Marsha Danielson, Dean of Economic DevelopmentBy Marsha Danielson, Dean of Economic Development

CBI adds to its online presence.

The Center for Business and Industry is changing the way it does business online and surprise, surprise - it involves social media. “We’re working to give our clients the tools they need to make CBI into what they need it to be.”

Businesses are jumping on the social media bandwagon, transforming their Facebook pages into online communities that feature tips and advice, promos for upcoming events and company news. Customers can view videos and photos, or read about products and services. Many businesses also post their company videos on YouTube, job openings on LinkedIn and company “tweets” on Twitter.

CBI did a soft launch of its Facebook presence at CBI South Central College in April. This was our first step towards an integrated social media presence which will include Facebook, LinkedIn, and YouTube to start.

CBI considers social media marketing as a necessary (and unavoidable) transformation of how we distribute our marketing messages: It evolves what was once transactional, occasional, impersonal and short-term into something that is passionate, constant, intimate and loyal. It’s a fact: Social media has gone mainstream. According to recent research, 75% of adult Internet users participate in or consume some form of social media, 69% read blogs and write product reviews, and 19% read RSS feeds and tag Internet content.

With an eye toward cross-selling, CBI intends to use social media networking to feature our products and services. Using Facebook, LinkedIn and YouTube will help build our brand, engage and retain clients, generate leads and aid us in learning what our clients want. The possibilities are endless!