The mbgeeks community is young, just a month old. Friday’s chat was the second we are having in the series of mbgeeks monthly tweet chat. This time we looked into the use of social media by African businesses and tech startups.
The conversation was a revelation of the needs and concerns of most users of social media tools for marketing their idea and business. We had Mark Kaigwa as guest during this edition, although he could not participate fully as he was in an urgent meeting. However the tweet chat went on fine.
Many businesses use social media to create awareness, gather opinions and insights, manage relationships with their existing customers, generate lead and lunch new products. what were some of the main highlights of the tweet chat?
We Started by asking What can businesses in Africa use Social Media for? Our guest was on hand to answer, his response;
“African businesses can use social media for 3 things: branding & awareness, customer communication and lead generation.”
We also had Mobile West Africa in the audience, who shared with us, what they use social media for, here is their take;
“We track exciting developments via Twitter & get in touch with people behind them; some will speak at future events.”
There were also more people in the audience with awesome contributions, that are basic highlights of the chat;
For social media to be successful in business, you must clearly define your target. And build up the network with the media! #mbgeeks ~ @nnenna
#mbgeeks SM [social media] is useful if you have it WITHIN. It is cheaper and efficient. ~ @waithash
Those are a brief insight into what we discussed. For more you can check out the hashtag (#mbgeeks) or the tweetcloud
From the conversation, I observed a few facts;
* Many businesses are still not sure how to leverage social media.
* There are those who already know how to leverage Social media, and they have decided to keep it in-house instead of hiring any Agency to Manage it for them.
* Most of those really using Social media may not be using any specific metric system or Apps, but they have some real life Measurable Goals they look at, like Retweets and engagement.
There is need for a conference that would bring together those who have been using social for a while and producing results with it. This would save businesses a lot of time they burn trying to figure it out all by themselves, or falling prey to the named SOCIAL MEDIA EXPERTS, who may only know how the tool works, but cannot scale it properly to deliver business success.
The conference should include those who have the understanding of Marketing fundamentals and business management, as social media is only a TOOL. The tool doesn’t get the job done, it is the person wielding the TOOL that get’s the job done.
Till such conference is held. You are better of with an in house monitoring of your social media ventures, read tips online, experiment and adapt what would suit your business. The fact that someone can use Facebook or twitter very well, does not mean they can do your social media marketing for you.
It is indeed a very wide subject, that is still undergoing study and experimentation.
How have you been using social media for your own business or startup? What has been your success and how do you measure it?
please feel feel to share with us in the comment section. We will be announcing the Theme for next month’s Twitter chat which would take place JULY 1, 2011, 12noon GMT [1pm Nigeria time]