Posts Tagged ‘LinkedIn’

Credit card company American Express seemed to come out of nowhere in the past year, offering one social media program after another.

FacebookTwitterFoursquareYouTubeLinkedInGoogle+— it’s got them all covered, and even better, it stands for what its consumers want across all of the social platforms it’s on.

While American Express has seemed to pump a lot of life into its social strategy as of late, it has actually been on the scene since 2009, helping cardholders solve problems one tweet and wall post at a time.

We spoke with Leslie Berland, SVP of digital partnerships and development at American Express, for the backstory on AmEx’s social media strategy, mission and goals. Read on for what she had to say.

American Express joined the social media scene in 2009 with presences on Twitter and Facebook, aimed at providing customer service for cardholders.

A Customer Service Foundation

American Express joined the social media scene in 2009 with presences on Twitter and Facebook, aimed at providing customer service for cardholders.

American Express first made its appearance on Twitter with the @AskAmex handle, focused on servicing Cardmember and merchant questions and needs. Berland says that @AmericanExpress and the officialAmerican Express Facebook Page came soon after.

“Our mission is to be everywhere our Cardmembers and merchants are,” says Berland. “To engage with them, service them, deliver unique value that’s shareable and create seamless digital experiences that surprise and delight.”

Since the beginning, American Express has built its social strategy on service, and it continues to improve its implementation by taking in user feedback. “We spent a great deal of time listening to the community. The community interests and feedback defined our strategy,” says Berland.

AmEx has come a long way — with nearly 2.4 million Facebook fans and more than 348,000 followers on Twitter for the American Express U.S. pages alone. Its presences have also expanded internationally, and the brand now supports efforts on LinkedIn, Foursquare, YouTube and Google+, as well.

Couponless Deals Galore

American Express is the master of the couponless deal in the social media space.

With AmEx Sync, cardholders can enjoy exclusive merchant deals by syncing their cards with their Facebook, Twitter and Foursquare. No coupon is necessary, just the linkage and a qualifying purchase.

AmEx first launched Sync with Foursquare in June 2011. In July, it added Facebook in on the fun, launching its “Link, Like, Love” app — after linking an AmEx card, a user can then access deals based on brands that he or she “likes” on Facebook.

At SXSW 2012, AmEx stole the show, launching Sync for Twitter and offering up Jay-Z tickets for SXSWers that completed the sync. Partnering with the likes of Whole Foods, McDonald’s and Best Buy, AmEx announced that after linking an AmEx card to their Twitter accounts, cardholders can tweet strategic hashtags to load deals onto their cards. With the hashtag #AmexWholeFoods, for example, a cardholder receives a $20 statement credit when he or she purchases $75 or more at Whole Foods using his or her synced card.

Now with a full suite of couponless deals to offer up to consumers, American Express is flexing its social media muscles in all the right ways.

Rallying Small Businesses

AmEx’s social media strategy accommodates the needs of both consumers and merchants. While much of what we see is tailored for the customer experience, AmEx goes out of its way to reach merchants as well.

With its national Small Business Saturday initiative, AmEx uses traditional and digital channels to promoting the Shop Small Movement, which encourages consumers to shop at their favorite local businesses on Small Business Saturday, the Saturday in between Black Friday and Cyber Monday.

Berland says the program has been a success for the company. “In 2011, more than 2.7 million Facebook users ‘liked’ the Small Business Saturday Page –- more than doubling the 1.2 million Likes in 2010. Nearly195,000 tweets were sent in support of Small Business Saturday in November, many leveraging the hashtags #SmallBusinessSaturday and #SmallBizSat.”

In February of this year, Twitter partnered with AmEx to open up its self-serve advertising platform to AmEx cardholders. AmEx even offered up $100 in free advertising to the first 10,000 businesses to sign up.

And we can’t forget the Facebook makeover from last year — AmEx teamed up with Facebook to give five small businesses a Facebook makeover and $20,000 to grow their businesses, as part of its Small Business Saturday program.

A Corporate Culture Transformation

Social media has a way of changing corporations — shaking them up, making them cautious or loosening their buttons. Every company is different — some embrace it, some battle it. AmEx is doing all it can to run with the opportunities that social media presents, and it’s going big.

“The digital transformation occurring at American Express cuts across many business units, and it has to because of the breadth and depth of our business,” Berland explains. “From customer service to merchant services to our entertainment and travel business units, to corporate affairs, as well as our newly formed digital partnerships and development team, social media is a company-wide initiative.”

“We are continuously evolving and, as a 162-year-old company, have done that over the course of our history,” says Berland. “That evolution will continue as the digital space matures, and social media platforms are the digital manifestations of community and membership –- which are at the core of American Express.”

This is from Mashable Business

Due to the overwhelming replies and inquiries VMS-Washington wants to help your business out by giving you rock bottom rates for your processing.  We also can help your business by giving you great rates for unsecured business loans with an 90% approval rate for start-ups and existing businesses.  Call or email us if you want to know more.

Michael Roberts

VMS-Washignton
www.vms-washington.com
washignton@valuedmerchants.com
(800) 531.8575 ext. 697

Credit card company American Express seemed to come out of nowhere in the past year, offering one social media program after another.

FacebookTwitterFoursquare, YouTube, LinkedIn, Google+— it’s got them all covered, and even better, it stands for what its consumers want across all of the social platforms it’s on.

While American Express has seemed to pump a lot of life into its social strategy as of late, it has actually been on the scene since 2009, helping cardholders solve problems one tweet and wall post at a time.

We spoke with Leslie Berland, SVP of digital partnerships and development at American Express, for the backstory on AmEx’s social media strategy, mission and goals. Read on for what she had to say.

A Customer Service Foundation

American Express joined the social media scene in 2009 with presences on Twitter and Facebook, aimed at providing customer service for cardholders.

American Express first made its appearance on Twitter with the @AskAmex handle, focused on servicing Cardmember and merchant questions and needs. Berland says that @AmericanExpress and the official American Express Facebook Page came soon after.

“Our mission is to be everywhere our Cardmembers and merchants are,” says Berland. “To engage with them, service them, deliver unique value that’s shareable and create seamless digital experiences that surprise and delight.”

Since the beginning, American Express has built its social strategy on service, and it continues to improve its implementation by taking in user feedback. “We spent a great deal of time listening to the community. The community interests and feedback defined our strategy,” says Berland.

AmEx has come a long way — with nearly 2.4 million Facebook fans and more than 348,000 followers on Twitter for the American Express U.S. pages alone. Its presences have also expanded internationally, and the brand now supports efforts on LinkedIn, Foursquare, YouTube and Google+, as well.

Couponless Deals Galore

American Express is the master of the couponless deal in the social media space.

With AmEx Sync, cardholders can enjoy exclusive merchant deals by syncing their cards with their Facebook, Twitter and Foursquare. No coupon is necessary, just the linkage and a qualifying purchase.

AmEx first launched Sync with Foursquare in June 2011. In July, it added Facebook in on the fun, launching its “Link, Like, Love” app — after linking an AmEx card, a user can then access deals based on brands that he or she “likes” on Facebook.

At SXSW 2012, AmEx stole the show, launching Sync for Twitter and offering up Jay-Z tickets for SXSWers that completed the sync. Partnering with the likes of Whole Foods, McDonald’s and Best Buy, AmEx announced that after linking an AmEx card to their Twitter accounts, cardholders can tweet strategic hashtags to load deals onto their cards. With the hashtag #AmexWholeFoods, for example, a cardholder receives a $20 statement credit when he or she purchases $75 or more at Whole Foods using his or her synced card.

Now with a full suite of couponless deals to offer up to consumers, American Express is flexing its social media muscles in all the right ways.

Rallying Small Businesses

AmEx’s social media strategy accommodates the needs of both consumers and merchants. While much of what we see is tailored for the customer experience, AmEx goes out of its way to reach merchants as well.

With its national Small Business Saturday initiative, AmEx uses traditional and digital channels to promoting the Shop Small Movement, which encourages consumers to shop at their favorite local businesses on Small Business Saturday, the Saturday in between Black Friday and Cyber Monday.

Berland says the program has been a success for the company. “In 2011, more than 2.7 million Facebook users ‘liked’ the Small Business Saturday Page –- more than doubling the 1.2 million Likes in 2010. Nearly 195,000 tweets were sent in support of Small Business Saturday in November, many leveraging the hashtags #SmallBusinessSaturday and #SmallBizSat.”

In February of this year, Twitter partnered with AmEx to open up its self-serve advertising platform to AmEx cardholders. AmEx even offered up $100 in free advertising to the first 10,000 businesses to sign up.

And we can’t forget the Facebook makeover from last year — AmEx teamed up with Facebook to give five small businesses a Facebook makeover and $20,000 to grow their businesses, as part of its Small Business Saturday program.

A Corporate Culture Transformation

Social media has a way of changing corporations — shaking them up, making them cautious or loosening their buttons. Every company is different — some embrace it, some battle it. AmEx is doing all it can to run with the opportunities that social media presents, and it’s going big.

“The digital transformation occurring at American Express cuts across many business units, and it has to because of the breadth and depth of our business,” Berland explains. “From customer service to merchant services to our entertainment and travel business units, to corporate affairs, as well as our newly formed digital partnerships and development team, social media is a company-wide initiative.”

“We are continuously evolving and, as a 162-year-old company, have done that over the course of our history,” says Berland. “That evolution will continue as the digital space matures, and social media platforms are the digital manifestations of community and membership –- which are at the core of American Express.”

Due to the overwhelming calls and emails, VMS-Washington is giving businesses the Spring Deal of the Year.  For a limited time we are offering rock bottom rates for new and existing businesses.  The questions we always ask business owners are:

  • Have you checked out your current or potential merchant service company on theBBB?
  • Does your current provider or potential provider promote your business?
  • Does your current provider or potential provider send referrals your way?
  • Are you getting the best rates in town?
  • Has your current or potential merchant told you about the Durbin Amendment?

Wouldn’t you want an A rated company that and will promote your business though their social media and monthly newsletters.  For more information contact us.

“How do we drive Social Interaction?” This is question that motivates Ian Mackie, Senior Client Manager of Point It. You need to pick out relevant information about what you offer and share that with your audience. That relevance is what helps you to analyze who your demographic is and how to best customize your marketing.

Ian mentioned a Point It client that had spent $5,000 per week marketing their site while using Google Analytics – but they never analyzed the collected data! He warns that in order for analysis to be useful you must spend time actually analyzing the data you collect! Implementing Google Analytics to your website is rather simple, but you should commit to the time and effort each week to analyzing your results and adjusting your marketing plan as it evolves.

Market researchers are targeting mobile users in a new and different ways, aiming to not regurgitate the same ads over and over again to their audiences and find ways to make mobile applications user-friendly.

Ian Mackie, Point It Inc. ~ © Fire Eyes Photography 2012

Julian Michaels of Kreate Professionasl Network moderated this panel discussion about Social-Local-Mobile (So-Lo-Mo), which is a current hot topic in the realm of the mobility of technological interaction. His aim, via Kreate Networking events, is to give business owners access to great resources, ideas, and the opportunity to build relationships in the Seattle and Eastside professional communities.

Julian Michael, Founder of Kreate ~ © Fire Eyes Photography 2012

“We labeled it ‘mobile’ because it’s new and it’s natural context,” said Bryan Zug, founder of Bootstrapper Studios & Co-Producer of IGNITE Seattle. Smartphones make it easier to view full content websites, but it would be wise to build your online presence to be “mobile-ready.” Many people are on-the-go and want to utilize their time and their mobile devices for information and content.

There are a few applications that can help convert your website to be mobile-ready and may be worth looking into. Some companies are shifting their entire business models to serve clients using mobile apps like the ones for tablets and smartphones. Consider looking locally, to a company like Point It to help with your full mobile integration.

Bryan Zug, Founder of Bootstrapper Studios & IGNITE ~ © Fire Eyes Photography 2012

My company is Fire Eyes Photography and as a photographer I work with the visual aspects of my field on a daily basis. Images are paramount in showcasing the services I offer to my clients. Having the ability to utilize photographs to draw in my audience essential, especially with the intent of easy mobile share-ability. My WordPress.com blog automatically converts for easy mobile device viewing. You may already know this if you are reading this post on your device! The formatting is simple and easy-to-read and  the text and photographs show correctly whether viewing your device in a vertical or horizontal manner. Make it easy for your audience to do business with you and they’ll thank you for it!

© Fire Eyes Photography

Ian also spoke about clients’ expectations of social media and mobile application and said that Point It clients want to know what their Return on Investment (ROI) is. Since that is hard to pinpoint, Ian’s advice is that it’s important for your business name to be out there, utilizing social media immediately so that you can begin to build your brand. Build your followers through relevant content and draw your audience in via Twitter, Facebook,Pinterest, LinkedIn, etc.

Make sure you’re asking your colleagues and professional associates about how they reach their clients and look for new ideas that may be worth implementing for your own business and branding. Not every avenue is a surefire hit, but as our panelists pointed out, they can be very low risk and therefore worth trying.

~Written by Trishann Couvillion, Founder of Fire Eyes Photography

(on Twitter @fire eyes)

About Trishann Couvillion

Best corporate event photographer and business & headshots photographer in Seattle. Many top Seattle and Silicon Valley companies work with Trishann Couvillion of Fire Eyes Photography. Well-known individuals such as Steve Ballmer (CEO and President of Microsoft), Dennis Miller, Christopher Gardner, Michael Lewis and many others have been photographed by Ms. Couvillion. Check out her corporate website @ http://www.fireeyesphotography.com

The latest social media site to join the ranks of Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter is Pinterest. Haven’t heard of it? You will. With over 10 million users, it is quickly rivaling Google+ and YouTube for traffic.

For those of you who don’t know about Pinterest, it is a visual site that allows you to post or PIN pictures to your wall, or a wall of your choosing. It might seem more like a B2C site and it has been historically a strong site for people selling jewelry, crafts, or major retailers highlighting new products.

But lately, it has gotten some traction as a traffic generator for business marketers too. Here are a couple of considerations for including Pinterest in your social media marketing efforts.

  1. Pinterest is a visual medium, so think about the visuals you already have in your content library. These could be cool pics, images from the covers of your white papers or ebooks, visuals from your blog posts with links back to those posts, even pictures from behind the scenes at your company. All these could capture traffic from Pinterest and drive visitors back to your site.
  2. Expand your definition of visuals and you can include data and charts too. Graphs, charts, even illustrations communicate complex thoughts in a single picture. This type of content is perfect for Pinterest.
  3. Take photos of happy customers and PIN them as well. This gives everyone a warm and fuzzy feeling about your firm and helps potential prospects feel more familiar with your company and therefore more comfortable reaching out to you.
  4. Use dedicated landing pages associated with your pins so that you can track traffic from Pinterest and measure the effectiveness of your efforts.
  5. Comment on other people’s pins. This will give you some additional exposure and when people see your comments they might eventually find your site, your blog and your content.
  6. Promote your Pinterest content through other, more popular, social sites. Create a Tweet or a Facebook post that links to your Pinterest page. Pinterest is hot, so these extended networks might be interested in seeing what someone else is doing on a newer social site.

Check out our Pinterest page to see how we are using it to drive leads. Feel free to follow us and see our latest Pins! If you need help creating an ROI for your social media programs, we can help

Thank you,

Michael Roberts

I have noticed that when the  topic of social network is raised, it usually turns to a discussion of Facebook. Granted it is the biggest player on the planet however it is not the only one. Ok, at some point in the discussion it may get to Linkedin, Google Plus and Twitter (which by the way is a microblog not a network but it is so widely used it surfaces regardless of what topic is being discussed). The reality is,  although these are the “Big Four”, there are so many to choose from and depending on “your fancy” or strategy you may want to develop a presence at other networks as a starting point. Now that I have planted this seed in your thinking, where do you start?  There are so many out there – really. So whatever your passion, go and find your network. If it doesn’t exist, hey create one!

So for this post, I thought it might be useful  to share what is out there. Or at least start a list to tantilize your taste-buds. There is a good Mashable resource on 350 sites.  However, as this reference is from 2007, I have used this as a starting point, removing the sites that no longer exist and adding new ones.  I intend to keep this as a live rolling list that will be updated regularly. I will attempt to publish biweekly, as I research the sites and add to the list.  Feel free to share any sites with me too! Hey, let’s develop our own community of sharing social networks and the associated reviews! Looking forward to hearing from you. In the interim, knock yourself out with the list below!

Books and Community

  1. BookCrossing.com – It’s the World’s Library. It’s a smart social networking site. It’s a celebration of literature and a place where books get new life. BookCrossing is the act of giving a book a unique identity so, as the book is passed from reader to reader, it can be tracked and thus connecting its readers. There are currently 980,418 BookCrossers and 8,340,566 books travelling throughout 132 countries. Our community is changing the world and touching lives one book at a time.
  2.  Bookins.com – Book sharing website that enables members to exchange used books with each other in real time.
  3. BookMooch.com – Users can exchange books with others through points. Users gain points when they give books to others.
  4. GoodReads – is the largest site for readers and book recommendations in the world. They have more than 6,500,000 members. Goodreads users recommend books, compare what they are reading, keep track of what they’ve read and would like to read, find their next favorite book and form book clubs.
  5. Library Thing – A book network community of over a million members
  6. PaperBackSwap.com –  the site help avid readers swap, trade & exchange Books for free.They  only pay for the delivery charges.
  7. Read It Swap It – A free service that allows users to exchange books with others.
  8. Revish – Revish is  community for book lovers, letting them write reviews of their favorite books,  join groups, and  maintain a reading list.
  9. Shelfari – Shelfari is a popular social networking service for book lovers by amazon.
  10. Socialbib – Book swapping network between students.

Professional Business Networking & Community

  1. ArtBreak – ArtBreak is an artist community for sharing and selling artwork.
  2. Atomic Reach – Atomic Reach is a social publishing network  that connects companies and brands looking for high-quality content.
  3. Blogtronix – Blogtronix promotes corporate social networking, multimedia microblogging and cloud hosting.
  4. DoMyStuff – An online community where busy people can quickly find Assistants to complete their chores. The Assistants you’ll find on DoMyStuff.com are individuals and businesses located near you who compete by bidding to run your errands. This bidding system ensures that you find the best people to do your stuff at the lowest price.
  5. Doostang – An career community with over 750,000 elite professionals with inside access to thousands of jobs from top employers.
  6. Empire Avenue – Empire Avenue is a game platform  and online community where you earn virtual currency for being social — the more social you are, the more virtual currency you will earn. In addition to gaming, there are groups and social networking for a wide assortment of professionals, hobbies or general interests.
  7. HR dot Com –  Human Resources Professional social network. members share their expertise, network with other HR executives, continue their education. …
  8. iKarma Inc. – iKarma is an online professional and relationship management  network that is focused on attaining customer feedback and ratings for professionals in a social network media.
  9. ImageKind – ImageKind is a community and marketplace for professional artists.
  10. Jambo – Jambo  provides a Mobile Membership Directory that works like a radar to give any group of people the ability to detect, search, browse, and connect to each other, when they happen to be in the same city and as close as a few blocks away,
  11. Jigsaw – An online business card networking directory for users to establish contacts with each other. Each business card is listed with an email id and a contact number.-
  12. ProSkore – An online professional community where members are ranked according to their overall reputation – which includes their social networks as well as their professional experience and recommendations they receive through the PROskore community.
  13. Konnects – Konnects enables members newspapers to  engage with their readership and become the central hub of their social network community.  The Social Media features allows readers to provide feedback and add their content
  14. Lawyrs – A professional social networking community for lawyers.
  15. Linkedin – LinkedIn is a professional social networking website for business users and the the most popular professional business site out there. For more information you can read my post on Linkedin.
  16. mediabistro.com – mediabistro.com is  an online community that is dedicated to anyone who creates or works with content, or who is a non-creative professional working in a content/creative industry. That includes editors, writers, producers, graphic designers, book publishers, and others in industries including magazines, television, film, radio, newspapers, book publishing, online media, advertising, PR, and design.
  17. Ryze.com –  is a business social network. Members get a free networking-oriented home page and can send messages to other members. They can also join special Networks related to their industry, interests or location.
  18. Spoke.com – Spoke allows business professionals to create user-friendly profiles of companies and people in a smooth and organized process that replaces existing inefficient data gathering techniques. Profiles are shared with the community at large, including peers, partners and industry experts – all able to interact and collaborate to create relevant insights about people, companies, industries and trends.
  19. Viadeo – professional social network
  20. XING – XING is a  social network for business professionals. Members network from different industries, find jobs, colleagues, new assignments, cooperation partners, experts and generate business ideas.

Family

  1. CafeMom – CafeMom is a social networking site for mothers to connect and share thoughts with each other.
  2. CommonGate – CommonGate is an open  social network and blogging of theme-based communities (Gates) where people can make l connections and share relevant  content with friends, family and colleagues. This  social network enables users to create their own social network. The social blogs contain posts from any of the members, a communal voice within the site.
  3. eFamily – A premier social network to connect with family members and relatives in a private and secure environment.
  4. Famster – A private secure social network for family members.
  5. Geni.com – An exciting social networking site enabling members to create their family tree. All Geni users can share an unlimited number of photos, videos, and documents with their families.  Geni’s Pro subscription service allows users to find matching trees and merge those into the single world family tree, which currently contains nearly 60 million living users and their ancestors.
  6. Genoom – Genoom is a social networking platform designed to build private family networks. With Genoom, users can create their own family network and genealogical family tree to connect with relatives from around the world. From centralizing current family connections to discovering and sharing ancestral information, Genoom offers users a secure, private, and interactive family networking environment on the Web.
  7. Kincafe – An ideal social network for families to connect with their beloved ones.
  8. Kinzin – Kinzin is a Social Publishing® service for groups and individuals to privately share photos and create personalized print products. These printed materials are for  Parents for sharing with families, Coaches for sharing with teams, Teachers for sharing with students’ parents, Businesses for sharing with employees, Hobby group leaders for sharing with members, Camp counsellors for sharing with parents, Event hosts for sharing with guests.
  9. Baby Center –  BabyCenter is  a social network  for parents. It is the Web’s #1 global interactive parenting network, with more than 100 million parents.  Baby Center provides moms with advice from hundreds of experts around the globe, medical advisory board-approved information, friendship with other moms, and support at every stage of their child’s development.
  10. Minti – A collaborative parenting site.
  11. LifeTime Moms  –  social network and resources for mothers
  12. myfamily.com – An excellent way to connect with your family members.
  13. OneGreatFamily.com – An online shared database with combined knowledge and data at a single place.
  14. OurStory.com – OurStory enables users to share stories of their families with others.
  15. The Family Post – A sharing network for communication with family members.

Are you looking for Business loans?  Learn more about Business Loans at: www.vms-washington.com and ask about the Durbin Amendment that was passed on October 2011 and how it will help you lower your credit card rates.

I know what you are thinking.  I can use Facebook, Twitter, and Linkedin for free.  I can set up a page, profile, or account, and it will not cost me one penny.

That is very true.  Accounts on almost all of the major social networks are completely free to set-up.  They will never ask for a credit card or a PayPal account.  They ask for nothing but information in return.

Wait.  That is not entirely true.  They do ask for something.  They ask for time.  Time to fill out your profile.  Time to create that page.  Time to post interesting information and updates.  Time to respond to your family, friends, and clients.  Oh, and did I mention the time to find all those great articles that you are sharing on Twitter and Facebook?

They ask us to spend our time.  But that’s free, right?

Or is it?

Social media accounts may be free to start, but there are many actual and hidden costs to establishing a presence within social media.  It’s important to know what some of these will be, before you or your brand begin.

Actual Costs

Within your company, who is responsible for your social media?  Or are you the social media department?  Either way, the hours you spend on social media is time taken away from other aspects of your company, whether it be speaking with new clients or ordering goods to sell.

And, as all of the literature suggests, you should have a landing page within Facebook, as it increases engagement considerably, and this may be the last time your “fans” directly visit your page.  Not only do the applications to use cost money, ranging from $5 to $30  per month, but what about the time it takes to create the landing page.  And the learning curve?  If you’ve never done it before, it could take hours just to figure out how to create the landing page.  Then you need to create it.

If you are creating these Facebook pages yourself, then you are not tending to any other aspects of your business.  Your time is money.

If you have someone within the company handling this, what is their hourly rate?  Their time is certainly money.  Either way, setting up your accounts will take time, which relates to an hourly rate.

Now that you’ve set up these accounts, do you just sit back?  If you build it, will they come?  Unfortunately, the answer is no.  You need to tend to these accounts.  You need to find great articles to share.  You need to engage with your clients and customers.  The time you’ll invest will vary from a few minutes per day to hours per week, depending on your social strategy.  (You do have one, don’t you?  After all,Saying You are on Facebook Does Not a Social Strategy Make.)

Hidden Cost

Now that you are active on social media, you are beginning to realize that you will also need to utilize their advertising engines, something you hadn’t thought of before, while thinking this would all be “free”.  Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn all offer their own brand of advertising, whether it be ads or sponsored stories, to bring your message to your specific customer.  And all of these ads cost money, whether it be per impression or per click, they will all cost, and you will need to set a budget for these ads, that very well may be above and beyond your standard advertising budget.

So, in the end, is it worth the cost?  That is only something you, as the business owner, can decide.  I would only ask, “Can you afford not to?”

What other costs to social media have you found?  Share with me.

Why hasn’t your processor mentioned the Durbin Amendment?Learn how to lower your card acceptance cost: www.vms-washington.com and ask about the Durbin Amendment that was passed on October 2011 and how it will help you lower your rates.