Stacy Jackson is a founding partner at Jackson Marketing, Inc., a marketing firm located in Dunedin, Florida. In addition to her work at Jackson Marketing, Stacy is a co-host of The B2B Mix Show podcast. You can follow her on Twitter at @stacy_jax and connect with her on LinkedIn (linkedin.com/in/stacyjax).

Online marketing is one of the coolest things that has happened for small business.  It levels the playing field for the savvy small guys.  They can create blogs posts, case studies, infographics, videos, and more.  Then the magic of social media marketing is applied . . . .

Abracadabra! “We’re viral!”

But maybe viral for you looks more like the quarantine ghost town in Outbreak?  Nobody’s showing up.  It’s dead out there on your site.

Why?  ‘Cuz you didn’t properly care for your social media beast.

Think of social media as a domesticated work animal — like a horse, let’s say.  The horse will get you from point A to point B if you take care of it.  You exercise it, you care for it, and you feed it all the horsey-goodness it needs to keep him functioning.  I’m not going to try to carry this metaphor any further because I have no idea about the care and maintenance of a horse.  However, I do know a little something about taking care of your social media beast.

Proper Care and Maintenance of the Social Media Beast

  • Feed it regularly — if you want social media presence to thrive you should feed it regularly.  If it starves, it’s not going to take visitors from point A (the profile) to point B (your site).  Feed it a fresh supply of well-written blog posts, infographics, links, and more.
  • Ensure it has a well-balanced diet — just like any living being, there’s the possibility for too much of a good thing — or a bad thing, for that matter — when formulating your social media beast’s well-balanced diet.  Think of too much self promotion as the equivalent of too many sugar cubes.
  • Give it proper handlers — a horse with a bad handler may buck and never let you ride it.  Or worse, it may trample all over you.  So it goes with a mishandled social media efforts.  Make sure you have the right people with the proper temperament, knowledge of your business, and ability to communicate clearly.  It’s your responsibility to choose the right people if you aren’t doing it yourself.  It’s up to you to ensure they are properly trained to handle your social media beast.

Maybe you aren’t ready for caring for and handling the social media beast.  It’s a lot of work and if you are a small business owner, your time is already spread thin.  Consider trusting a social media firm if you find yourself needing help!  Make sure they are up to visitor herding, word wrangling, and caring for your social media beast.

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