Social Media Essential to Small Business

You Can Have A Terrible Location, As Long As You Have Great Social Media

As a follow-up to my last post, “The End Of Location, Location, Location,” the corollary is that small business people must give up any struggle they have against privacy on their business’s social networks’ success. Let me give you an example.

Let’s call her Amy, a small business person who runs a little business on Etsy selling coffee cup sleeves. While she sells a few based on referrals via Etsy, she hasn’t really sold a lot. One of the reasons she doesn’t is that she is a very private person and does not participate much in social networking. She goes onto Facebook now and then and posts something personal – but rarely – has a Twitter account, maybe nine friends, and has sent out about as many tweets. I get it – she’s a private person and doesn’t want too many people to know about her. But at the same time, they aren’t going to find out about her business either – are they? No social media, no sales.

It reminds me of a certain Frasier episode where the brothers decide to open up a restaurant. They throw out ideas to make it sound more exclusive, including the obviously dumb idea of having an unlisted phone number. To which their dad quips, “Why not post a sniper on the roof next door and pick off your customers before they enter?”

Today, a vibrant, personalized social media networking presence is essential. If you are concerned about privacy, then create a character – it doesn’t need to be you – and be that person through that character. However, if you are taking this route, don’t be found out – consumers today live for authenticity and will feel cheated if there is no “Tabitha” with who they’ve been conversing.

The easiest thing to do is just to put yourself out there – I’ve seen many successful small businesses flourish and grow much faster when the consumers can sense and see the soul of the person behind the business right out there on social media.

One of my favorite examples is Michelle Tam over at NomNomPaleo. Check out her site and see how she seemingly effortlessly integrated her personality into her business and rocketed her to the internet and paleo stardom.