Social media marketing is brand-building with benefits. While it isn’t as trackable as a Google AdWords click or a tracking number in your Yellow Pages ads, social media promotes the softer side of selling that many contractors favor because it gives them the chance to talk about the work and not so much about themselves.

Don’t Come off Like a Salesman

Realize that any social media marketing that blatantly pushes an agenda will almost always fail. The best advice I can give you is this; operate inside social media circles as if you were at a cocktail party; ask questions, answer questions, and just have conversations that flow naturally. These will be your best opportunities to influence others.

You wouldn’t come dashing into a cocktail party screaming your name, business, and phone number would you? (I hope you wouldn’t.) So treat social media with the same care and you will, over time, be able to reduce some of your existing advertising spending because you are generating leads online via social media.

The Final Analysis

In the end, social media marketing is about pitching in and helping the community. Obviously the community I am talking about is online and includes a lot more people, but it’s the same thing as if you were participating in a local car wash to raise money for the local youth athletic association. The only difference here is that social media marketing will provide a one-two punch in developing an overall marketing strategy for 2013.

—Darren Slaughter runs a boutique website design and marketing shop that serves only contractors in the home improvement space.

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Social Media: The Lifecycle of a Post: What happens after you post content to social media? These infographics might make you go cross-eyed 

Social Circles: Making social media part of your strategy to engage prospects and clients