I recently sat down with Peter Shankman, founder of the network Help a Reporter Out, also known as HARO.
In this interview, Peter reveals why he started HARO, why it works and offers tips for starting your own social network. He also talks about how he built his community using social media.
HARO’s tagline is “Everyone Is an Expert at Something” and the site’s mission is to connect experts with journalists who are under a deadline. More than 100,000 experts are registered at the HARO site and more than 1,200 media queries are sent weekly to his global audience.
One of the big concerns about using social media for business and marketing is time. Social media activities do pose a risk of drawing you in and taking up a huge amount of your day just interacting with people.
Add that the technology is changing all the time. It can seem impossible to keep up with all the tools, software, techniques, etiquette, and social media best practices.
Do you know how to use social media to target a global audience? After all, social media provides a low-cost solution to engage your prospects, customers and partners located in different regions of the world.
As Scott Monty, head of social media for Ford Motor Company, says, “U.S. brands looking to leverage social networks internationally know that while their messages need to stay consistent regardless of the region, the language, cultural reference points, platform and tactics, all need to be tailored for each market.”
He continues, “Whether it is customer service, IT, HR or product development, there are a number of uses for social media. And when you add to that all of our constituents—customers, employees, shareholders, dealers, retirees—it becomes a very complex assignment.”
Here’s a look at a few of the difficulties and how you can overcome them…
One of the major objections I hear about social media is about time.
Do any of these sound familiar? “Who has time?” “You expect me to do all this on top of my normal duties?” “How do you fit everything in?” … and so on.
I am not going to lie to you. Social media does take time. In fact, time is going to be one of your major hidden costs of doing business on the Internet. And for some of us, that time could be wasted if we are not careful.