Did you know that Facebook has around 955 million active members as of June 2012? Now, isn’t this population huge?

Not to be left behind is Twitter with approximately 500 million active users as of April 2012. An estimated 100 million individuals from this big group access their page at least once each day.

Now, there is also Google+ which has around 250 million members. And, as of June 2012, more than half of this number (about 150 million users) is reportedly active.

Now these are just general statistics.

When it comes to using social media channels for specific purposes, i.e. marketing platforms, several surveys have discovered these figures.

  • Approximately 70% of small and local enterprises use Facebook. Additionally, it is the top source of website traffic (coming from social sites) with a share of an estimated 26%. Twitter follows with around 3.6%.
  • Blogging is also making its mark in online promotions. Accordingly, 34% of companies (using it) see it as important, while another 22% consider it useful. Furthermore, 25% of marketers rate it as crucial to their business.

I can state plenty of other related statistics. But before we digress from the topic, let me state this basic fact…

Social media is highly significant, especially when it comes to making money.

The question is, “How do you make it work to your favor?”

Tom Cruise in scene from movie “Jerry Maguire”

If you are wondering how you can effectively obtain adequate income through networking, blogging, and joining forum, among other social activities, you can get a clue from the following ideas.

Educate and Inform

Consider this. Who would want to buy from you if your business page is outright selling? Your target customers wouldn’t be impressed with your loud advertising even if your profile displays great photos and visually appealing design.

So, what must you do then?

Offer them useful insights, maybe a solution to their problem or answers to their enquiries. This way, you can prove to them that your primary goal is to help and not to sell.

Provide Value

Other than educating and giving them helpful info, you need to offer great service. Most importantly, take time to build rapport and create a good relationship with them. This way, you can earn their trust and loyalty. And once you have gained credibility online, this is the time money starts rolling in.

Stay Updated

How can you be a “go-to” source for information if you are not aware of the latest happenings?

Therefore, always learn or read about trending issues in your industry. By doing so, you can provide people with interesting yet highly valuable insights.

Entice Your Social Network

Have you ever heard about the theory of “reward and conditioning” in psychology?

In general, it involves getting something in return for the things one have done. You can use this idea to encourage potential customers to choose your business.

Now, you don’t have to advertise discounts or freebies directly on your fan page. Instead, you can send those individuals (who have shared, clicked “Like”, or suggested your page) a message that you have given them a promotional offer. This strategy may just encourage them to tell their friends or family members about you, helping you obtain more customers. As they say, word-of-mouth advertising is a strong tool.

Be an Affiliate Marketer or Specialist

What if you don’t have a business but you still want to earn a small income?

If this is the case, you can choose from these two options.

1. Look for companies that are hiring people who can handle their social pages or blog sites. As a note though, you have to know what you are doing to impress such businesses. In return, you can obtain a nice sum from them.

2. Search for traders who are hiring affiliate marketers. By being one, you can help promote their products or services on your online channels, e.g. blog, networking page, or forum.

Wrap Up

So there are the basic ideas in getting the most out from your social activities. With the application of these methods, you can turn your fans and followers into loyal customers.

As a final note, you must only use social media to promote subtly because loud call-to-actions may put the people off from transacting with you. If you insist on doing so, you won’t be successful in generating money through it.

What do you think? Are these strategies applicable to you? If you have different marketing techniques or you want to share your success story, don’t hesitate to let us know what is on your mind.

About the Author: Emma Tomlinson is the Head of Retail at Smart Traffic SEO services and solutions company that caters to both SMEs (small to medium-sized enterprises) and large companies throughout the globe.