In last week’s blog post “An Introduction to Social Media Marketing”, I referred to SMO. (SMO) Social media optimization, sometimes known as social media marketing, is a branch of search engine optimization that isn’t as mainstream as it should be. Every business and church can benefit from some form of engagement with social media networks, but not every business (or church) does engage. In the very near future, any business ignoring SMO will do so to their severe detriment. This is why I do my social media marketing company (GTK Solutions) and something I help educate business owners about.

Here’s just a few of the functions an SMO campaign serves:

*Exposure. This is the main thing most businesses aim for when they engage in social media optimisation. Many companies let increased exposure remain as the limit of a campaign’s advantages. A little thought can make social media work harder for your website optimisation campaign.

*Customer service. As more of the average businesses can be contacted through social media than in any other forum, it makes sense to use social media networks as a kind of customer service line. The publicly viewable nature of social media communication means that positive customer interactions get your business some excellent coverage, although for the same reasons negative encounters are best taken offline.

*Brand and reputation management. One of the major changes social media has wrought upon the internet is the need for results in real time. This aspect of social media comes in as an advantage when your brand needs a little support. Businesses are using social media to respond to bad press in their own words, getting in before the media does too much damage.

*Media coverage. The social media can be used as your own little media network, without the trouble of bothering with journalists.

*** I hope you know that my heart is to educate, inform, train and equip you as Church leaders. Any mention to my company (GTK Solutions) in my blogs is just a passing reference to what I do during the day. Please know that my business is not geared to churches (they can’t afford it). I’m not writing this for any other purpose than to share for free what others pay me to tell them. My clients for GTK Solutions are businesses only.

However, I do offer consulting (not marketing) to churches and am passionate about teaching and equipping church leaders and pastors about social media. Let me know if you’d like to talk with me about consulting with your church or organization for SMO. I also include social media and online strategy in my report when I do a secret shopper for a church. If you have interest in that, go HERE for more details.

Greg Atkinson

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