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How Social Media Helps You Tap into New Markets

Social media engagement includes using online networks and tools for outreach and interactions. The nature of many of the networks you use for engagement provides you with a built-in reach beyond your immediate audience. Some networks have features that amplify your messages and reach better than others.

For example, on Facebook when fans of your Page like, comment on, or share your posts, their friends can see signs of their interaction with your Page. You have the potential to increase your reach exponentially to your fans' friends.

On Twitter, if someone retweets your message, it's amplified to people beyond your own following. It's the same principle with Pinterest repins, YouTube thumbs-up votes, and LinkedIn or Google+ shares. Whenever people pass along the information they read, watch, or hear online from you, your content and brand gain more exposure.

One action that's important to successfully expand your outreach is to publish content worth sharing and to regularly remind your followers that they can share the content you've put out there. Even more important to social media engagement is to interact with your immediate audience in meaningful ways so that they're more attentive, responsive, and willing to share.

The stationery company TinyPrints hit the engagement jackpot with a post that received numerous likes, comments, and shares — clear signs that it was well-received and amplified by the company's fans. This great content — in this case, promoting a bakery with a beautiful image of cupcakes — produces strong connections and a lot of sharing.

This type of engagement activity can translate into exposure for your brand and growth of your fan base, including people you might not be able to easily reach directly.

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The most popular social networks offer paid advertising options to reach highly targeted audiences. You can reach the right audience based on not only demographics but also their affinities, and in some cases, their connections to your friends, fans, or followers.

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