The mad rush to use Twitter and Facebook and Pinterest and “promote your business to a world wide audience via social media” has become a bit chaotic, don't you think? If we each spent time doing all the things everyone recommends every day, we'd have no time to do the work we are trying to promote. Twitter and Facebook and Google + and all the other social platforms are great, if you have an audience there that will listen. They aren't the end all in promotion. They are definitely not the only and if you don't really understand why you are using them, besides “promoting myself”, then they won't be nearly as successful as you think.
The end all in my opinion is the doing with understanding. I can post about some great new design I think I've created, on whatever random platform is the hot topic of the day, but that is no more effective than if I stand outside my house right now and start shouting about the same. My neighbors might come out and shout kudos back… maybe even offer me a beer thinking it will help provide some stress relief and return me to sanity. But shouting and just pushing out information however we see fit is not the effective business promotion I think we all need.
I'm trying to wrap my head around other marketing streams for comparison… is there a comparison? That's the point, there are a number of ways to promote outside of the tweet and post method we are all rushing to get involved in. Sure, there is value in social networks. Absolutely we need to be utilizing them. Back in the day, promoting on forums was a big deal. Before that, just getting online was huge. Did you know, there are still businesses that don't really have a web presence? Having a website with a company logo is not a presence… its a logo on the internet. However, to effectively promote something, you need more than a logo or a Tweet… grow something bigger, longer lasting, something that will retain relevance for longer than the 30 seconds it's in the feed (30 seconds if you're lucky).
Think of how truly random the opportunity is to grab someone's attention via social media streams. With the thousands of potential comments flying through at the same time, what are your real chances of continual spotlight placement for a single person? The end all is working for and retaining more than a moment of someone's attention beyond that random.
Grab their interest, not just their attention. Build a fan base, people that love what you do enough to want to know more again and again. Feed that interest with more new, more relevant and more for them. Give them a reason to keep coming back. Ask them what they want, what you could improve, what they love about what you're already doing. You're not building relationships to be invited to Christmas dinner, you're building loyalty because you're offering something to be loyal about. Stay on that focus and you'll be able to grow beyond just a Twitter stream, a Facebook following and a mailing list.
What do you think the End All in marketing and Promotion is?