We’re talking about Facebook and Google+1. Is it worth the time and effort to incorporate these social networks into your marketing, and make the effort to collect “likes” or “friends?” More importantly, is it worth the time to network with your friends?

Yes, it is.

There are more than 500,000,000 people on Facebook, and half of those people log in daily. The average user has about 130 “friends,” and boy, do they share links and interesting pieces of information — about 30,000,000,000 per month.

Think about this. Just for FUN, people log on and read the bits and pieces of special deals, interesting articles, fun pictures, articles and more. If you as a business owner can get just one person to “like” you, then you are instantly recommended to an average of 130 friends. If you get “liked” by a power user, then we’re talking hundreds or thousands of friends. By any definition, that is good marketing

What’s the commitment of time? You need to put up the pages that describe your business. You also need to occasionally post an interesting picture or bit of information.

What’s interesting? Anything that speaks to the benefits your product or service offers to the consumer. Here’s an example:

Not Interesting: We just added 3 new chairs in our hair salon. We welcome Joni, Andrea and Hank as our new stylists.They’re great! Stop by soon!!!

Interesting: We’ve all but eliminated wait time with the addition of three very talented stylists. Joni is an expert in color and we are seeing some marvelous updates to our clients’ hairstyles with highlights. Andrea is our new men’s stylist who understands how to adapt a haircut to a client’s hairline. Hank is our new make over specialist all the way from the big salons of New York. All I can say is WOW! You gotta see this!

You get the idea. Talk about the things your customer wants to hear and tell them how you have just made their life a whole lot better.

Social Media is really just “organized recommendations.” People like discussing the goods and services they buy, and this is the opportunity to add a name to it. We always hear from our clients that “word of mouth is the best advertising.” We agree, and social media harnesses that power. That is worth a little time and effort.