Guest Blog -- Darren Barefoot's Tips For Social Media Marketing

This is the first in a series of guest blogs we'll be presenting here at SiWC blog central, leading up to our conference in October.

Today we welcome presenter Darren Barefoot, who will return this fall as one of our social media experts. Darren and his partner Julie are also the freshly-minted authors of their own new book, emerging this fall. I'll give you a head's up when it hits the shelves.

In this post, Darren not only shares a few tips on Social Media Marketing, but also offers a discount code for SiWC blog readers who want to take his marketing course!

(Full disclosure: I'll be taking the course this week...and not only that, I plan to sneak into the back of Darren's workshops at SiWC 2009!)

So, without further ado, here are a few words from Darren...


**Three Often-Ignored Tips for Social Media Marketing**

There's plenty of information out there for authors and publishers on
how best to execute a marketing campaign on Facebook or Twitter. But
what about the big-picture rules of thumb? The tools change, after
all. In 2005, for example, nobody had heard of blogs. In 2005, nobody
had heard of Facebook or YouTube or Twitter. And the web is already
littered with the ghosts of social networks past--Friendster, Orkut
(though it's still big in Brazil and India) and so forth.

Here are three tips that will hold you in good stead whatever tool or
social media channel you're using.

* Don't talk too much about yourself. If you meet somebody new at a
cocktail party, and spend the next half-hour regaling them with tales
of your own awesomeness, how do you think they'll feel? Talk about
other stuff instead--industry trends, tips and tricks and even your

* Demonstrate value by sending your visitors elsewhere. For years, the
received wisdom of the web was that your website (and this extends to
social media sites like Facebook or Twitter) shouldn't have too many
outgoing links, because that would discourage visitors from staying on
your site. If a random outgoing link draws visitors away from your
site, you've got more serious problems. The power of the web is in its
interconnectedness, and people will appreciate the value you can offer
them as a curator for your industry.

* Quality counts as much as quantity. Not all website visitors,
Facebook fans and Twitter followers are created equal. Some are much
likelier to respond to your calls to action ('buy my book', 'spread my
news' or whatever) than others. It's much easier to double your
website traffic than it is to double your book sales. Pay close
attention to your web analytics and other metrics to identify the
traffic sources and behaviours that pay off.

Julie Szabo and Darren Barefoot, authors of the forthcoming book on
social media marketing "Friends With Benefits", are running one-day
workshops to teach communicators and marketers, as well as small
business owners, how to wield social media marketing tools. Attendees
will learn how to bring more visitors to their website, increase their
company's presence online and avoid campaign killers and online
pitfalls. Upcoming Vancouver bootcamps are scheduled for July 23 and
September 16.

Blog readers can get $50 off the $299 full price by registering with
the discount code 'siwc2009'. For more information and to register,



also blogging as leftwriter

and sweetly tweeting @kcdyer