Monday, January 13, 2014

Social Media in Business Building

by Pete and Dora Zdanis

Building a network marketing business is simple, but not necessarily easy.

The basic steps in the process to successfully build a network marketing organization haven’t changed from the beginning, and they never will.

Network marketing is simply a business of making contact with others, learning what their concerns and needs are, and then sharing information with them about how your products or opportunity might be the solution for their concerns and needs. When people express an interest in what you share with them, the next steps are to schedule an appropriate presentation and then conclude with closing the sale or enrollment.

The difficult part comes in learning when, and how, to perform those basic steps.

Social media provides an excellent way to accomplish these steps with a large number of people, whether they live across the street, across the country or around the world, on a 24-7 basis.

Think of social media as a virtual “cocktail party” where you have the opportunity to get to know people and find out what is important to them, while also sharing information about yourself which allows others to get to know and, hopefully, like you as someone they respect.

Our social media strategy is to establish a friendly, yet professional, presence on various social media, (Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+ and our blogs).

We share information about ourselves so that people can learn more about who we are and can feel that they know us as people instead of just an online user name. We also post information and ideas (not necessarily related to our business) that others can find to be of interest or benefit to them so that they think of us as a caring, helpful resource that they can be comfortable in communicating with.

As a result, we have had significant success in introducing our products and business plan to contacts we have made on social media sites, which have resulted in retail sales, customer enrollments and business sponsorships.
As an example, we recently received a phone call from someone we didn’t previously know, who told us that they wanted to sign up with us as a Distributor Associate with a ProPack, the most expensive enrollment pack we offer. During the enrollment process, we asked them how they came to contact us. Their response was “In my research of network marketing and your company, I kept seeing both of you all over social media, liked what you had to say, and decided that you were the kind of people I would like to work with.”

Some “Dos and Don’ts”

You should never show up in a social media community and immediately start soliciting for customers or business partners. Rather, your goal should be to become a good citizen in your the social media communities.

While we certainly make it clear what business we are in by including that information in background and biographical sections of our social media profiles, we are very careful not to post blatant advertising and solicitations in our messages. Such “spamming” is a turn-off to most people, and will severely damage your credibility quickly. Just as you would not walk up to a complete stranger on the street and ask them to sign up with you in your business, you should never show up in a social media community and immediately start soliciting for customers or business partners.

Over the years, our company has gained significant credibility in both the nutritional and financial worlds, with more and more accolades coming in on a regular basis. Eventually, our social media contacts are going to come across these accolades, and one of our goals is to capitalize on this credibility by making sure that as many people as possible think of us whenever they think of our company.

We use social media services as just one of many tools in our business building tool box, and do not rely on them as a primary business building method. As with any other business building method, becoming effective with social media involves a learning curve. Start slowly by setting up your online presence and exploring the services you are using. Become familiar with all of their features and policies so that you can become a good citizen of your social media communities.

It is also important for you to have an online presence separate and apart from social media sites. A good example would be a company provided web hosting site. Make sure that your web hosting site is as professional, attractive and interesting as possible. When a social media contact asks you for more information about your company, you will then have a place to send them, and information to share, prior to speaking with them on the phone or in person.

A word of caution: Do not let social media become a time waster which can detract from your life and other productive business building activities. Set aside a specific amount of time every day or week to devote to your social media business activities, and stick to that limit while making sure the time you spend on social media is moving you toward your business goals.  

Most of all, be patient.

It takes time to develop a group of friends and followers on social media sites, but it will definitely pay off over the long term.  

Pete and Dora Zdanis

© 2014 – Total Performance Organization

“Expect More – And never be disappointed.” ® - All Rights Reserved

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