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Social Media Marketing Basics for Entrepreneurs


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Most entrepreneurs today realize that Social Media Marketing is a requirement for success. However, the many options makes the process confusing. In this presentation, originally made to the Inventor's Association of Georgia in June 2009, IP Strategist (and "Recovering Patent Attorney") Jackie Hutter shares the things she learned during her successful journey into the world of Social Media Marketing. Said a person who saw the presentation: " I've never seen it titrated down to such complete and simple terms/concepts before, especially the best use of one tool vs another."

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Social Media Marketing Basics for Entrepreneurs

  1. 1. SOCIAL MEDIA MARKETING: THE BASICS FOR ENTREPRENEURS Inventor’s Association of Georgia June 27, 2009 Jackie Hutter, MS, JD Chief IP Strategist The Hutter Group LLC & Patent Matchmaker Website 1: Website 2: Blog: Follow me on Twitter: @ipStrategist DJ JackieHutter
  2. 2. Question of the Day ◦ Why is an IP Lawyer Talking to Entrepreneurs About Social Media Marketing? ◦ My journey applicable to anyone who is: ◦ Entrepreneurial ◦ Curious/Adventurous ◦ Bootstrapping
  3. 3. My Journey into SM Marketing
  4. 4. A Non-Expert’s View of SM  There really are no experts today ◦ Evolving daily, new rules constantly ◦ Traditional marketing rules do not apply  SM is not about “eyeballs,” it is about relevant connections ◦ Who is looking for the information you are associated with?  Develop a relevant niche and stick with it ◦ Use same “persona” in multiple SM channels ◦ Creates credibility and makes you findable
  5. 5. Key Takeaway from My SM Marketing Journey  Success in is a process not an event ◦ But this is true for all marketing efforts  Not enough to just show up, you have to participate in your chosen niche ◦ More is more  My journey continues ◦ Wherever I am, I am not yet there
  6. 6. SM Marketing Program Basics  Would you rather hire someone to design and implement your program? ◦ Huge number of SM marketers available  Even if someone assists, you still will have to provide content ◦ Significant commitment required  Suggest starting slowly ◦ Watching others can help you find your way ◦ Wrong path can be hard to undo/time waste
  7. 7. Step 1: You Must Have a Website  Most people go to websites if interested in learning more about your business ◦ Even if you meet them in person ◦ Instant credibility killer if you do not have this!  Enables people to ◦ Find your business  Search engines crawl the web and index information ◦ Validate your expertise
  8. 8. Steps to Setting Up a Website  Pick a URL ◦ Goal is long-term viability and findability  You may need to change your business name! ◦ Try to get a .com name ◦ Should have no dashes, dots etc. ◦ Check availability and purchase  Establish a website with the URL ◦ “It ain’t Rocket Science!” ◦ Can hire someone  +: Easier, can be more professional looking  -: Expensive, need to keep paying for maintenance ◦ DIY  +: Several free or low-cost providers of easy to use website templates ,  +: Can do your own updates, maintenance  -: Takes time to learn, must exercise discipline in keeping up
  9. 9. Step 2: Set Up Google Alerts  Set up a Google Alerts for your name & things related to your business ◦ What and who is talking about you ◦  Also good for monitoring blogs that discuss subjects in which you are developing expert status  Ex: My Alerts 1x’s a day  Patent Strategy  Intellectual Property Strategy  Jackie Hutter  My blog:
  10. 10.  Blogs  Blog comments  LinkedIn  Twitter  Content Marketing ◦ Ezine articles ◦ JDSupra (for lawyers)  Facebook   Innovation Social Networks
  11. 11. Why So Many Options?  The key to success in Web 2.0 world is getting your name out there in your chosen niche ◦ Top listings in search engines ◦ Use same/similar content over and over in different locations to boost visibility  Tweak for use in various contexts  Goal is ubiquitousness
  12. 12. Blogs  Millions of blogs in the world today  Allows infinite segmentation  Goal is to find blog topic that others have not identified and that others would be interested in reading  Great opportunity to establish a presence on the web that can drive business to you ◦ Become a recognized expert/news aggregator in niche related to your entrepreneurial concept ◦ “Ft. Myers Beach”  Distinguish from advertising ◦ Like having content related to your business published on a regular basis
  13. 13. Blogs  My story:  Truly niche area of IP business strategy  “Expert” blog ◦ Takes me about 4 hours for each post  Sometimes more ◦ Ranked in searches as more substantive because I have original content  As opposed to aggregation  Not large readership, but high influence ◦ And likely buyers of my services  Biggest challenge with blog is time takes to write ◦ Can collaborate to lessen commitment ◦ Aggregation blogs take less time ◦ Note: found easier to start because I have been reading blogs for several years
  14. 14. Blog Comments  Commenting can be great way to enhance web presence ◦ Indexed on web and attributable to you if under your own name (or traceable alias) ◦ Crowd sourcing for journalists  Comments have to be substantive and relevant to your expertise  Can gain significant credibility as expert in chosen subject ◦ Ex: I was recently contacted by Business Week about a comment I made  Appeared on in April in “Game Changing Ideas” series  Perpetuates my Web-based reputation
  15. 15. LinkedIn  ◦ Over 8 million members ◦ Many people not on at all or have only a couple of connections  Provides single source of online visibility ◦ Continuous source of connection  Independent of current job  Resume/cv checker  More reliable when public?  Find collaborators/partners/suppliers  Join affinity groups
  16. 16. +/- of LinkedIn (IMHO) What I Like What I Don’t Like  Can find people easily  Has become crowded  Great source for virtual partners ◦ Specialness hard to extract  Central place to put info about me ◦ Lots of foreign users, especially in ◦ Business information networks ◦ Resume ◦ Automatically posts blog updates  No peer review  Can enhance reputation ◦ Not reputation based, promotion ◦ Answer questions based ◦ Presentations ◦ Answers often wrong, but no way ◦ “What am I doing” to call out  Can find collaborators for projects  Increasingly requires substantial ◦ “Everyone is a free agent” effort to extract value  Emerging high level jobs board ◦ Little niche opportunity ◦ Low cost source of employees more likely to move or work virtually ◦ Better for those with marketing professionals?
  17. 17. Twitter  “Microblog” ◦ All entries in 140 characters or less ◦ What’s going on in real time  More personal form of SM  Requires continuous updating ◦ Once a day at a minimum ◦ Multiple times a day better  Develop relationships with people based upon Tweets  Many 3rd party applications to make easier and more valuable to use
  18. 18. Twitter  Value Proposition for Entrepreneurs ◦ Can gain immediate expertise by asking a general question or sending a direct message  People very happy to give info  “Know anyone who . . .?” ◦ Focused niche information  Find content aggregators in your area of interest  Learn about issues your potential customers may be facing ◦ Meet potential customers and business associates who arguably are in a higher demographic group and more innovative than the general business population  Early adopters more likely to respond to new marketing techniques like Twitter ◦ Greater interaction likely leads to less isolation and better idea generation
  19. 19. Twitter  Can be confusing when starting ◦ Think of as “virtual watercooler”  IMO numbers not as important as content ◦ My “Twitter grade” very high even though I don’t have huge # of “followers”  Fact that people select you effectively makes Twitter peer reviewed  Selfpolicing  Keys to success ◦ Get Retweets ◦ Gain followers ◦ Make personal contacts ◦ Gain customers
  20. 20. Twitter  IMHO Twitter is the greatest source of personal marketing today ◦ “Networking on steroids” ◦ People connect with and recommend those whose name they recognize and trust  Lots of people in the Internet-related areas, but fewer in other niche areas ◦ Still time to stake a claim and gain followers, especially in niche area  Auxiliary benefits ◦ “Tweetups” ◦ Drive traffic to your blog ◦ Publicize news ◦ Learn about new tools to make work and life easier and less expensive ◦ Find like-minded people in far-flung places
  21. 21. Facebook  Place for people to ◦ Communicate ◦ Update ◦ Collaborate via groups  Still evolving into a product ◦ Likely to be very different product in a year  IMO, I look at as place to engage socially ◦ Wish to keep personal friends separate from business friends ◦ Ways do exist to wall off personal from business ◦ Might want to investigate because good for search engine rankings
  22. 22. Content Marketing  Communication with your actual and potential customers without pitching  Making them smarter about topics relevant to your product  Useful and entertaining info worthwhile on its own, but that might also be useful towards sale or subsequent action ◦ Ex: example of really good review of product  Best form is conversation
  23. 23. Content Marketing  Define a critical group of buyers ◦ Target audience  Determine what information they really need and how they want to receive it ◦ How do they need to be educated  Deliver that critical info to that core group of buyers in the way they want it ◦ Don’t pitch!  Continually measure how well you’re doing and adjust as you go ◦ Use market research to ensure proper targeting
  24. 24. Content Marketing  Sources ◦ Blogs ◦ Ezine Articles  Re-package content and put in article format ◦ Alltop: Digital Magazine rack ◦ Google Reader  Most RSS to Twitter for additional exposure  Free and paid options for most
  25. 25. Create Your Own Social Networking Site with  Puts new social networks in hands of anyone with a good idea ◦ Ex: Inventors Associations, Affinity Groups  Your social network can be for anything and anyone  Name your social network and choose a combination of features ◦ Photos, videos, forums, events, etc. from list of options  Customize your social network's appearance and launch  People who join your social network will automatically have a customizable profile page and will be able to message and friend each other ◦ Allows like-minded people to develop deep and personalized networks
  26. 26. Emerging Open Innovation Marketplaces  Historically, major corporations have not looked outside for ideas ◦ Would buy businesses with products, but not bare ideas whether patented or not ◦ Had own R&D departments ◦ “Not invented here”  Today, major corporations increasingly searching outside for innovations ◦ “Open Innovation” ◦ Still relatively few companies with attitude and infrastructure ◦ Sure to change in future as economy improves and effects of downsizing realized  Net result will be that companies will not have enough ideas to fill pipelines
  27. 27. Emerging Open Innovation Marketplaces  Corporations that today have Open Innovation infrastructures starting to post product and technology needs on sites ◦  Product centered ◦  Innovation centered with “rewards” listed  These ARE NOT invention submission companies ◦ Only companies pay to participate ◦ (You should not pay to have your idea listed) ◦ Some companies: P&G, Newell Rubbermaid  Untried new model is InventBay ◦ “First to view” ◦ Invest in new ideas if pass, will allow you to post on site ◦ “Shopping list” for ideas ◦ Unknown who uses today
  28. 28. Parting Thought  Yes, the Web 2.0 world is confusing and time consuming!  Don’t assume that tools you use today will be there in future ◦ Web is continually evolving  But if you don’t jump in, you can never be part of this world  Your reputation belongs to you, so best not to rely on others solely to develop and maintain your online reputation ◦ Ok, to hire a Web 2.0 marketer to assist you
  29. 29.  THANK YOU!