Friday, December 2, 2011

Starting Off 2012: Boom...or a Bust (The Waldo Factor, part 5)

What are you going to resolve to do to make 2012 a boom year for you and your company?

The government contracting market is going to get even tougher in 2012. With no Congressional agreement on budget cuts, a 10% across the board cut in agency spending looms like a big, dark cloud on the horizon.  Add to that the perpetual continuing resolution that will most likely linger for yet another year and we have a massive squeeze on the contracting community.

Standing out, your ability to be found by potential partners and customers, to stand out as an expert in your niche, is critical due to the budget crunch. This is true for both companies and individuals, service companies and product vendors. Being viewed a s a subject matter expert of thought leader in your niche is more important now than ever before. Generalists will not make the cut.

Using web 2.0 tools and social networking can help.

On October 18 Market Connections released the 2nd annual "2011 Social Media in the Public Sector" study. Among many other findings, the study showed a dramatic rise in the use of social media year over year, with more than 90% of government employees using some form of social media- an increase of 41%.

Another finding was that 70% of government employees used LinkedIn and 93% of contractors were using LinkedIn, both big gains over the previous year. Market Connections study stats on how contractors use social media:

1) Marketing/promotion - 85%
2) Thought leadership promotion - 84%
3) Increased collaboration - 75%
4) Improved customer access to company information - 74%


More and more I am seeing job titles like "Social Marketing Manager" at companies of all sizes.

So here are my questions for you as we approach 2012:

Are you "on" LinkedIn without being active?

Are you on LinkedIn but with a bare-bones profile?

Are you among those who think your customers and prospects are not on LinkedIn?

Do you still think social networking is a fad or waste of time?

How effectively are you using LinkedIn to position your company or yourself as a thought leader in this hyper-competitive market?

Developing a social media strategy has become a "must do now" rather than a "we'll get to it real soon" task.

What are you going to resolve to do to make 2012 a boom year for you and your company?

Amtower & Company offers LinkedIn & Social Media Strategy training for individuals, businesses and associations. Contact me at or call 301 924 0058 to see how we can help you.  Look me up on LinkedIn- and see how I practice what I preach.

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