Learning Online Marketing: It’s NOT as Hard as You Think
The hardest thing about learning online marketing is knowing where to start. The second hardest thing is finding the time. And the third hardest thing is keeping up with the changes.
I am on the upside of sixty and, although I have found it’s not as easy for us old codgers to learn as it is for the under 35 crowd, I am living proof it can be done. An example of this is – in my first six months, I went from knowing virtually nothing to running the social media side of a national congressional campaign. Unfortunately for our country and for my state, my candidate didn’t win although he made to the run-off of the primary.
So What Got Me Started on Online Marketing!
Among other things, I am a state certified real estate instructor who has found I love to teach. However, until 2009, I knew practically nothing about this world of the internet.
For a long time I found myself somewhat intimidated by the younger crowd and many of their acronyms. I couldn’t text with my thumbs if my life depended on it. I don’t understand bits and bytes and had to have my granddaughters teach me how to text message about four or five summers ago. Then in the spring of 2009, I was approached, and it was recommended that I learn social media in order to help others in my industry.
I was fascinated with the idea – thought I would spend a couple of months learning such things as Twitter and Facebook and that would be all. Little did I realize what I was undertaking.
Had I known what I do now I am not certain I would have jumped in as quickly as I did. Social Media and Online Marketing are fascinating but far more complex that most people realize. Add on to that the factor that things in the technology world are changing rapidly, and it can be a daunting task both learning and keeping up.with what’s going on.
Learning Online Marketing Platforms
My strongest advice is "do what I say – not what I did". Learning from my lessons will save you lots of time and lots of money. Here are some pointers I learned the hard way.
Learn one social media platform at a time.
My first venture was Facebook – someone suggested I join. I went in blindly - literally had no idea of what or why I was joining or what to use it for. Using my profile, I did come across friends and family I hadn’t seen in years – in fact, I even met some family I had no idea existed. So my "friends" list grew. I never got addicted to games, still couldn’t care less what someone ate for breakfast and, for quite awhile, I had absolutely no idea how this could help me in business.
Several months later, I stumbled on to LinkedIn. I soon learned enough about "groups" that I decided I should become a member of some of the ones pertinent to my business. I then started getting email notifications about "discussions" from those groups which I unfortunately didn’t keep up with. Big mistake as I now realize I missed picking up a lot of useful educational information.
Twitter was the real challenge. Talk about confusion – once I joined I couldn’t figure out what I was supposed to do. I even got some "followers" which was a joke on them for, back at that time. I never wrote a "tweet". The turning point for me was when I went to a State Realtor convention. At the opening ceremony we were told we could follow the events of the convention if we just logged on. That was when my first problem emerged. I couldn’t remember my user name and password. It took me two days to figure out what to do. By that time the convention was over. I felt like an absolute fool – came home convinced I would never allow myself to be in that position again.
In future posts, I will start sharing ideas of how to build yourself a community to help you market your business online.