Legend has it that the ancient Chinese emperors loved the number nine as it’s the highest single-digit number in base ten, believing that it stands for completeness and eternity. Which is quite symbolic as I put the final touches to the manuscript before uploading it to the Amazon bookstore.

“Life begins at the end of your comfort zone.”

Neale Donald Walsch

Or in other words, the finish line may not be where you think it is – an appropriate sentiment for the ninth and final book in the Social Media Mastery series. Social Media is constantly changing and adapting which will mean that my books will also need to change adapt and evolve.

As with Social Media technology, branding strategies are forever evolving and staying ahead of your competitors with a that reflects your business is critical to your success.  In some instances, effective branding is vital to the very survival of a business. In all instances, good branding is essential for any business to achieve its full potential. It is easy to think of marketing as merely placing ads. However, branding is broader than just advertising. Branding involves all of the ways in which you communicate with customers. Essentially, branding is presenting a message to customers and influencing customer perceptions. In fact, you are marketing whether you realise it or not. The question is: Are you communicating the right message?

Smaller businesses must take a more creative and coordinated approach to branding since limited budgets don’t permit spending large amounts on national TV commercials, aggressive ad campaigns, etc. In addition, most small businesses don’t have eccess resources to waste on ineffective branding. Therefore, smaller business owners must work to understand their customers, their business, and its strengths in order to craft an effective branding strategy.

Why is branding important?

All businesses need customers. Branding communicates with customers directly. It is the process by which a business attracts customers and generates sales. Branding involves retaining current customers and gaining exposure to new ones. It is important to understand that everything you do in your business relates to branding.

However, complete the series may be but completion isn’t so much an end to the subject, more a case of these nine books being the sum of all the parts that you’ll constantly review and apply in your use of social media. And evaluate, of course; because it’s the process of evaluation – which I’ve discussed several times throughout this and the other books – that will keep you ahead of your field, whether that be as a social media manager or not. Mastery of anything is a never-ending process whatever the field, but if you’ve made it to the end of this series, you’re well on your way to being a master of social media – congratulations!

Grab the set of nine workbooks from CreateSpace.

Follow Lisa on Twitter or subscribe to her newsletter at lisaharrison.com.au.

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