[dropcap2]S[/dropcap2]ocial Media is defined as “a group of Internet-based applications that build on the ideological and technological foundations of Web 2.0, which allows the creation and exchange of user-generated content.” In a nut shell, social media is content that is created by its audience. Social media is fun and engaging. In the case of products or businesses, it creates talk in the community and around world bringing awareness and boosting public image, eventually leading to more sales. The 2 main platforms which are connecting people and businesses in the social media world are Facebook and Twitter. Businesses small and large now use these social media sites to engage its audience. Here I focus on the use of social media by small businesses in Aspen and how they use it to create more business.
The Belly Up would still be one of the most popular venues in Aspen without a social media campaign but with it, they have created a great online image. With their many “likes” people are informed on new concert dates and sample live shows through people’s home feed and are encouraged to join in on the conversation. These conversations are what make these pages so successful because they reach much further than the 6,570 people that “like” the Belly Up’s page. The conversation is seen by other friends that do not yet “like” the page therefore reaching many thousands more. They have a very similar Twitter campaign mirroring many of the Facebook updates to the Twitter page and making the shows known on mobile devices. This type of campaign is an easier sell to people because the product is music and fun but with that said the people at the Belly Up do a great job in executing their Facebook and Twitter pages by really involving the Belly Up community.
Here, the Belly Up offers prizes to the online community and really engages the people that “like” their page.
Jimmy’s Facebook page does not engage their fans as much as the Belly Up, but they do put time into it. They post photos showing the good times that people are having there and it has a good positive vibe. Keeping your business page up to date is the most important part of having the page. It makes your business look involved instead of a tumble weed page where the last post was a year ago and it makes one wonder if they are even open anymore.
Rustique has an active Facebook page, but they really use it to advertise itself to other people. This is good by getting their name out, but it can also be a harmful way of using social media. Create to many repetitive posts that look like advertisements and people will block the posts. Even though it’s good to see what specials are being offered, it is good to create meaningful fun posts that “engage” the audience.
Gwyn’s High Alpine atop Snowmass mountain makes effective use of their Twitter page by posting useful information. This is one of my favorite Twitter feeds in the winter season because they always give a truthful report of how much snow has fallen at Snowmass mountain and they most always report the soups of the day. It’s always a positive post that makes me want to stop in. It’s great to know the specials to any restaurant before you leave your house.
Two Old Hippies takes their twittering to a new level. They make their voice heard, they make it a point to follow lots of people, and it has paid off with their over 3,000 followers. Unfortunately I have found that they “machine gun” tweet and I had to “unfollow” them because they over-tweeted. They do a great job and you have to wonder what kind of campaign they are running here. They have a Tweet that goes off about 3x and hour and many of them come all at once so you know either it is someone who has ALOT of time on their hands or they are using a 3rd party software system such as Hootsuite to automatically send out pre-thought up Tweets. Whatever it is, it works for them and they have an engaged audience with many mentions from other Tweeters.
So these are just some of the social media examples with businesses in the area, and it is great to see other business jump aboard. Marketing a business takes an all direction approach and using social media through Twitter and Facebook is just one of the many ways to boost business. Like most things, it takes time and dedication, and if you don’t have the time to manage your social media campaign then you can hire someone to do it for you. There are many new up and coming companies that can design your Facebook and Twitter page, create interesting Tweets and provide different ideas on how to engage your followers. New companies like a2interactive specializes in running successful social media campaigns for businesses and should not be over looked.