Reader Polls Archives - Klaxon

Reader Polls: Social Media Tools

I’ve been running a poll on this blog for a few months now asking the question ‘have you used any of the following social media tools to market your business?’.

The options and answers in order of popularity were:

•    Blog 67%
•    LinkedIn 55%
•    Facebook 48%
•    Other 39%
•    Del.icio.us 30%

What does this tell us?

First of all it confirms the significance of blogging as a key business communications tool. It’s interesting to see how many different types of business have jumped onto this marcoms tool, with everyone from CEOs to technical R+D experts, professional services firms and more. Working with small businesses I find blogging can provide a good platform for demonstrating your expertise, creating a feedback channel for customers, providing a place to foster conversation with existing and prospective customers and much more. If you want advice or some ideas for how to get a blog going for your business I recommend reading the BetterBusinessBlogging blog written by expert Mark White.

LinkedIn is another great resource but for networking. There is a lot of debate in the blogosphere as to how valuable LinkedIn really is, but for me there is no question of its potential. A good example is an old colleague of mine who recently contacted me through linkedIn. She had recently started up as a business operations consultant and was looking to expand her network and service offering. There may now be opportunities for us to work together either on the same clients, or through referring business opportunities. For ideas on how to get the most from LinkedIn, read Guy Kawasaki and LinkedIntelligence.

Facebook needs no introduction. It’s amazing how frequently I receive marketing messages from groups I belong to on Facebook, from music bands to clubs I belong to. One of my clients uses Facebook to manage its alumni and as a source of recruitment. There are no end to the possibilities. For bigger brands you might even consider advertising on Facebook.

The main point that came across from the survey is that people are using a mixture of different social media tools to market their business. A blog is a good start, but develop your LinkedIn profile in parallel and cross promote both platforms. Once you have a blog up and running and your LinkedIn profile is starting to grow, look at Twitter, or start social book marking with Delicious.

There is a good argument that you should have an objective in mind before you start with social networking and some goals in place in order that you can measure whether your efforts have been successful. I agree with this entirely for blogging but for the less strategic tactics, like LinkedIn, I would suggest just getting started and trying it for a month to see what you can achieve, you may just be surprised how many doors it can open and the costs are tiny – in most cases just your time.

What’s the next reader survey then?

Well it’s online now in the right hand sidebar and I would like your help to understand the impact of the global recession on your business..:

What tactics have you employed to combat the global recession?

> Increased marketing spend
> Made redundancies
> Cut costs
> Changed strategic direction
> Refinanced business
> Other

Latest Reader Poll Results

It’s been a while since I started the last reader poll and it’s time to close this one off. So I asked the question, ‘which of the following direct sales tactics is the most effective?’ with the following options: Face to face, Telesales, Direct mail, Email shots, Other.

It was no surprise to see face to face receive the lion’s share of the votes with 79% of all respondents choosing this option. This was followed in second place by telesales at 14%, which for me has always been a very challenging tactic and I’m sure I’m not alone.

What’s required to make the most from face to face sales then. Well, a good starting point is to ensure you have a set of well designed and branded business cards, much like you can pick up from Moo.com. I run a blogger networking event in London and these cards are an essential ingredient of everyone’s networking tool kit.

For a list of other great sales tips, I recommend heading over to the excellent salesadvicetraining.com blog.

Thanks to all those that took part in the reader poll. The next question is now live in the right hand side bar and asks simply, ‘have you started using any of the following social media tools for marketing your business – blog, Facebook, LinkedIn, Del.icio.us, Other?’

Latest Reader Poll Results

I’ve been so busy recently I clean forgot to wrap-up the most recent Reader Poll. So anyway, here goes. I asked:

Which of the following marketing methods have you found most useful for growing your small business?

From the long list of options provided, the two most popular answer by far were Websites and Networking.

I can only image those that have a website which promotes networking are on to a good thing. Facebook, MySpace, Bebo all seem to be doing pretty well I guess…

For the rest of us, it clearly indicates a need to get our online shop front in order. Whether it’s a static website, an e-shop, blog, vlog or other, it’s too important not to get this right. As far as networking goes it’s simple, get good or go home.

For the next reader poll, I would like you all to tell me:

Should PR companies approach bloggers differently to journalists?

Yes
No
Don’t know

Please answer on the poll in the far right hand side of the blog —>

Latest Reader Poll

If you’ve been here before you’ll know I always have a reader poll running on the right hand sidebar. Please feel free to spend 10 seconds taking part, you never know you might actually find the results quite interesting.

Today I’ve closed down the last poll for analysis and replaced it with another. The question is simply:

What blogging platform do you use?

As you will no doubt be aware there are a huge variety available, but which one is the best. I’m hoping this poll will start a conversation to find that out, but also more importantly a further discussion about which is the best platform for making money online.

Your help is as ever much appreciated!