Social Media Marketing - 5 Must-Know Tips to Getting Started

Wednesday, December 09, 2015
by Karen Cioffi

Most business owners have some kind of social media marketing in place. This is true for big business, small business, and home businesses.

But, if you haven’t really gotten your foot in the door, below are five steps to get an audience going.

1. Open an account in social networks you think will work well with your business.

There are lots of networks to choose from. A couple of the biggies are: LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, GooglePlus, and Pinterest.

If you’re an author, you might create an account in JacketFlap and Author’s Den, and Goodreads. And, don’t forget to create an Amazon Author Profile.

2. Once you open the accounts, create a focused profile.

I work Twitter primarily and I see the craziest profile descriptions. Ones that give me no clear idea what the users’ intent or focus are. So, when you’re creating your profile imagine landing on it for the first time. What does that profile immediately say about you and your brand, your platform, your business?

People are in a rush. They need to instantly get the gist of what you’re about and what you’re offering.

You can check out my Twitter profile at:

3. You absolutely, positively need a Profile image.

As surprising as it may seem, I still see social network profiles with generic avatars or ‘cute’ images of an egg, a pet, or a cartoon. This is crazy. If you don’t take the time to make your profile look somewhat professional, which must include a profile header or business logo, guess what, visitors will take note. Guaranteed you won’t be taken seriously.

Always consider the ‘time element.’ Your profile must be focused – mean and lean.

4. The social network header area is another must do.

Think about this one. You land on a profile that has a focused header and you land on one that has the generic default header, which would appear more professional. Which account would you feel would provide more valuable postings or offer more professional services?

Even if you’re on a tight budget, you can get a great header for $5 over at

5. The description

Your description will give the reader a quick gist of what you’re about, what you’re offering, and what your qualifications are.

Write tight and make it easy to understand.

Your profile description, the hashtags, and the header should all be highly focused.

Along with these five tips, don’t forget to post quality content on a regular basis and be active on your networks.

Karen Cioffi is a former accountant who is now a multi-award-winning author, ghostwriter, freelance writer, editor, and author-writer online platform marketing instructor. She founded and manages Writers on the Move (a marketing group), and presents online writing and marketing workshops and webinars.

Karen has published 12 writing and marketing eBooks, the most recent, Article Marketing: Increase Website Traffic with Properly Formatted and Search Engine Optimized Content.

In addition to this, Karen’s website, Karen Cioffi Writing and Marketing, was named Writer’s Digest Website of the Week, June 25, 2012.

Join Karen Cioffi's upcoming online class, 

Basic Website Optimization Tips,
Blogging Smart, Email Marketing,
and Social Media Marketing

Visit our classroom page for details and enrollment.



Renee Roberson said...

As always, great tips, Karen! I am guilty of having one of those generic Twitter headers. Thanks for offering a simple solution.

Suzanne Lilly said...

Good advice, Karen. It's so important to have a professional profile on any of your social media. That's the first thing I look at before I follow someone.

Karen Cioffi said...

Renee, so sorry I didn't see when this posted or I would have responded much sooner. With so many options to get cheap, but good, header graphics and simple click to upload, every author, writer, and marketer should take advantage of it.

Karen Cioffi said...

Suzanne, me too. When I get requests to follow or like or connect, I check out the profile. If it's unprofessional or doesn't list the user's specialties, I don't accept. I just don't have the time to look any further.

The profile is such a quick and easy way to inform the viewer as to what you're all about. Everyone should be taking advantage of it.

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