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How to Build a Strong Social Media Network

If you’re a business-owner and are actively promoting your business online, you know how important it is to not only have a group of followers, but to have a network of the RIGHT followers – that vital group of individuals who are interested in learning more about your business and are willing to engage with you. It is this very same group of individuals who may eventually become your clients or even brand-advocates. This is the ultimate goal.

If you’re looking to strengthen your online brand and build a loyal community of online followers, there are a few things that you want to keep in mind:

Know your audience – It’s imperative that you understand your client. Who are you speaking to? What are their fears and goals? What keeps them up at night? In order for you to swoop in and provide your business expertise, you first need to understand what problem your client is trying to solve. Once you have a better understanding of your target client, you will be able to speak to them in a relevant manner and provide them with the valuable solutions they are seeking to their problems.

Engage and build relationships – Just as you would at a networking event or during a face-to-face conversation, it’s important to actively engage with your audience online. Yes, it’s an online connection, but it’s still a relationship that needs to be nurtured, encouraged and strengthened on an ongoing basis. Your online audience needs to feel like they know you, like you and trust you enough to come to you with their needs. Be sure to engage consistently with your online audience in order to make them feel both heard and understood.

Provide value – Today, we are bombarded with online information and messaging – it’s just too much sometimes! This means it’s up to you cut through all that noise and provide your audience with useful content – content that is informational, educational, valuable and reliable. This makes you indispensable and that is exactly where you want to be – an indispensable expert in your field ready to provide real solutions to your clients’ problems.

Be proactive – Nope, you cannot expect your audience to come to you. Unfortunately, it just doesn’t work this way on social media. Instead, you are going to need to reach out and engage with your ideal audience where they are on social media. Find out where your audience is active on social media (rule #1 – know your audience) - you can do this in a variety of ways including on their profile, within similar interest groups or by searching relevant hashtags that they may be following. Meet your audience on their platforms, dazzle them with all of your interesting and useful content (don’t be afraid to get creative), then gently nudge them towards your online business platforms. Once your ideal audience is active with you on your social sites, it’s much easier to communicate, strengthen relationships and ultimately generate brand-affinity.

If you’re a business-owner and want to build your ideal online network of clients, try the four tips noted above and watch your social media presence grow. Be sure to stay consistent, stay informative and stay engaged with your audience online.