Network marketing has received a bad name in recent years, mostly because of the confusion with network marketing and multi-level marketing – or MLM for short-. In a nutshell, multi-level marketing is a business model where you pay a commission to others to sell your products.
Unfortunately, too many businesses used this as a chance to promise people to get rich by recruiting others. As a result, the focus moved from selling products to recruiting, which in many instances made it illegal. But, there is another type of network marketing that is now beginning to be called “Social Network Marketing”. So, should you use network marketing for your small business?
Which Type of Network Marketing Are We Discussing?
The first question to ask is, “Which type of network marketing are you considering?” If you are considering the more recognized type of using others to sell your products for a commission then it can be successful when used properly.
What is Social Network Marketing?
In this article, we are focusing on the lesser known but more widely used form of network marketing. We are focusing on social network marketing. This is done using sites like Facebook, Twitter, and many other social media sites. Yes, these are for more than just keeping up with old friends. They also can provide a great way to stay in touch with potential, current, and previous customers. They also can help you build the brand of your small business.
Social Network Marketing Requires Planning
The problem for many small businesses is that social network marketing can require a large amount of time. Social network marketing may seem very easy. All you need is your cell phone, right? Install apps for a few social media sites and start posting updates. At best, this unplanned approach will yield few results. At worst, it can actually damage your brand. Social network marketing requires a marketing plan like any other marketing endeavor.
Successful Social Network Marketing is More Than Just a Business Page
Many businesses have tried to break into social network marketing by adding a business page to the small business owner’s personal account. Multiple employees were then granted access to the page to provide updates. Some of these employees were not directly involved in either sales or marketing for the small business. This created a large amount of posts but very few that offered little value to customers. The large amount of posts simply turned customers off.
Identify Your Network Marketing Goal
The first step to properly use social network marketing is to identify your goal. Exactly what are you trying to accomplish by adding a social media present for your small business. Like any journey, if you don’t know where you are trying to go then you are just spinning your wheels and getting nowhere.
Social Network Marketing Faux Pas to Watch Out For
Be careful of the discussions that your small business gets involved in. It may seem like a good idea to join into multiple discussions to get more exposure. But, you are not in control of the discussion. Your small business can easily get linked to a discussion that could actually hurt your image. A good rule of thumb is that if you wouldn’t get involved in the discussion offline then don’t do it online.
Network marketing of both kinds can be beneficial for any small business. Social network marketing can be a great tool. If used properly then it greatly increases the potential reach of your business and grows your small business’s brand. Identifying your goal and creating a plan will help ensure that you are successful with your small business’s social network marketing. These steps help you answer, “Should you use network marketing for your small business?”