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By Kim Nesmith

Promoting you brand, the social media way

Building and promoting a brand can be a tough job for a group, much less for one individual. How do you come up with a strategy that will spark the interests of people across the country or even the world? How can a brand be promoted to spark the interests of the right people at the right time? How can your brand be promoted to reach people nationally or even worldwide to increase your revenue and sales?

Recently, a friend told me the various reasons that he didn't have a website. One was that a website is time consuming, and the only way this husband-and-wife duo could keep it up to date would be to hire a third party to manage it. Therefore, this would cause another expenditure.

He then said that he uses Facebook and Instagram to promote their thriving embroidery business. He said his wife posted a picture of one of their products and instantly, they had messages from people across the country wanting their product. Within the hour, they were sold out and shipments were going out the very next day!

"Hmmm…social media," you may say. But what about it? How can social media be the just-right tool to market your brand? Many people are looking for ways to get their ideas across to the masses. If that "just right" person hears about your product or company, this is your way out! You know you will make it big. But how do you get your ideas across to the masses with social media? Here are a few tips to help you out.

Find a social media tool you are comfortable with.

If you're not comfortable with something, you're less likely to use it. If you like posting pictures of a product to Instagram, then stick with Instagram. If you like that comments can be better organized using Facebook, use Facebook. Whatever the tool, use it and stick with it.

Be consistent

I don't mean stick with Facebook and only Facebook forever. I mean get comfortable with your tool and use it consistently to promote your product or brand. So if customers, fans or followers begin to see you post daily around 7 p.m., then don't let them down. That one time when you don't post may be the time you miss a big break!

Timing is key

When beginning, monitor the times when you get the most traffic. Is it on a Monday at 7 a.m. or Wednesday at 6 p.m.? Most times, it depends on the product you are branding and your audience. For example, if you are promoting children's products, then your peak time of traffic may be between 5 and 6 a.m., when moms are getting up and preparing for the day. If you're a restaurant promoting a new special for the week, your peak time may be between 10:30 and 11 a.m. on Monday, in time for lunch. You may continue to blast that same special, in different ways, throughout the week, around the same time.

Building a brand using social media isn't something that can happen overnight. However, using social media to build your brand will help you reach those masses without the overhead costs that we used to incur with fliers, paid websites and open houses.

Most importantly, if you are comfortable with your tool, consistent and know the best times to post, then you are definitely on the road to brand-building success.

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