Social Media (SM) is web based or mobile technology designed to facilitate the communication between people or businesses.

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The staff at Web Design Solutions will provide you with a username and password that you can use to access WSM. This account will be set as the owner of the site and can be used to create accounts for other employees.

Why is linking to social media important?

Social Media has become a huge part of today's society. Facebook alone has around 800 million active users, and 56% of the user base says they are much more likely to do business with or recommend a brand after they have had the opportunity to like it on Facebook. That's it- a like on Facebook, which takes all of one second, can increase your odds of gaining a customer. This is just one example of the staggering statistics that go along with social media and online businesses. What it really boils down to is risk vs reward. What's the risk factor of creating a Facebook page and regularly linking it on your actual website? It's nonexistent! There is no risk in doing this, but the potential reward is immense. You can't say for sure that utilizing social media will drastically improve your online success, but there's a very good chance that it will-- and isn't that reason enough?

Where Should You Link to Social Media?

This is a very important aspect of including social media buttons on your site. There are a variety of different buttons available, and some are better than others for certain situations. For example, when deciding where to place a "share" button that will allow users to post content to their social media accounts, ask yourself if the information on the page is truly something that people would want to share. If your site includes cool images, attach Pinterest buttons to them so that they can instantly be shared! Alternatively, if you have just written up a lengthy blog post, it doesn't make much sense to add a Pinterest button, as the site is all visual. Strategically choosing where to place social media links throughout your site without forcing them on people is a subtle yet effective art that can boost conversions substantially!

Don't Have Social Media Accounts? Go Get Them!

Facebook: Sign Up! Facebook is undoubtedly the juggernaut of Social Media. With 600+ million unique users, the amount of exposure a properly managed Facebook business page can generate is staggering. Facebook is so popular because it has a unique combination of in depth features without sacrificing ease of use. Setting up a page is extremely simple and you will be up and running in no time. Facebook works through networking. It may seem like a good idea to jump in and accrue as many friends as you can, but this is not a good idea. While you do want exposure, you want to make sure you are befriending people and corporations that will be beneficial to your company. Just like all advertisements have a target demographic, your Facebook profile should be aimed towards your target market.

Twitter: Sign Up! Twitter is a very unique social media website. While there is no separate account type for businesses, it is recommended that you make sure you use your businesses name as the URL for your Twitter account. Twitter can be effective because it is comprised solely of "tweets" which are short messages sent out that will be received by anyone following that particular account. Tweets are limited to 140 characters, which means it's all about being short and sweet. Upon visiting a twitter page, a user can choose to follow it, which means all tweets sent out by said page will be received by this person. While on Facebook it isn't guaranteed that all of your friends will see your messages, Twitter guarantees that they will!

Youtube: Sign Up! Youtube is much different from the previously listed social media outlets, as it is comprised solely of video content. Not every business will be able to successfully operate a Youtube channel, since making original videos is easier said than done. That being said, videos can be a HUGE benefit to any company, the fact of the matter is people love videos. They get a much more positive reaction from consumers and grab attention like advertisements written in text simply cannot do as easily. If you have a Google account, then you are already signed up for Youtube!

Pinterest: Sign Up! Pinterest is the intriguing new addition to the Social Media family. The concept of the site is interesting because it's almost entirely image based. This is how it works- Pinterest users can create themed albums (named whatever they choose) that will be shared with their friends on the site. While browsing the web, the user can "pin" images that they like and assign them to the albums they created on their account. These images are then shared with all of their followers on the site. This concept is very enticing because the idea of a purely image-centric way for businesses to interact with consumers had never been explored before.

3 Tips for Integrating Social Media

  • Make SM Buttons Visible. Best practices suggest that social media buttons be displayed on the top, bottom or along the side of your home page. Links or buttons that remain in your navigation as the user moves from page to page are optimal. To ensure that users don’t exit your web page altogether, you may want to create the buttons or links so that they open your social media pages in new windows.
  • Link SM Only if You're Staying Active! Linking out or displaying inactive social media channels will only cripple your online efforts. If you choose to go this route, it is important that you maintain your presence. If someone clicks a link and ends up on a dead Facebook page, they might just assume your company isn't around anymore.
  • Don't Over-Do it. You want to make sure that compelling information is easily shareable, but littering social media share buttons all over your webpage isn’t the way to go. Before adding share buttons to a page, ask yourself, “Is there information here that people would find worth sharing?” For example, if you find yourself on your “About Us” page and don’t see any added value to website-goers being able to share your administrative assistant’s contact information, then forgoing buttons in this instance is totally acceptable.