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Social Media that Fits Your Partner Business

When the topic of social media comes up, the thought of having to blog, Tweet and keep multiple social sites up to date is overwhelming. But it's possible to start with small steps that can have a big impact over time. As we've discussed before, focus on one activity and do that consistently for the best payoffs for your time invested. Take the following examples.

Finding a Community with Twitter
Tiffany Ingargiola, director of Partner Alliances for New Horizons Computer Learning Centers in New Orleans, got started with Twitter as part of the 2009 New Orleans Worldwide Partner Conference planning committee. Ingargiola remembers, "That was the year that businesses started to understand that social media could impact the way we communicate."

Ingargiola said, "Even then, I didn't believe it until after WPC was over and I started to tap into the New Orleans market. All of a sudden I found there were New Orleans people talking to each other. They were influencers -- people that we were doing business with. They would push out my messaging, so I saw that what I was doing had a viral effect. That's when I became a believer."

"I'm a strong believer that businesses that have a real person representing them on the front end are the ones that will be successful with social media. It's about relationships," Ingargiola said. It's also about what you are good at -- so you can stick with it. I am better at 140 characters and couldn't be a blogger."

Commitment to Fresh Blog Content
If blogging is your social outlet of choice, consistent fresh content is the key to results. It's a challenging commitment, but if managed and rewarded well, a blog can give you a significant boost in organic search results and Web traffic.

Erin Eschen, online and social media marketing manager for Perficient, a National System Integrator partner headquartered in Missouri, said, "Blogs are the hub of our social media program. Our goal is to demonstrate thought leadership through our consultants' expertise. Most of our bloggers write their posts because they love it."

To keep bloggers motivated, Perficient also offers cash incentive programs based on milestones, like the most traffic to a post. Eschen said, "My bloggers are people who don't report to me so I give them constant feedback to recognize their success. We share the numbers of post visitors with the writers and they compete in a friendly way to write posts that will attract readers. It's important to share those numbers."

Find a Social Champion To Lead the Way
Common to all partners gaining momentum with social media is the value of those employees who want to champion and own social media. Since consistency is the foundation of relationships built through social communities, a committed employee can be your ticket to success. Find that person in your organization and support their efforts.

How are you approaching social media? Comment below or send me a note so we can share the knowledge.

Posted by Barb Levisay on August 09, 2011


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