Many times, businesses are so focused on building their own social media and marketing avenues that they forget the cardinal rule of safety in numbers. Whether your company is one company “going it alone” or part of larger collection of merchants like shopping center, there is strength in numbers. Sometimes, small business owners believe that they have to compete with everyone else around them in the marketplace. In truth, it is easy to share your FREE real estate of social media with other businesses that flatter your good and services.
Some easy ways to share your social space with business partners include:
- Shout Out on #Twitter – A good Twitter following can be an asset to any company that wants to broadcast news and PR about their company. Build the marketing machine by exchanging promotions, deals, and news to tweet. Twitter can also be an excellent platform to share news and press about business partners with #hashtags, photos, and links.
- Online Reviews Sites – Statistics show that people are 23% more inclined to do business with companies that have positive reviews. Translation? Online reviews on sites like Yelp are gold for companies trying to get a leg up on the competition. Take the opportunity to exchange positive reviews on sites like Yelp and Google.
- Post on Facebook –Posting a positive comment, reviews, and promotions about a partner on your Facebook with good #hashtags, links, and images shares your free social space.
- Share a Resource, Discount Coupon, or Expertise – Everyone likes a good discount or promotion. If you have an excellent partner, then sharing it with your audience shows that you are on their side and gives you fresh content. In fact, creating a special promotion just for your customers for their services – and vice versa of course – gives everyone a win/win deal.
- Record a Testimonial for YouTube – If a picture is worth a thousand words, then video is worth tons more! Whether you record a video or ask them for a video of a testimonial, product, or se3rvice, it gives each of you good content to share. It does not have to be a professional video with a production crew, but it should be professional.
- Get Pinterested in Your Partners – Pinterest is the fastest growing social media in the female demographic. If your partners are in this demographic (and who is not? ), sharing an image, links, and #hashtag posts on Pinterst can get others interested in their company as well as yours. It is a good idea to have a board for nothing but partners.
- Feature on Blog – The nice thing about a blog is that you get lots of space to really do a good job. If you are not a great writer, then ask the company to write their own highlight footage. Either way, pass the piece by the company to make sure all details are accurate. With some great keywords and images with links, this blog post could be used in your newsletters, social media, and search engine rankings that lasts for years to come.
- Share the Good News – If your company has a monthly newsletter (and you should!), profiling a business partner encourages others to strive to be featured in your newsletters. Moreover, it can show your email list that you are interested by sending them exclusive partnership discounts or deals they might not get otherwise. The exposure could bring new customers to each business.
Bonus: Linkedin is Plugged In – Linkedin is the perfect social media to recommend your business partners because there are mounds of potential customers and it is set up for reviews. By adding those reviews to your Linkedin company page or theirs, your groups, and your status feed, you can really help them get the word out as they help you.
The most important thing about creating a good social media partnership is making sure everyone knows what to expect and defines how they will share each other’s information. Partnership means that each of you is doing your part to help the other cross market. If there is a business not willing to invest the same effort, then move on to others.
No matter what size or collection of businesses your business currently resides – to quote the Beatles – you can all “get by with a little help from your friends.” More to the point, you can own the market by surrounding your customers with your brand on social media with the right connections.
Unlike a collection of merchants, small businesses might have to connect directly with other businesses, but the connections can create a strong link between customers looking for local services and merchants. Either way, the effort of coordinating a social media marketing effort between brands and companies in close proximity can really own a local marketplace.