As you know BH Consulting has been running this blog for quite a number of years and also are active on Twitter. I tweet quite regularly as @brianhonan and BH Consulting is on twitter as @bhconsulting.
People often ask me, as did Sandra O’Connell from the Sunday Times, what benefits has social media brought to the business? As a small business BH Consulting does not have the marketing budgets that many larger organisations would have. Social media provides small companies such as ourselves with a relatively cost effective way to promote our expertise and areas of knowledge. In the main I use this blog, Twitter and LinkedIn as the primary social media platforms to engage with other clients, partners, vendors and the wider community.
As a result of the above I have gained the following benefits.
- Using social media I have also been able to make contact with others within the industry whom I may never had a chance to meet in “real life”. This has allowed me to establish a business relationship with those people which had led directly to work. More importantly it has allowed me to develop my own knowledge by engaging with others via my blog and Twitter.
- Through my blogging I was approached by a publisher to write a book on information security, “ISO 27001 in a Windows Environment.”
- I was also invited to contribute to the book “The Cloud Security Rules“
- I have contributed articles to professional publications such as “Knowledge Ireland”, “SC Magazine UK“, “[IN]Secure Magazine“. I also have a regular blog with “InfoSecurity Magazine” and will be writing a monthly column for “Help Net Security” magazine
- Establishing relationships via social media makes with recognised experts in the field also makes it easier to meet these people at real world events. You already have a relationship with that person, albeit and online one, which you can use to “break the ice” with them.
- Finally, blogging keeps my website updated on a regular basis which helps to increase the page ranking of the site for Google, and other, search engines.
The great thing with social media is that a lot of the tools and platforms are free and require little or no financial investment. However, it does require investment in your time and that can be a valuable asset.
So has social media been of benefit to BH Consulting? The answer to that is a resounding yes. Is it suitable for all companies to get involved in? Again the answer is yes but make sure you are prepared to commit the time and effort required to generate content that will engage with your audience.