How social media can position you — and your business — as an expert

If you are not telling your company’s story on social media, you are missing a prime opportunity to get your message out on your terms.

While sending out a brochure can target one person — with no guarantee that person will even see it, let alone respond to it — sharing your message via social media can potentially reach millions, not only in your local market but across the globe, says Austin Love, an associate at Cushman & Wakefield | CRESCO Real Estate. And doing so doesn’t have to cost you anything more than a little time — and allows your creativity shine, making your company not just a provider of products or services but a business with a story to tell and a personality behind it.

“Social media gives you the opportunity to break down barriers, to show your personality outside your business,” says Love. “It allows clients and potential clients to know you on a more personal level than simply sending out a brochure. It allows you to grow a community around you and your business and build awareness and excitement, without asking for anything in return.”

Smart Business spoke with Love about how social media can help your business be more than a commodity and how to position yourself as an expert in your field — without breaking the bank.

Why is it important for business owners to engage with social media?

Social media lets you access an untapped market. It’s free to use — you only have to pay for your time. It allows you to access not only your local market but a global audience. It’s a way to push out your message and grow your brand.

Traditional forms of marketing are limited, and there is no guarantee your intended audience is going to see it, let alone engage with it. With social media, there is the potential for hundreds of millions of eyes. Someone might say they ‘only’ got 800 views, but that’s 800 people that otherwise might not have seen it and become aware of you. That opens up a world of new opportunities, building a community around your personal brand and letting people know you as you want to be known, not as what others are defining you as.

It also lets you share what is happening as it is happening, not waiting until it is already done.

How can a business owner get started?

You can hire a third party to show you the ropes, but there is likely already someone within your company with the expertise and the desire to launch a social media presence. Alternatively, this is something business owners can easily do themselves, even if they have no experience.

Everyone has a phone, and you can shoot, edit and post from your phone. You might be intimidated to start with, but it’s easy to learn and doesn’t take a lot of time.

It’s a critical tool to take control of your message, and the opportunities are endless. People are getting most of their news and entertainment from their phones and social media, and if you’re not playing in that game, you are absolutely behind the 8-ball. Social media allows you to use your creativity and storytelling to paint a picture that, on paper, is not as exciting. It creates engagement and gets customer input, as opposed to just pushing out information.

How can social media make a business stand out?

Social media is your secret sauce. Videos can position you as the expert. People are used to being advertised to, but videos on social media are not selling you anything. It’s advertising without advertising, with a storytelling aspect. It gives you the opportunity to break down barriers and show your personality, allowing your audience to know you on a more personal level and engage with your brand.

You are getting out your knowledge and sharing information about your business and how you provide value to the customer, bringing your personality into it and having fun with it. It allows you to provide value and create relationships with two-way engagement with your brand, giving people the opportunity to respond to your content and share with other potential clients.

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Austin Love



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