DoorA friend recently posted the quote on Facebook: “Old ways won’t open new doors.” The message inspired dozens of likes and comments, with many posting similar adages. It made me think about how he used social media to share this truism and the reactions that it caused. Social media for music retailers is one of the best ways to inspire interaction. It’s free, requires few technical skills, can reach a lot of people and helps to create recognition for your business.

It’s easy to find those who are more than happy to share their opinions about social media. They say: “It’s the new frontier”; “The great digital experiment”; “It’s about doing more, all of the time”; and “This is no longer a gimmick…it’s how people want to hear from you.” There’s a certain expectation by customers today that businesses must adopt social media and incorporate it into their marketing programs. If you want to reach prospects and customers online, then you need to use the same communication methods and tools that they’re using.

It makes sense to give them what they’re asking for! Studies show that most online shoppers research their purchases first. Smart retailers are stepping up to the challenge and using social media to provide details about their products and services.

Common sense must prevail for your social media activities. With all the positives social media brings, it’s equally important to be aware of the potential pitfalls. Remember that, whether you like it or not, you are being judged based on everything you post.

The immediacy of content views and the ability for customers to “embrace or disgrace” your actions can have lasting effects on your business. There is a growing need for businesses to follow certain DOs and DON’Ts to help them avoid any catastrophic situations. I’ve listed several for your consideration.

The DOs

Use a Strong Password – It goes without saying that strong security is crucial to your livelihood.

Make Your Social Media Customers Feel Special – Extend special deals to your social media audience before offering them to everyone else.

Be Teachable – As with any industry or profession, there are experts who set trends and lead by example. Follow them and learn all you can.

Become a Resource – Use social media for educating and informing customers about your products and services. Building confidence and trust will translate into sales.

Brevity is Important – Keep your posts short, and focus on making them easy to read and digest.

Pay Attention to Details – Double check your spelling and grammar. Poorly written content is an immediate turn-off.
A Picture is Worth a Thousand Words – Engage your customers by using pictures and video to build excitement.

Take Time to Reflect – Devote time each month to review what’s working and what isn’t to help propel your brand.

Integrate – Use your Web site, e-mail signature, business cards, etc., to make it easy for people to follow you.

Be Attentive – Social media is not a one-way street! It thrives on communication. Keep an eye on your posts and participate wherever possible.

Be Authentic – Never before have a medium and its participants been more skilled at smelling a rat and turning against the perpetrator.

All Together Now – Make sure that everything seen by prospects and customers lists how to connect with and follow your business.

Verify Everything – Double-check links, attachments, downloads and e-mails—anything sent to you—to ensure your safety.


The DON’Ts


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