When my book Get Up to Speed with Online Marketing first published in 2010, you might have needed some persuading that social media marketing was something you needed to do. Today, you may need little convincing. There is no longer a battle between social media and mainstream marketing. Social media is the mainstream. Facebook has over 1.4 billion users, Twitter has over 300 million monthly active users, and people spend more time on social networks than they do on email.

While “everyone else is doing it” isn’t a good enough reason in itself, if your competitors are on Twitter and Facebook and you’re not, you may be missing out. More importantly, it is likely that the very people you are trying to reach with your marketing messages are also on these sites. If your customers use social media, you need to use it too. The user numbers speak for themselves: these sites are neither faddy nor niche. A broad range of people use these sites, and some are your ideal clients, customers and prospects. Concentrate on being findable. If you can make your products or services easy to find online, you’re halfway there.

Social media is mainstream. If you’re not using it yet, you need to get up to speed – and quick. The good news is that you don’t need to do everything, and it’s easy to learn the basics. Get Up to Speed with Online Marketing will show you which bits to focus on and why.

This post is an edited extract from the Introduction to the 2nd edition of Get Up to Speed with Online Marketing. Read the full Introduction and Chapter 1 here.

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