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If you've followed me for awhile, you've probably heard me talk about the right way to use social media. It's not just about getting your name and your business out there, it's about using social media as a tool to build relationships with potential clients.

So let's talk about relationship marketing strategy!

1. To get people to know you

This is the first step.  You have to get yourself out there and build a platform so people will know who you are. This is all part of building your expert status and content pool. The best ways to accomplish this is to make sure you are active on multiple sites like Facebook, Linkedin, and Twitter in addition to blogging.  Plus, you have to do more than just post!  You have to make connections. So when people comment on your stuff, be sure to comment back, show that you're paying attention and are acknowledging them.

2.  To get people to like you

A key point in getting people to like you is to be sure that you aren't using social media purely as a selling tool.  It has to provide value and build that relationship.  Post tips and information for their life or their business, not just sales pitches.  As people start to see that you provide good information, they'll interact more which allows you to respond even more!

3. To get people to trust you

This is where you start to see the big results!  It isn't enough to just be known, you also have to be trusted.  Once you start seeing people tag you, have conversations with you or start suggesting you to their friends, then you know you've made it here.  When you've established the trust factor, that's when you can move the conversation off-line and start the selling conversation.  When people trust you, then you know that you have already laid the groundwork for an authentic sales conversation.

This doesn't mean you can never promote specials or sales products on social media, it just means those shouldn't be your primary focus.  If people only hear from you when you're trying to sell them something, then they're not going to have the same know-like-trust factor.  This puts you at a huge disadvantage for closing the sale that can be hopeless and impossible to overcome.

So to move to the 4th stage where they actually BUY from you, make sure that you're using social media as a relationship building tool!