Our last Google Hang Out On Air was so entertaining and insightful, it might just become this winter's blockbuster. I decided to sum it up in cinematic fashion. Enjoy the movie references and my own jingle at the end!
THE SOCIAL NETWORK
There's a network of architects successfully employing social media professionally: it's easy to see why we cast them to be the panelists on our November episode of How to Succeed in Architecture.
Bob Borson, AIA, is currently the 2013 Chair of the Digital Communications Committee for the Texas Society of Architects. Bob's blog "Life on an Architect" is one of the most popular blogs written by an architect.
Enoch Bartlett Sears, AIA, talks with successful architects and innovative marketers on his weekly interview show Business of Architecture which is available on iTunes and YouTube. His book Social Media for Architects is available at BusinessofArchitecture.com.
Jeff Echols spends countless hours studying, developing and implementing strategies for insuring marketing success for Architects online. At Architect of the Internet he documents the good, the bad and the ugly in social media, all with a focus on the practice of architecture.
THE USUAL SUSPECTS
There are plenty of social media platforms out there, and even though you might have an account for every site on the planet, it doesn't mean that it's the right thing to do. The more social media you use, not necessarily the better.
When we asked our guests to list the platforms they favored, we came up with this social media line up. You might recognize some of the usual suspects. If you don't, take note.
Do they ring a bell? When picking one of these platforms make sure you can post on it consistently.
Enoch Sears shared his 5 tips for Twitter success during our program:
Remember, the first thing you 'll need is: Time.
Start setting some time aside for your social media interactions. As Bob Borson puts it "you get out of it whatever you put into it".
A few hours per week should get you started. If you are blogging, make sure to be consistent, blog every week or a few times a week. Blogging less frequently is not worth it, so you might as well put your time into another social network.
Create new habits and set limits. We have all been caught in a social media time warp at some point or another (one minute you are on Facebook, the next minute your kids are graduating from college -and you didn't have any kids when you logged in). Use little egg timers if you have to.
OH BROTHER, WHERE ART THOU?
It's important to connect with the right people. Explore those places where your prospective clients might be. Identify who you are trying to reach, and then tap into those communities online. This goes right along with setting goals. Bob, Jeff and Enoch shared some of their goals for being on social media:
Building a community.
Educate. Connect . Communicate.
Getting more clients.
Help architects conquer the world!
A PERFECT PLAN
Remember that using social media for your business goes hand in hand with your content marketing strategy. You can create content or you can share content that you feel is relevant to what you do. Either way, make sure your message gets across.
If you go through all the trouble to create content, make it work for you across different platforms. A blog can be turned into a video interview, that can be turned into a podcast which can in turn inspire an infographic....you get the gist.
Don't be afraid to let your personality shine through. Often times personality adds value. Most of all, be yourself: other like-minded people will find you and your prospective clients will know what they are getting themselves into!
Also, you don't have to be a good "writer" to write a blog. Tap into your creativity, be inspired. Bob Borson if a firm believer that blogging will help you become a better architect.
At the end, we asked our three panelists for some final words of advice. Here's what each of them shared:
Jeff Echols: "In Social Media you'll learn by doing."
Bob Borson: "So go out and do it!"
Enoch Sears: "Just do it, with a strategy"
And don't forget that the backbone of your social media presence is what happens on your website, so make sure that end is taken care of.
At Novedge we have had some fun of our own with a little jingle:
" You don't have to be rich to be on social media, you don't have to be cool (although it helps)......You just need your extra time and your .........tweet)"