Social media involves more than Facebook and Twitter

A recent survey by Constant Contact found that 73 percent of small and medium-sized businesses actively engage in social media marketing campaigns. This statistic is entirely unprecedented and shows how important social media is becoming for companies of all sizes. When most people think of web marketing and social websites, it's likely that Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and MySpace are the first platforms that come to mind. However, it is important for small businesses to realize that creating profiles and writing status updates on these pages is only the beginning of what social media marketing requires.

Here are some other efforts to consider.

Photo Galleries
The above-mentioned websites are all capable of posting pictures. However, there are many websites, such as Flickr, Photobucket and Webshots, that specialize in hosting high-quality pictures in large quantities. For many companies, it can be beneficial to include expansive photo galleries of products, offices, events, or agents. It's usually fairly simple to share these galleries across many websites.

Video Uploads
YouTube reigns supreme for video in the online world and it is the first place most videos are uploaded on the internet before later being embedded on other websites. Businesses that have a YouTube account may upload their product demonstration videos, special event speakers, or educational seminars, and then share the link on their Facebook and Twitter pages. There is also a strong YouTube community that rates and recommends videos, and these multiple outlets for potential viewership can be a powerful marketing force when properly tapped.

Educational Information
There are many ways that small businesses can expand their online presence through the use of raw data. For instance, if properly cited with links and footnotes, a Wikipedia article can be created on any topic if the encyclopedia community deems it worthwhile. With enough reliable sources from other websites, companies can lay out their history and services in a professional manner on this educational site. Additionally, uploading high-quality scans of menus, examples of business forms or certificates of achievement to a personal website can make a business' products or services more accessible, and thus more appealing, to prospective consumers.

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