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Using ethical social media to build your business

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While the use of social media to build a business, has grown in popularity, so has the unethical practices that sometimes surround it. Business owners are beginning to see more and more, the many benefits and advantages o using this type of marketing. Using social media networking allows businesses to reach out to consumers that may have been overlooked by more traditional marketing methods.

Consumers are turning in ever greater numbers to the internet before they make a purchase, so if your company is not online, you are missing out on unlimited potential. In addition, to being an effective way to market and build your business, social media networking is technology’s way of capitalizing on word of mouth business. Within a few seconds you can send your marketing message out to thousands of follower, who can then in turn help to pass it on. However, the bottom line remains that this must occur in an ethical fashion in order to be effective and avoid damaging the reputation of your business. Here is what you need to know about using ethical social media to build your business-
• Make sure that your marketing messages are always credible, reliable and most importantly truthful-An integral part of making this type of marketing work, is gaining the trust of your potential customers. You must be able to move past the natural skepticism of today’s tech savvy consumers and show them that you can offer something of value. If you fail to do this, most likely they will simply block you on their social media sites, and ignore your message.
• Offer something of value-If you are just interested in using social media networking to sell your product or service, then the chances are low that you will be successful. Consumers are looking to be provided with something of value. There are a number of different ways that you can do this. First and foremost, you need to make sure that whatever you post is not just interesting to your potential customer, but shows them that you can offer them the solution to their needs or wants. Today’s customers want to know that the companies they spend their money with, are taking them seriously and appreciating it.
• Position yourself as the expert-You want to be able to back up what you say. Offering customer referrals and recommendations is a great way to do this. Studies show that many customers do not purchase, from a company, until they have checked out the referrals and recommendations that are posted online. However, it is imperative that you only post actual customer referrals and recommendations. You should never allow employees or anyone else who is not an actual customer to post a review. Not only can this damage your creditability, it can open you up to serious legal problems.
• Give an incentive to follow you-Many businesses are finding that they can gain the interest of their target market by offering incentives. This can be done in the form of a coupon, discount code, or even a free sample. However, in order to remain ethical you need to make sure that whatever type of incentive you provide, your company is willing to back up. There is no faster way to damage your business, then to offer the explanation that you are not longer accepting the coupon, or discount or have run out of the free sample. You will quickly find that your customers, who were interested, will go else where. Backing up what you offer will only insure the credibility of your business, and help your customers to se you as ethical.

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