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JohnSheppard, post: 47942 wrote:
The way I look at it is: just pretend you are talking to people in person. Blogging = Conference Speech, Facebook/Twitter = Networking event

You go to a conference to do a speech to demonstrate you are an expert in your field. Same with a blog. You go to network events to get to know other people and mix with potential clients.

I think how John has said it is the perfect analogy, of a conference speech vs a networking event; it’s along the lines of what I’ve thought for a while, but something really went “click” in my brain with that analogy, so thanks John.

While all parts of social media can be valid, I think that it really depends on your industry and products/services offered as to which will give you most value. For some industries and businesses, being seen as an expert is most important. For others, being part of a community is more important. Other businesses are tricky to get right for all parts of social media.

Jen, for you I would suggest that your potential client’s aren’t really looking for an expert to solve a problem for them – they are looking for a quality product that catches their eye, at a good price, easy to use site etc. So SEO benefits aside, I don’t think a blog is essential for you. On the other hand something like Facebook could be more so, as it’s the type of product people will have an emotional attachment to and will tell their friends about (which Facebook provides), so to me that’s more important.

For Paul (peppie), for me I would be suggesting that a blog could be quite critical and a useful marketing tool. For the consulting side of your business you are very much a genuine expert in a really niche industry. So posting blog posts (the “conference speech” as John puts it) is definately relevant.

Twitter being the third one mentioned, I have seen a few people make very good use of it, and many hundreds more sign up and get no benefit at all. I’m sure it’s something that could be a fantastic marketing tool if one learnt how to use it effectively for their specific business, something I have unfortunately not mastered myself yet nor put much effort into.

Business to Business vs Business to Consumer also plays a part. Without wanting to sound like a Luddite, I’m yet to be convinced on the power of Facebook for B2B – maybe someone here can convince me!