Maybe it’s a sign of our collectively diminishing attention spans, but magazines (and blogs) seem to run more and more articles that are basically lists. There’s even a term for it: the “listicle”. (Want to guess what the graphic equivalent is called? Right, it’s a “charticle”!) Listicles often reflect shallow thinking and lazy writing, but sometimes they provide tremendous value, collecting and condensing a great deal of knowledge into the kind of piece you want to print out and tape to your refrigerator door.
I’ve recently come across two listicles of the latter kind, both from sources every small business owner should be following. The first is from Mashable, which provides all sorts of valuable information about social media. This post by Ross Kimbarovsky, who co-founded an online community of graphic designers that now exceeds 43,000 members, offers 10 Small Business Social Media Marketing Tips. In addition to its overall clarity and conciseness, this post adds value in two interesting ways. First, it goes beyond Twitter and Facebook to explain some less widely known tools, including mobile/local social network Foursquare and brand consistency tools such as Namechk. Second – and at least as important – the post suggests both a basic and an advanced strategy for each of the 10 tips. This approach provides a road map for small businesses that are just starting out in social media or are unsure how extensive a commitment they want to make. This post recognizes that different businesses will have different needs and appetites for social media, shows businesses how they can mix and match different tools and provides a framework for increasing the utilization of social media marketing over time.
The second post comes via the Conversation Agent blog: a compendium of 25 Must-Read B2B Marketing Posts. I haven’t read all 25 yet but so far every one has been thought-provoking and several have provided significant value to our business; I imagine you will feel the same way. Business-to-business marketing frequently gets overlooked in the rush to market to consumers, so it’s great that some of the best minds in the social media space are paying attention to the needs of the B2B marketer.
This is by no means an original observation, but it really is amazing how much useful material can be found just by spending a little time searching the Internet. It’s even more amazing how many talented people have done so much of the heavy lifting by finding, evaluating, collecting and editing valuable source material for marketers like us. We hope you find these posts as worthwhile as we have. Please let us know how they work for you.