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Thursday, October 8, 2009

How to Use Social Media to Find Prospects... Or Sell a House...

from Serena Ehrlich





(Serena Ehrlich, SVP Social Media at Startup Army, gives a quick primer on using social media to promote your startup. This article was originally posted on the firm's blog.)

I recently answered this question on LinkedIn and thought it might be a good time to share some information on how to use social media to find clients, prospects or to even sell a house.

Question from LinkedIN:

How can professional speakers use social media to find prospects?

I’m doing an upcoming presentation to a group of professional speakers on how they can use social media (especially LinkedIn, Twitter, and Blogging) to build reputation and reach prospects.

Any suggestions on what a professional speaker should be doing with these tools to reach prospects? Reaching meeting planners? People searching for speakers on particular topics?

Alternatively, any information on how meeting planners and others search for professional speakers?

ANSWER:

There are lots of ways to use social media to build a reputation and to reach prospects!

  • Create your online personality: Create a Google profile to ensure people can easily find you within Google seach results. Extend your personal brand and create accounts on Twitter, LinkedIN, Delicious and more.
  • Create short videos of your presentations. Set up accounts on YouTube and Mixx (try Tubemogul.com) and use these videos to highlight the best of your presentations
  • Create a commercial for yourself, put on above sites
  • Tape record your presentations and make them available via podcast
  • If you decide to blog, commit to a long-term plan, outsource blog writing to key members of your senior management to provide a more-rounded view of their company
  • Share all of the above on Twitter
  • Update your LinkedIN profiles with links back to your blogs, videos and more
  • Answer questions in LinkedIN to enhance your professional reputation
  • Set up a search for “conferences” and your town name. Whenever an event is coming to your city, reach out to the organizers and ASK if you can speak
  • Whenever you speak, invite your audience to join the discussions online by following your Twitter feed
  • Determine who your prospects are, see if you are connected to any of them via LinkedIn.
  • Follow your prospects on Twitter – it is a great way to get involved in the conversation, and a great way to see what is important to them
  • Set up RSS feeds to send you relevant industry info, share this info on all streams to show your professionally savviness

There are so many ways to establish and build your business online. In fact, when I worked for Docstoc, I created a variety of documents designed to help folks increase visibilty to their key audiences including:

Serena Ehrlich is SVP Social Media at Startup Army, a firm providing advice and help to new companies. Serena serves as chairman of the interim Social Media Club Board of Directors as well as a Senior Advisor for the international YoungPRPros, and is an 8-year Board Member for the National Investor Relations Institute (NIRI), and has previously worked at Business Wire. She can be found on Twitter (@serena) and any other social platform worth talking about.


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