I remember the first time (around 2008) someone asked for my Facebook ID. I told him I had none and he was like what planet are you from? I quickly had to go about looking for how to setup an account for myself when I could no longer bear the disappointment my friends felt learning I wasn’t on Facebook. Yes, Facebook, Twitter, Whatsapp and others are the happening things today.
Everyone wants to get involved. Everyone wants to flow along. Seeing that these social media stuff meant a lot to my friends and pretty much to everyone else, I devoted my time to study and master it and today, I am a very active user of most of the popular social media platforms, and can boast of being an expert who can tell people about it.
What I bring on board in this article is my findings about social media and how you may not be using it to your advantage. As we proceed in this brief masterpiece, you will definitely see how social media can be used to your advantage.
• What is the social media meant for? It is supposed to help us socialize, connect and network.
• Who benefits from the usage of social media? It is a two-way thing. The owners of the network benefit from it and you, the user can also benefit. Anyone can benefit from it.
• Are you benefiting from the social media? Your answer to this question could be ‘YES’. At least you chat with friends, interact, post pictures, and entertain yourself with audios, videos, photos, blah blah blah. Well, you are not far from the truth, those are also benefits.
• But are you losing on social media? And my answer is a big fat ‘YES’. You buy a device (expensive), you pay for data (also expensive) and you waste your time (most expensive) Now let’s dig deeper into the crude facts.
The owners of these social media platforms are the main beneficiaries of your using the social media. They created the platform that brought together billions of people from across the world. They sell ads that you buy and your money ends up in their pockets. That’s simple!
• Who else benefits from the social media? Smart users also benefit from the social media by leveraging on the enormous online population to sell their products and services. This is also simple. See some of these amazing statistics below;
Internet users according to Internetworldstats.com, June 30, 2016
World population – 7,340,159,492 (over 7.3 billion)
Internet users – 3,675,824,813 (about 3.7 billion)
How many people are on social media? Let’s take a look at the popular ones.
1. Snapchat (100 million users)
2. Google+ (300 million users)
3. Twitter (320 million users)
4. Instagram (400 million users)
5. LinkedIn (450 million users)
6. Whatsapp (900 million)
7. Youtube (over 1 billion users)
8. Facebook (1.71 billion users)
How rich are these social media entrepreneurs? See for yourself
• 7. Kevin Systrom (Instagram) $1.1 billion
• 6. Evan Spiegel (Snapchat) $2.1 billion
• 5. Jack Dorsey (Twitter) $2.3 billion
• 4. Reid Hoffman (LinkedIn) $3.6 billion
• 3. Jan Koum (Whatsapp) $7.9 billion
• 2. Larry Page (Google) $29.2 billion
• Mark Zuckerberg (Facebook) $46 billion
Wow! Welcome back. You must already be feeling dizzy from all these facts and figures. Now let us continue with the important questions.
• How many out of the huge internet population are you using to your advantage?
• What do you do with an audience of over 3.7 billion?
May I also add that there are few individuals who are using social media to their advantage; these are individuals and firms who have learnt to brandish their products and services to the global audience while at the same time socializing. To me, that’s being smart.
How you are not using the social media to your advantage
Now back to the heart of the matter. You are not using the social media to your advantage if you can’t use it to showcase your brand, product or services, or if it can’t put any extra money in your pocket.
If all you could offer was chatting, snapping photos and posting them, posting and reading jokes and other stuffs, then you are the one losing out on social media. Doing all these things is good but at the same time, it is worthless if it cannot add an extra coin to your bank account.
What smart people do
• Build an audience for yourself
You probably must have done this already if you have so many friends in your social media circle. Businesses create pages and publicise it to get more likes and followership. That’s how you expand your circle and your influence. Make sure you have many people who can see what you post.
• Keep your friends closer by always promoting quality content
Nothing pisses me of like having a friend who can do nothing better than post trash that keeps showing on my wall. Once I caution them and they don’t heed, I block or delete them without delay. May be you would delete them too and this would probably be the case with everyone else. The rule is simple. ‘Always promote quality content.’
With time, they will begin to see you as an expert in the area you present yourself. They will also see you as a serious minded person; someone they can trust and do business with. Pastors know how to do this a lot. They sure know how to compose powerful prayers that will always inspire you to respond by typing ‘amen’. They do not do this for the fun of it, but are indirectly telling you ‘This is what I do.’ And if tomorrow they publish an invitation to their programme, you’ll see people attend in large numbers.
• Thirdly, find a product or service you can promote
An easy way to start is by posting the items you have for sale and in the case of services rendering, post pictures of jobs you’ve do in the past. The good thing is that people will start to identify you by what you do. If they have no need to buy from you, they may refer their friends. Many times, people have sent me messages about designs, prints, branding and so on, and about 65% of them end up paying for my service.
What if you don’t have any product or service to sell? Negotiate with people who have products or services and have them pay you a commission for every customer you bring to them. For instance, there are many people who earn a lot referring customers to me. For designs, they get 20% of the entire worth and for printing services, they get 10%.
You can also go into affiliate marketing. Time will fail me to discuss affiliate marketing in this post, so watch out for another article on ‘Affiliate marketing made easy’
If you have read this article so far, then I strongly believe you want to turn things around for yourself. It shouldn’t be social media taking from you all the time. This is one way to get social media to serve you. Most importantly, remember that social media is meant to be an echo of your real existence. Your life is not supposed to be ruled by it. Put everything you’ve learnt today to use and you would have seen opportunities where other people couldn’t see.
Read also 5 Business Ideas to earn money online
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Now go make some money!