media mind set is establishing yourself as an expert and sharing your knowledge. Once people know that you are a good resource for solutions to their problems, they will come to your site and you can monetize your site in different ways.

If you are wondering how you are going to make money if you give every thing for free than you need to understand this new medium before you jump into the bandwagon by posting your URLs every hour. Your goal is to drive traffic to your site. Your site may monetize using a variety of methods like, third party advertisement, selling tutorials, affiliate marketing, selling memberships, etc.

7. Social media is a marketing tool set that you leverage to drive traffic to your web site. For leveraging this new medium, you need to establish yourself as a good community member first. Don’t be farcical like Walmart who paid to Jim and Laura to blog around the country in Walmart parking lots capturing stories of Walmart employees and how they loved to work at Walmart.

You may enjoy a short-lived traffic boost to your site, but it will not last longer. When the truth is exposed, it will be a public relation nightmare for you or your brand. Build your brand by telling the truth. There is nothing wrong if you are sponsored by a corporation, just reveal the truth.

Post free classifieds and free ads for all your free online marketing needs. Build links and traffic using free social media link building tool created by Dr. Deepak Dutta

Fighting Recession With Social Media – Part 1

Should StumbleUpon, LinkedIn, Twitter, or other social media applications going to be your only source of market research? Of course not, but social media offers an abundance of honest conversation from which business can gather a wide range of vital information.

As budgets are drying up entrepreneurs are turning, yet again, to technology, social media comes to the rescue. Words such as YouTube, Facebook, and LinkedIn would have been considered typos not too recently have become part of our corporate success dictionary. Social media offers companies inexpensive ways to improve their customer service, ramp up their customer service, learn more about their market, reduce their expenses, and more.

Improve your customer service

Having a conversation with your customers through social media is a new business skill. In an effort to improve its public image, Dell has made a conscious effort to connect with its customers through various social media channels such as blogs, forums, and various third-party websites. Dell had to appreciate that customers talked about their products online, and the company was forced to become part of the conversation. With a little help from their social media friend Dell managed to make improvements to its Latitude laptop. Note: It was a Dell laptop that exploded into flames at a conference in Japan.

Social media is the great equalizer as the story of Jeff Jarvis, an unhappy Dell customer, shows. Jarvis took on this giant of a company using his own blog. He managed to create awareness about customer concerns that had reached an international audience. Initially, Dell had ignored the blog voicing Jarvis’ concerns until his blog became the outlet for public conversation of customer issues. His blog, the BuzzMachine, has become the focus of Dell’s mistakes, poor customer service and flawed products.

The blogosphere doesn’t create the problems it simply brings them to light, and it makes it possible for business to address the issues at hand. Now, the CEOs of companies don’t have to take customer service managers word for it, they can learn about customer issues directly from the source. Some might argue that somehow this is a bad thing. On the contrary, with social media, companies and consumers can realize problems that need to be addressed. Customer engagement through social media could only hurt a company in the long run that is not interested in positive change. Instead of creating a problem social media brings a new level of efficiency to the corporate world.

Do more research

Market research is no longer a luxury only large companies can afford. Social media is the market research alternative for small and mid-size businesses that don’t have money to burn. Especially in a recession, market research is an essential part of a winning corporate strategy. Using social media, companies can carry out their own market research, and the best part is that it’s free.

Search for the topic of your choice on StumbleUpon and learn what people say. One of the greatest aspects of StumbleUpon is that marketers can easily find websites related to their market that they would never find on their own. Businesses can use this website to get instant feedback. The community is continually engaged providing constant opinion that result in a better product. A company might be developing new packaging for a product and get instant criticism from the online community. Something that might have taken weeks and months using traditional methods can be done in a matter of days or even hours. This method is not only fast, but it is also free.

LinkedIn, the social media outlet for grownups, is a rich and dynamic database, which can be searched, mined, and yield insightful and useful information to you and your business. Through its “Answers” feature LinkedIn serves as a valuable market research tool because it enables users to ask questions on virtually any topic, and expect to get answers quickly from the community. Executives can ask questions about products, services, trends, or any topic that might be useful to gain a better insight into their market. You can use the search feature to find people by industry, job title, company, or geographical location. The search results include vital corporate information.

Twitter, a micro blogging service, with its millions of users, offers a world of market intelligence for your business. Twitter is the killer app for marketers that are dying to become the fly on the wall as they are given the opportunity to listen in on public conversations about their market, social issues, products, services, or industry trends. Twitter provides near-real time intelligence on virtually any market.

Should StumbleUpon, LinkedIn, Twitter, or other social media applications going to be your only source of market research? Of course not, but social media offers an abundance of honest conversation from which business can gather a wide range of vital information.

Social Media ? Your Brand Reputation Depends on Doing It Right

Blogs, play a major role in influencing the purchasing decision amongst women in particular, and in a recent survey in the US, 85% of regular female blog readers said they were influenced to make a purchase as a result of a review or comment posted on a blog. So with that in mind, if you’re the company that gets it right, you have a good chance of getting the sale, but what happens if you are on the receiving end of a negative review or comment. How do you protect your brand and how should you respond?

As part of any social media strategy, it’s very important that the impact of social media on brand building and  the impact blogs have on the purchasing decisions of consumers is considered and factored into your strategy.

A social media strategy is not just about Facebook and Twitter, which is what some so called “experts” will have you believe, it is and should always be treated as a Corporate Communications Strategy for your business.

Blogs, play a major role in influencing the purchasing decision amongst women in particular, and in a recent survey in the US, 85% of regular female blog readers said they were influenced to make a purchase as a result of a review or comment posted on a blog.  So with that in mind, if you’re the company that gets it right, you have a good chance of getting the sale, but what happens if you are on the receiving end of a negative review or comment. How do you protect your brand and how should you respond?

Your customers can now read, listen, discuss and research their purchasing decisions and you need to work harder at customer service than ever before, if you are finding negative or damaging reviews about you,your brand or service then use this as a wake up call. The world of social media networks, business review sites and blogs has provided the disgruntled consumer with a voice.

Every employee in your company is now responsible for your brands reputation, and when you as a company, start to live up to your reputation, it becomes a lot easier to manage your brand effectively on line.

If you do find a negative review on any of the sites, resist the temptation to respond defensively and do  not allow any of your staff to respond, you could put the Streisand effect in motion.

What can be used to deliver a negative can also be used to promote a positive, so use it wisely.

Remember it’s very hard to remove a negative comment or search engine result once it hits the web.

Mike Andrew owns and operates an Internet Marketing Consultancy on the Gold Coast in Queensland. Visit Mike’s web site at

Tips for getting social media marketing right

As more businesses invest more time and money into social media marketing (SMM), it’s important to understand not only the benefits but also the processes for planning and implementing a successful SMM campaign to maximise return on investment.

Businesses are embracing social media and social media marketing as part of their broader marketing strategies far more readily these days. This is encouraging to see, especially among corporates who are typically resistant to change and frequently have trouble adapting rather time-consuming and cumbersome bureaucratic processes to the relatively fast pace of the online environment.

Of course, there are challenges other than administration to overcome when it comes to social media. For a start, social media is about conversations and personalities. You are vying for your users’ attention – so if you don’t engage them with a really great personality or brand that they personally want to endorse – you’re going to get lost in the din and are losing out on potential “ambassadors”.

Social media has made the marketing maxim of telling believable stories even more important. One-way, push marketing communication is on its way out. This is now an attention economy, and in a world where time-starved customers are bombarded with marketing messages it’s hard to get through. Now that consumers can choose what they look at, do they want to look at and engage with you?

This buy-in is key to engaging with customers. Many would say that getting this kind of subscription comes down to authenticity and networking. This is true. However, to really get the most bang for your buck, the loop also needs to be closed when it comes to social media marketing and strategies need to be cleverly integrated across channels to create a ‘through-the-line’ approach that works.

This is the reason that many social media marketing campaigns are unsuccessful or not as effective as they could be. There needs to be not only follow-through, but also a cleverly integrated approach.

The easiest way to achieve this is by having a clear idea of where you want to go with your campaign – as well as define what your measurables are going to be before you start. It’s sometimes hard in some social media to predict exactly what will happen, as conversations tend to follow an organic flow. You can’t really force this. However, a clever social media marketer will be able to steer and lead conversations in such a way that they remain natural and unobtrusive.

Many web development and marketing companies now offer social media marketing as one of their services. While there are plenty of agencies and consultancies that do legitimately specialise in and have experience within the field, there are many who don’t. There are a number of common pit-falls – and where most fall short is in there execution and maintenance of these campaigns. It’s not just a case of creating a Facebook group and forgetting about it. The social media elements that one chooses to use need to be managed and maintained and relationships with customers need to be cultivated and grown.

What are the core factors in executing a successful social media marketing campaign?

First of all, decide what your story is. This is still at the core of effective marketing. Make sure it’s credible and one that your target market subscribe to. Make sure that you remain authentic.

Second, ensure that your goals and metrics are well defined. You need to have an idea of where you want to go with this campaign and how you intend to measure your success.

These two decisions will affect your third consideration – which is where you are going to find this audience. If you know who you’re trying to reach through social media – you’ll better be able to identify where they are online.

Finally, you need to be honest about whether your business is ready to be involved and invested. The process of social media marketing takes time and effort. You can’t just put up a Facebook fan page and create a Twitter account and call that a social media strategy. You need to ensure that you are invested. If you are not “socialising” though interaction and involvement with your community, you are not really present.

In this way, you will be able to listen to, respond to and influence your audience. When deciding to embark on a social media marketing strategy, it’s worth ensuring that whoever you choose to implement the campaign has the experience and foresight necessary to execute it fully and effectively.

AlterSage is an online marketing company based in Cape Town, South Africa. AlterSage specialises in creating and implementing bespoke online strategies for a range of clients from around the world. Services include social media marketing, pay per click campaign management and search engine optimisation.


An Introduction to International Trade

The primary reason most companies trade internationally is to reduce risk, if you think of the old adage of not putting all your eggs in one basket, the same applies to the business world and international trade, if you’ve got a stable market here in the UK it might prove prudent to look at how you can grow your business internationally.

The first step you would take when looking into international trading would be examining your business here in the UK, this would make it easier to start looking for a market internationally that might compliment your own. It’s simply a case of thorough research

One of the main factors to take into consideration when trading internationally is finance; this is again going to involve thorough research. Whichever country or countries you choose to trade with you will need a very comprehensive knowledge of their currency both in relation to your own currency and the value of your product or service. One of the more secure ways to trade internationally is with letters of credit, these are a banking instruments you use to insure that you’re paid, if you have a letter of credit against any transaction you are guaranteed to get the money as long as you adhere to a set of criteria that you agree with your customer at the outset.

When it comes to international trade, you should always make sure the export price has been carefully researched and you understand the different elements of that price, this means your product or service is very unlikely to be marketed at the same price you might charge in the UK. There are several factors you’ll need to take into consideration before concluding a price you wish to market your product or service at. The first is how much it might cost you to collect and convert any foreign currency. Secondly you’ll need to make sure all your logistics are covered and thirdly, you will have to do some form of market research too and this cost will also need to be covered in some shape or form. These are just three very generic points and you may come across many more especially when you start to deal with the specifics of individual countries.

Preferential trade agreements are agreements set up by trading blocks, an example of a trading block would be the European union as it’s a block of countries that work and trade together and have agreements. Basically, it means it’s easier to do business with some countries than it is with others.

European Union regulations have dramatically changed the very nature of international trade. In terms of distribution, you are no longer allowed to sell exclusively in any specific market, you can’t be restricted, but your marketing activities can be. As far as agents are concerned, they actually have employment rights and you have to be very careful about how you appoint them. When it comes to international trade it would advisable to research very thoroughly before you signed anything.

It’s not just the business world which you’ll need to research when trading internationally, you must also understand local customs, cultures and etiquette too. One of the nicest things you can do is actually be observant of the business etiquette you’re looking at. For example if you were to spend a period of time working with the Japanese, you would learn they are not very keen on hard sell, you’d also learn they have a tendency to nod their head and say yes a lot as you’re talking, this doesn’t necessary mean they’re agreeing with you but that they understand what you.

Punctuality can also be a major area of importance with international trade, culturally we tend to vary in the way we treat our meetings, in the UK we like to be punctual and we try very hard to keep our meetings down to about an hour, if you went over to Italy, they’re not so punctual and it’s not an offence not to be punctual. In Germany it’s a huge offence to be late for a meeting, some Germans will not see you if you’re more than ten minutes late. These things need to be looked at and planned into any visit you make.

International trade can be a very complex but very rewarding business venture. As with all business ventures, thorough research and due diligence is essential. There are plenty of organisations out there which are designed to help you, whether it’s step-by-step assistance you need or just a general nudge in the right direction.

Business Link is there to offer free business advice and support on almost any topic; GuruOnline has over 50 exclusive online videos from Business Link offering free international trade advice on a whole host of topics from incoterms to international marketing to managing risk to operational requirements.


Social Media For Small Business Local DFW

With 2010 finally here and staring us in the face, every small business needs to acknowledge the 100 pound elephant in the room, and his name is social media.  Many Small Businesses have the same questions circling in their heads…”how do we deal with social media, what are our social media strategies and is it right for my business? Should we ignore it and hope it goes away like another passing fad like Cherry Coke or Members Only jackets?”  It’s time for small business to start utilizing social media’s benefits and incorporate it into their daily lives as a small business public relations strategy. Social media is exactly what the small business needs. The small businesses who embrace social media first will be the ones who have an advantage over their competition 5 years down the road.

How is Social Media going to benefit my business?

Small businesses would love to have the public relations team that most Fortune 500 companies have. What small businesses don’t realize is that social media has a lot of the same benefits as a high retainer Advertising agency/PR firm. Social media provides an outlet for small businesses to transmit and share news, events, press releases, success stories, and other business-related information in real-time.

Some of the core benefits are:

Real-time communication to your customers Instant feedback on a product/service Raising brand awareness Lead Generation Drive website traffic Virtual focus groups Search engine optimization links

Outline your objectives

Social media websites are a dime a dozen. There seems to be a new social media website popping up every day. Some websites are more niche specific while others are broader.  Choosing the right social media platform to spend your valuable time can be frustrating. Before small businesses start subscribing to the thousands of social media websites out there, they first need to outline what their goals are for a social media strategy. Most objectives align with social media’s core benefits but some small businesses look for different goals.

Some common small business social media goals include:

Brand perception Competitive analysis Customer Service / Support Networking Everyone else is doing it

Once a small business outlines its objectives, it can then decide which social media platform is right for their business.

Which social media websites are the best for my business?

Some of the more popular social media websites are Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, LinkedIn, Flickr, Digg, and many others. LinkedIn is great for networking while Digg is great for bookmarking websites you find interesting on the Internet. Twitter is great for announcing what your company is working on and Flickr is great at sharing recent corporate outing photographs. Anything that you would want to share with your customers, there is a social media website that will meet your needs.

One of the more commonly known social media websites is Facebook. And it recently made news that small businesses need to pay attention to. ComScore just released its November 2009 Media Metrix data, which shows an important milestone recently reached by Facebook, which is 100 million monthly U.S. visitors. Those numbers put Facebook in the same group as Google, Yahoo, and Microsoft websites when talking about website traffic volume.  That is a staggering metric that illustrates that social media is not a passing fad but rather a strategic public relations tool for the small business.

Time commitment

One school of thought in deciding which social media platform to spend your time promoting your company is to determine where your target demographic spends their social media time.  By default, most people/companies are either on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube or are starting to develop a strategy for creating their own web page. Time is valuable so choosing wisely is a critical element in launching an effective social media strategy. The more active you are within a social media community, the more you will get out of it. If a small business gets into the rhythm of posting and communicating within their social media websites on a daily basis then it becomes routine. The more your communicate and become a valuable member within a community, the greater the return on investment.

New Years Resolution

Start your 2010 Marketing Strategy on the right foot!  Small businesses need to incorporate social media into their marketing plan and measure their results.  I bet you find your original skepticism and preconceived notions on social media not to be true, and you will quickly see that sharing information in real-time is only going to benefit your business and its bottom line

You can see how you can use this information in the local DFW area.

Michael Delpierre is President and Chief Marketing Officer of Conversion Pipeline, a Washington D.C. area based Strategic Marketing Communications firm. For more information please visit: