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Thread poster: ProZ.com Staff
Poll: Do you use social media to market your business?
ProZ.com Staff
Local time: 21:26
SITE STAFF
Nov 13, 2011

This forum topic is for the discussion of the poll question "Do you use social media to market your business?".

This poll was originally submitted by Tamer Mekhimar. View the poll results »



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Nicole Schnell  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 21:26
Member
English to German
+ ...
No. Nov 13, 2011

You get the wrong kind of "clients". Usually private persons who approach you with some personal documents. Persons who will firstly ask you: "This is HOW MUCH??!? I thought we were FACEBOOK / SOMETHING-FORUM FRIENDS!!, secondly will never, ever respect your request to communicate via more professional channels such as primitive email. You end up printing out moronic social network private messages to keep your bookkeeping in order.

Ah, thanks but no thanks.



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Teresa Borges
Belgium
Local time: 06:26
Member (2007)
English to Portuguese
+ ...
No Nov 13, 2011

I do agree with every word Nicole said, even if I know a few translators who got some (good) work through Facebook...

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Simon Bruni  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 05:26
Member (2009)
Spanish to English
No Nov 13, 2011

For some reason I can't quite put my finger on I detest Facebook.

I find LinkedIn an annoying beast too and it has never led to any business. It seems to be more of a means to become cybernetically reacquainted with past acquaintances than a valuable networking tool.


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Robert Forstag  Identity Verified
Local time: 00:26
Member (2003)
Spanish to English
+ ...
Not really Nov 13, 2011

I generally agree with all of the previous comments. I have profiles on both Facebook and LinkedIn, but as far as I can see, neither has ever directly led to any business.

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Amy Duncan  Identity Verified
Brazil
Local time: 01:26
Portuguese to English
+ ...
Yes and no... Nov 13, 2011

I use Facebook to promote my music, but not my translation business because I'm not actively looking for more translation work just now.

But there is something that the posters here overlooked about marketing with social media, and I'm talking specifically about Facebook. You never do it on you personal profile. You open a business page and keep the two things absolutely separate.


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Els Spin  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 06:26
Member
Dutch to English
+ ...
Yes Nov 13, 2011

I have a very successful Twitter account.

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R-i-c-h-a-r-d  Identity Verified
Brazil
Local time: 01:26
Member (2006)
Portuguese to English
+ ...
No Nov 13, 2011

I use Facebook and I'm registered as a translator and speak more than one language, so my professional abilities are visible to everyone, but I certainly don't use the site to promote myself as a translator.

Proz.com is specialist and rather formal website. This is the place to market yourself as a translator and get exposure, not down the social marketing 'public house', but then again, many might disagree with that.


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Siegfried Armbruster
Germany
Local time: 06:26
Member (2004)
English to German
+ ...
Yes and it works Nov 13, 2011

Social Media Marketing works, at least for us - to find out how to use it, why not invest in one of the webinars such as:
http://www.proz.com/translator-training/course/5609-why_you_should_seriously_consider_google+_and_facebook_marketing


Other marketing methods might work for you, and you might not be interested in new ways of marketing
or
you might have formed your opinion already and you prefer to join the group of great minds who also made up their minds about new technologies, e.g:


"I think there is a world market for maybe five computers." -- Thomas Watson, chairman of IBM, 1943.

"There is no reason anyone would want a computer in their home." -- Ken Olson, president, chairman and founder of Digital Equipment Corp., 1977.

"640K ought to be enough for anybody." -- Attributed to Bill Gates, 1981, but believed to be an urban legend.

"This 'telephone' has too many shortcomings to be seriously considered as a means of communication. The device is inherently of no value to us." -- Western Union internal memo, 1876.

"The wireless music box has no imaginable commercial value. Who would pay for a message sent to nobody in particular?" -- David Sarnoff's associates in response to his urgings for investment in the radio in the 1920s.

"While theoretically and technically television may be feasible, commercially and financially it is an impossibility." -- Lee DeForest, inventor.

"We don't like their sound, and guitar music is on the way out." -- Decca Recording Co. rejecting the Beatles, 1962.

"Radio has no future. Heavier-than-air flying machines are impossible. X-rays will prove to be a hoax." -- William Thomson, Lord Kelvin, British scientist, 1899.

"I see no good reasons why the views given in this volume should shock the religious sensibilities of anyone." -- Charles Darwin, The Origin Of Species, 1869.

"With over 50 foreign cars already on sale here, the Japanese auto industry isn't likely to carve out a big slice of the U.S. market." -- Business Week, August 2, 1968.

"Louis Pasteur's theory of germs is ridiculous fiction." -- Pierre Pachet, Professor of Physiology at Toulouse, 1872.


[Edited at 2011-11-13 16:08 GMT]


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Jenn Mercer  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 00:26
Member (2009)
French to English

MODERATOR
Other Nov 13, 2011

I use social media for, well, socializing. I work at home and chat with my colleagues and friends all over the world via twitter. At times, this has elements of valuable networking, but I do not use it in a strategic way.

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Venkatesh Sundaram  Identity Verified
India
Local time: 09:56
Member
German to English
Powerful pitch Nov 13, 2011

Siegfried Armbruster has made a rather powerful pitch for social media as a marketing tool for language professionals too.

Many colleagues don't seem to have the time (or inclination) to learn how to use social media.

I agree it should not be ignored. Another colleague has pointed out the necessity to have a SEPARATE page for ones profession (and not take the easy way out) That's important too. However expecting too much from social media (or for that matter from one's Proz membership) could also be wrong.
Cheers
Venkatesh


Siegfried Armbruster wrote:

Social Media Marketing works, at least for us - to find out how to use it, why not invest in one of the webinars such as:
http://www.proz.com/translator-training/course/5609-why_you_should_seriously_consider_google+_and_facebook_marketing


Other marketing methods might work for you, and you might not be interested in new ways of marketing
or
you might have formed your opinion already and you prefer to join the group of great minds who also made up their minds about new technologies, e.g:


"I think there is a world market for maybe five computers." -- Thomas Watson, chairman of IBM, 1943.

"There is no reason anyone would want a computer in their home." -- Ken Olson, president, chairman and founder of Digital Equipment Corp., 1977.

"640K ought to be enough for anybody." -- Attributed to Bill Gates, 1981, but believed to be an urban legend.

"This 'telephone' has too many shortcomings to be seriously considered as a means of communication. The device is inherently of no value to us." -- Western Union internal memo, 1876.

"The wireless music box has no imaginable commercial value. Who would pay for a message sent to nobody in particular?" -- David Sarnoff's associates in response to his urgings for investment in the radio in the 1920s.

"While theoretically and technically television may be feasible, commercially and financially it is an impossibility." -- Lee DeForest, inventor.

"We don't like their sound, and guitar music is on the way out." -- Decca Recording Co. rejecting the Beatles, 1962.

"Radio has no future. Heavier-than-air flying machines are impossible. X-rays will prove to be a hoax." -- William Thomson, Lord Kelvin, British scientist, 1899.

"I see no good reasons why the views given in this volume should shock the religious sensibilities of anyone." -- Charles Darwin, The Origin Of Species, 1869.

"With over 50 foreign cars already on sale here, the Japanese auto industry isn't likely to carve out a big slice of the U.S. market." -- Business Week, August 2, 1968.

"Louis Pasteur's theory of germs is ridiculous fiction." -- Pierre Pachet, Professor of Physiology at Toulouse, 1872.


[Edited at 2011-11-13 16:08 GMT]


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Thayenga  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 06:26
Member (2009)
English to German
+ ...
Other Nov 13, 2011

I have a profile on LinkedIn - and just learned how the site is using personal and business information for its own benefits through a back door not known to every user.
With this said, I won't use it anylonger.
Marketing my business is being done on a word of mouth basis - which works well.


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Milena Nikolić  Identity Verified
Local time: 06:26
Serbian to English
+ ...
Agree, totally Nov 13, 2011


Nicole Schnell wrote:

You get the wrong kind of "clients". Usually private persons who approach you with some personal documents. Persons who will firstly ask you: "This is HOW MUCH??!? I thought we were FACEBOOK / SOMETHING-FORUM FRIENDS!!, secondly will never, ever respect your request to communicate via more professional channels such as primitive email. You end up printing out moronic social network private messages to keep your bookkeeping in order.

Ah, thanks but no thanks.



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Giles Watson  Identity Verified
Italy
Local time: 06:26
Member
Italian to English
I lurk... Nov 13, 2011

... on LinkedIn, because when I was teaching at the local university one of my brighter students invited me to sign up; on FaceBook, because I once had to check out some profiles for a translation; and on Twitter, because one of my customers was toying with the idea of having tweets translated into English.

All three sites have their attractions but I can't see any point in trying to exploit them commercially unless you are a viral marketeer, in which case you would be able to earn much more by deploying your skills on behalf of major brands than you ever could by translating!


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de>en  Identity Verified
Local time: 00:26
Member (2011)
German to English
+ ...
Usage may be higher than we think Nov 14, 2011

Internet forums like this are also social media. Consequently, the number among us who use social media to market our business may be higher than indicated by this poll.

To directly market ourselves in these collegial forums would be in bad taste. However, our proz.com profiles do link to our forum posts, and those links may be followed by potential customers. Thus each post has the potential to create a good or bad impression about our business.

In that sense, each post builds a brand image. That's not something I'd want to craftily manipulate. However, I would want to at least manage my own forum usage in such a way as to mitigate any possible PBKC.

PBKC is an acronym from the software engineering field, meaning "Problem Between Keyboard and Chair". I'm sure we can all remember some incident where it applied to us.


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Poll: Do you use social media to market your business?






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