Social media is everywhere.

It’s on your computer.  It’s on your phone.  It’s in your inbox.  It’s on your TV.

Maybe it’s even in your car.

And while there are some questions about how healthy social media is, it’s pretty clear that lot of us are using it.

Social Media is Purposeful

I think the above statements are pretty obvious to most of us.

But to find social media’s power, we need to back up and consider the primary benefit of social media: its ability to connect.  Social media enables us to make connections we otherwise may not have been able to make.

“Ordinary” people can connect with celebrities.  Relatives and friends can connect across long distances in an instant.  People with common interests can find each other with relative ease.  The list goes on.

And now … another possible connection is becoming increasingly apparent:

Businesses can connect with their customers.

Social Media in a Business Context

The fact is that social media gives businesses an inexpensive tool to connect with customers;  moreover, businesses are taking notice of this, and they’re beginning to leverage social media in a big way.

According to Zoomerang‘s Marketing in a Digital World report, nearly 50% of small businesses are now using social media to connect with their customers.

It makes sense, really.  Connections lead to relationships, and good relationships have the potential to lead to sales.

Even so, some small businesses are still reluctant to join.  To this, I respectfully say that these small businesses on the outside need to reconsider.

The statistics are clear.  As more and more small businesses join the social media revolution, it’s going to be harder and harder for small businesses without a social media presence to compete.

Understanding the Social Media Landscape

While I certainly believe social media is important for small business owners, I also, to some extent,  understand why there may be reluctance.

For small business owners, I suspect some of the reluctance is related to confusion.

Navigating the social media landscape can be tough.  There is a lot of lingo that is unfamiliar and, frankly … made up.  From tweeting to poking to tagging – some of it almost sounds nonsensical.

Thus, it’s understandable why some small businesses write off social media before even trying it.

But lucky for us, Flowtown has come up with an infographic that has made things much easier to understand and connect the dots.

It’s called The Small Business Social Media Cheat Sheet.  It provides an overview of the social media landscape and will help you choose where you should be.

While it likely isn’t as good as taking a class with certified instruction, I hope this infographic will help some of you make sense of the social media jungle.

So now you have one less excuse not to join.


The Small Business Social Media Cheat Sheet 

Image courtesy of Flowtown

Social Media Cheat Sheet

If you have questions or comments about this post or the infographic, post them in the comments below!