Tips for the Women in Business Leadership Group

women in Business Leadership GroupIt was my pleasure to speak at this Chamber of Commerce event. Below are the tips I shared as well as live links to some tools you will find useful. Thank you!

Why Mindful Social Marketing?
Marketing online through social media is not just about selling stuff.
It’s not about being on every social network or drowning your prospects in sales pitches.
Mindful social marketing is about building relationships and community around the problem you solve and defining your business as a place where people can find someone who has compassion for the problem they have and wants to serve them to the best of your ability. It’s about trust, reputation and loyalty.

If you’re a marketer who feels overwhelmed by all the new roles, tools and strategies getting thrown at you, mindful business practices help you to be more focused, present, effective, happy at your job and truly reach people, not targets.

What is mindfulness anyway?
Mindfulness is simply paying attention to this moment, on purpose and without judgment. This state of being allows us to see things we might miss when we are distracted. It allows us to truly hear what a client is needing and to help them as effectively as possible.

Listen with intent
If you use social media at all you know there is a huge amount of noise happening all the time and most of it probably doesn’t apply to you or your business. Using social listening tools (http://janetfouts.com/listen/ ) allows you to find relevant questions and problems that you can help with. Use that knowledge to share information generously and build relationships.  Use what you’ve learned about the needs of your prospects to create relevant social posts and ask thoughtful questions focusing on what really matters to them.

Train your attention on what really matters
Taking a mindful approach to all that noise means filtering out distractions and choosing social networks that really work for you. If you search and don’t find relevant information from potential customers? This particular network may be a waste of your time. Focus where the fish are.

Build advocacy
Using your listening tools and your own insights into the business you can create relationships with customers by commenting, sharing and talking to them. Look for businesses whose goals align with yours. If you sell cut flowers for a living, support wedding venues, flower growers, designers and other businesses who compliment what you do. Get creative. Don’t forget that your own employees and contractors can help too and encourage them to share what they love about the work they do.

Curate content
One of the biggest un-necessary time sucks about social media is the belief that all the content has to be created by you. In fact, curating content by finding things to share from news, complementary businesses, social media connections etc helps to support other people and to expand your reach by simply being helpful. In less than an hour a day you can have your chosen social networks loaded up with valuable content that people care about and share. Leaving you time to have actual conversations and maybe get some work done.

Plan to plan
A content calendar is a very valuable tool and makes it a lot easier to stay organized and not struggle to find something to say. If search engine optimization matters to you (it should) then thinking about keywords you want to consistently use and then planning around them will help with organic SEO big time. Lay out a strategy for the next 4-6 months around your specific plans and then create a monthly calendar with proposed topics and keywords. Once a month or so sit down and plan out what you’re going to focus on. Schedule posts for key items and fill in the rest with curation. I use Feedly to organize news, blogs and interesting content to curate for my calendar. Give it a try. The free version is usually sufficient.

What to do next
These tips hit the key points in using social media. If you need help with your strategy or want to talk further? Send me an email at janet@janetfouts.com or just give me a call: 415.990.3991 and let me know you heard me at the Women in Business Leadership Group and I’ll give you a 30-minute complimentary consultation. You can also find my book, Mindful Social Marketing with my other books at http://janetfouts.com/my-books/