Interview with Social Networking Authority, Doreen Nicastro

by Jerry Bazata

Here’s a recent interview I conducted with a social media strategies expert, Doreen Nicastro, CEO of Nicastro Consultants.

Doreen has twenty years of experience in information technology project management. She facilitates a process that helps small business owners with management and control of their social media presence, branding, policies and creating a values-based approach to social networking.

Jerry: Should I abandon my DJ website and just concentrate on Facebook and Twitter to gain new business?

Doreen: No, your website is the foundation of your social media presence and digital footprint. Facebook and Twitter are great ways to engage new customers and bring value to your market. Integrate your Facebook business page with your website. Use social media to drive customers to your site to learn about you and your services.

Jerry: How do I determine who are the market influencers for my products and services and what is being said about me? For example, in the DJ business, brides post reviews on Wedding Wire and The Knot.

Doreen: You can identify those and other market influencers by signing up at http://www.google.com/alerts. Claim your space on social media by registering your business on sites such as http://google.com/places, http://google.com/pages, http://yelp.com and http://tripadvisor.com You will be emailed comments as they are posted. Be sure to read them and to respond to any criticism off-line.

Jerry: How do I turn Facebook fans and Twitter followers into website visitors, and then loyal clients?

Doreen: Social media allows the blending of offline experiences with online engagement.  The purpose of having Facebook fans, Linked-In colleagues and Twitter followers is to get them to know about you, and then visit your website learn more about your services.

Your website should have a call to action to get visitors to join your mailing list, so make sure you provide useful, free information that will give them a reason to do so. Also use social media to keep people returning to your website to respond to your social networking posts.

For prospects and clients whom you think would enjoy online challenges, campaigns and specials, use location-based networking sites such as http://foursquare.com and http://scvngr.com.

Jerry: How do I keep my Facebook, Linked-In and Twitter pages looking attractive, professional and innovative?

Doreen: You need to know where your market resides and how you are going to engage them. Define where you need to put your attention, but do not ignore your other channels. The best rule of thumb is to update your status weekly and make sure to share information that your customers will find valuable.

Jerry: How does Linked-in differ from Facebook for example, and do I really need both?

Doreen: Consider Linked In the office, Twitter the water cooler and Facebook the family/business barbeque. Depending on your market, you may spend more time in one space than the other.

It’s important to know boundaries, limits and efficiencies. Blend real life experiences with social networking engagement in an appropriate, respectful way.  Make sure that you talk about your social media values, policies and best practices. State what your policy on capturing (pictures, video, testimonials from employees and customers) at events.

In a nutshell, Doreen’s advice is to claim your voice. Listen, engage and respond to your market! Technology, social media tools, and social networking are fluid and constantly changing. The constant is our connection with current and future clients.

Want to learn more about social media strategies or have questions for Doreen? Drop her a note at doreen@nicastroconsultants.com or visit her website at http://nicastroconsultants.com.

Doreen and I are interested in hearing about your marketing initiatives on Facebook and Linked-In, so join our networks at http://www.linkedin.com/in/doreennicastro and http://www.linkedin.com/in/jerrybazata.

Jerry Bazata – Money Answer Man

Jerry Bazata has over 25 years of experience as a professional mobile entertainer. He is the owner of DJ Jaz Music and Entertainment, and J & J Marketing and Entertainment, a leading consultant to the event planning and music industries. Jerry is also a Vice President in the Global Commercial Bank-Business Banking Group of a global financial institution.

He has been a featured speaker numerous times at the International Bar & Restaurant Show in Las Vegas and the International DJ Expo in Atlantic City. Jerry’s charismatic, humorous and down-to-earth style allows attendees to get educated in an entertaining manner. He provides guidance and inspiration to help DJ business owners achieve their financial goals.

Additionally, Jerry has authored countless articles about financial and marketing success strategies that have appeared in a DJ Times Magazine and financial publications. His insights and forecasting abilities are second to none.

Jerry is a graduate of Sacred Heart University in Connecticut. He holds Bachelor of Administration Banking and Finance, and Bachelor of Administration Marketing degrees as well as an American Institute of Banking Sales Management and Theory Degree.

You can visit Jerry’s DJ website at http://MaineDiscJockey.com or can email him at Jerry@mainediscjockey.com.

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