The IFTTT Tool, Social Media, and Your Small Business

Social Media and IFTTTJust released last year, the IFTTT tool has been revolutionizing the way small businesses manage and relate to consumers through social media. It can be used as a way to supplement a company’s marketing efforts and is definitely something that every small business should understand. Why is IFTTT so important to small businesses? The three following items should make it pretty clear.

1. What does IFTTT stand for?

It stands for “if this then that.” This may be confusing initially, but there is a perfectly good explanation. IFTTT works on a trigger and action system, meaning if this trigger happens, that action will occur. A sort of cause and effect really. Triggers and actions are made up of ingredients that you choose creating recipes that connect with channels IFTTT has access to.

For example, if you want to receive an email every time your business’ Facebook page receives a ‘Like,’ you’ll select your email client and Facebook as your two ingredients that make up your recipe. The trigger is the ‘Like’ on your Facebook page, and the action is having the email automatically sent to your email account. The recipe possibilities are endless, considering there are nearly 60 social media channels from which to choose. This allows you to personalize IFTTT to suit your needs.

2. IFTTT will help you…

…keep up to date with what’s happening in your industry; even what your top competitors are up to. By identifying trends and potential opportunities, you’ll easily find consumers in need of your products or services. Although this functionality is no longer available, IFTTT could be used to keep track of mentions for certain terms on a social media site like Twitter. For example, if you run a small business loan company, IFTTT can track terms like “financing” or “capital.” By doing so, you can be notified by email each time someone uses these words in a Tweet. What’s even better is that the Tweet doesn’t even have to be directed to your business, but simply related to your industry! You may find that the Tweet was posted to another company, but now you have the ability to be first on the scene to respond to those requesting information about financing or working capital. A tool like this can help your company convert those in need of your services into clients, well before the competition.

3. IFTTT is great…

…but it’s not the be-all, end-all tool. However the chances are pretty high that IFTTT will work for your business in one way or another. This doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t explore other social media tools as a means of furthering your business’ online marketing campaigns. Because of IFTTT’s ever evolving ways of interacting with social media channels, you may find that access to certain online tools can be limited and/or irrelevant to your business. However it should absolutely be used as a supplement to your already existing online business plan. It is something that every small business owner should be exploring to see what value it might be able to bring to your company. And the absolute greatest thing about IFTTT, is that once your recipes are set, the tool really does all the work for you. Simply turn on, turn off, and change the recipes as you see fit.

Source: Sara Aisenberg, for Business2Community.com