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Are you unsure and lurking in social media waters?

The importance of social media and internet marketing in your sales efforts is controversial. Some argue that selling print and graphic arts services requires a more hands-on approach that requires phone calls and face-to-face meetings.

But others argue that you need to be easier to find, faster, and more convenient to work with and constantly touching your customers in multiple and different ways (email, social media, mobile). If you are interested in wading deeper in the social media waters, here are two ideas for three different levels of involvement.

If you’re a newbie, get more hooked-up!

If you haven’t already done so, sign up for LinkedIn, Twitter, and Facebook. It’s easier than registering for online dating sites like eHarmony and may in fact help your business. If you’re unsure what one should look like, just look at some others and if you ever get baffled, just ask your kids, a young person on staff, or a high school kid in your neighborhood.

If you’re just lurking, get busy

If you have just dabbled with social media, you should consider becoming more serious. The goal of social media is to get social—so you can start conversations or participate in conversations. That can be as simple as responding to someone else’s posting or as much as starting your own blog.

Content marketing or blogs are becoming increasingly important. Most are written but in the next year you will see more and more done as videos. The key is keeping up with your posts and your blogs.

Are you reluctant to embrace social media? Are you aware that search engines such as Google are using social media more to determine page ranking? How are you using social media to get closer to the first page in Google?


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About Howie Fenton

As an NAPL Senior Consultant, Howie works with commercial and in-plant print shops and industry manufacturers. Consulting directly with printing companies, Howie specializes in the areas of operations and digital production, with a focus on workflow, customer service, estimating and prepress performance and benchmarking, as well as budgeted hourly rates. Howie's experience and expertise positions him to coach companies on their investment priorities such as web to print, pdf workflows, variable data printing and digital equipment. As a follow-up to that, Howie works with companies to streamline their operations and train their staff to sell the value of the digital technologies. As one of the leading in-plant printing experts, Howie performs in-plant audits and customized surveys that benchmark financial performance, analyze workflow issues, and measure productivity, customer satisfaction, and in-plant competitiveness. His evaluations help clients increase efficiency and reduce costs, and his services are used to benchmark financial and operational performance and to demonstrate or improve that performance. A frequent speaker at industry events, he has written five books and two books on digital printing and variable-data printing and is a regular contributor to several industry publications.

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