Is Social Media a ‘Time Waster’ For You?

If you are a home stager, redesigner, decorator, professional organizer or feng shui consultant it’s most likely that you are doing most of your on-line marketing yourself or you may have hired someone to do it for you. Your on-line marketing starts with your website, email campaigns and connects with your social media sites like Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.

Since marketing is all about ‘educating & informing your ideal client’ it makes sense that you can do this through social media. Here are a few quick facts about social media:

  • Facebook has over 750 million users – 86% of Canadians use Facebook and 50% of Canadians are on social network sites
  • Almost 2/3 of the social media users in Canada are 35 – 54 years old and 40% of people over 55 are actively using social media
  • 50% of small business owners reported gaining new customers through social media – notably Facebook and LinkedIn
  • The most popular sites in North America for small business are Facebook, LinkedIn, You Tube and Twitter

In your business the purpose of using social media is to increase your brand awareness so that you can get more traffic to your website. By getting more traffic to your website you have more leads, and more leads take you to more sales. Social media works because it:

  1. Connects you with your ideal client – once people like what they are reading/seeing (photos and videos get read more) they will sign up to be a follower of your posts – they can also let their followers know about you
  2. Creates more visibility for your brand for brand recognition – your image i.e. logo, keywords, tag lines, etc, need to reflect a consistent brand so your audience will recognize and remember you quickly
  3. Promotes your business – by you supplying interesting content of value to your audience they will keep coming back for more. Actual promotions or discounts or free offers can work well as long as they are not too salesy

But I admit it can be a ‘time waster’ if you don’t set some boundaries and goals around the amount of time you are blogging, posting, writing or responding to discussions that interest you. Experts say 15 minutes a day is great for staying connected and visible. Many businesses automate their postings through Hoot Suite or Ping so that they just write one post and it automatically goes to their other sites. The only cost to doing your posts, blogs, etc is your time and if you find that is too valuable you can hire a copywriter. Or take time to write out a month’s worth of blogs or posts and schedule them to go out through the month. This can cut down on your daily time.

You can also pay for advertising on many social media sites like Facebook and of course the world of Google provides opportunity for recognition with good SEO work as well as paying for ads.

The question to ask yourself is which social media sites will you spend time on to increase your revenues – and is this your goal? You can measure your success (view traffic and conversions) by using many of the tools on these sites and many are free. SEO work of course is another one of your measuring tools that you can hire someone for or do yourself.

So what does all of this mean to you? If you think social media is a ‘time waster’ then I would really suggest that you revisit who your ideal client is and find out which social media sites they hang out on. You might just enjoy it!

Colleen McClure
Proud owner of PRES Staging® and expert home stager. I naturally started drawing interiors when I was very young. I see finished projects completed in my minds-eye as the client explains to me how they would love to see their space created. I then can draw sketches quickly to produce this vision right then and there with the client. My creative talents led me to full time work as a career counsellor working with people, designing workshops, facilitating groups when the economy did not support the luxury of home improvements. My many talents in this field was a happy marriage to own PRES the Professional Real Estate Staging Centre. Helping others start and run their own home décor businesses for redesign and staging, learning design principals and building confidence brings me great joy and passion. Working with people and helping them make confident decisions comes easy to me.