The following blog entry was contributed by: Mr.Carmen Maugeri, President of Mauge, Inc.. Reach him at (773) 395-9919.
If you are going to do it, then YOU are going to have to do it. Social Media is not easy. It is very demanding. You have to be a very regimented person to maintain it and make it work. This almost always has to actually be done by the small business owner. It can be monitored and managed by others, but the content and decision making has to come from the one who knows.
This does not mean that you have to sit at your desk every moment of the day pumping information. What it means is that you have to set aside time every day to interact online with your customers. You have to create a timeline/schedule of promotions and events. The more organized you are the less time it will take. A great deal of this communication can be automated. Then all that is left on a daily basis is the occasional meme (check it out - a cool new internet word) and your direct customer responses.
Have an outsource company do all of your heavy lifting. Have them design and set up your complete social network – blog, LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter. Have them install the right tools so that you can input all of your promotional information in one weekly sitting.
This way the marketing engine keeps running. It is key that you do not over-market and it is key that you do not burn yourself out. If you are able to develop a balance and then time your communications properly your prospect base (facebook friends/likes) will both grow as well as become aware.
And for a small business, the key to marketing is developing (brand) awareness.