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Advisory 2010-01-04

Power punch of social media

Social media is the new-age tool in advertising. It is considered as one of the best marketing strategies to establish a new brand or boost the sales of an established brand. Find out more about this unique but popular marketing technique

By Abha Garyali Sub Editor

A business cannot prosper till the time people are made aware about it. In most cases new franchisees have a tough time making people aware about their outlets. They struggle to find better and more effective means of advertising. The concept of marketing has undermarkegone a drastic change from advertising in newspapers to the present scenario of online advertising through various social websites.

Many franchisees still believe that the age old custom of advertising in newspapers is still the best choice for any struggling entrepreneur. This is doubtlessly true but apart from advertising in the traditional mediums, a franchisee should also look at the medium that attracts widest audiences. Living in the computer age, the social websites cater to all age-groups and sexes.

A small business entity can be transformed into a successful business with the power of online marketing. The most prominent websites which are frequently visited are Linkedin, Facebook, Twitter and advertising your outlet through these websites can make your outlet more visible to prospective buyers or clients searching for related businesses.

However these social websites may not prove to be so fruitful if not used properly. Handling the social websites can be a daunting task for an entrepreneur who can not spare enough time from his busy schedule.  Below given are few guidelines for beneficial usage of these social websites:

Setting targets: Firstly as a franchisee, you need to set your goals. Your targets should be well defined and achievable. Try to focus on only one or two social websites at a time. Select the websites which will assist you in reaching the goals quickly. Having no idea about the targets will make it harder to select the websites.

Professional profile: While promoting your company through various social websites, make sure you do not deviate from the professional aspect. Make your products or services appealing so that audiences get attracted to it. Your company's profile should be attractive and in sync with the latest trends.

Maintaining homepage: a franchisee must keep in mind to regularly update his company’s profile. No one would prefer to buy anything from a store that does not offer novel products or concepts.  If the viewers visit your homepage daily and find no movement, they might stop visiting your profile and outlet. On the other hand a profile with a lot of activity, new members joining, new comments, different photographs attracts and impresses the visitors.

Delegating responsibilities: As mentioned above, the franchisees have to wear many hats and fulfil many tasks. Creating profiles and updating them on the social websites is a time consuming process and maybe the franchisee is not able to do so regularly. It is advised to designate a social media manager to maintain the profiles on different websites. The assigned person should be fully engaged in this process to make maximum profits through this medium. Another option could be hiring online consulting companies which specialises in the website work.

To conclude it can be said that these social websites may be a boon to the franchisees but they have to be used carefully. Feeling overwhelmed by making your presence on the websites and seeing no improvement in the outlet in the initial stages may make a franchisee withdraw. It should be remembered that success comes after hard work. Working on the websites requires diligence and efforts on the part of the franchisees as well as the social managers.

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