Social media is a fast growing platform for business marketing with hundreds of millions of daily users on Facebook alone. Twitter, Google Plus and Pinterest are big players in social media. Regardless of which sites you decide to use, creating and growing your audience is important in growing brand recognition, increasing traffic to online and physical locations, and ranking higher in search engine results. Here are a few ideas on how to build your own social media audience.

Follow First
Each social media network has a search feature that lets you look for people or companies that have similar interests as you and your business. You can also find targeted users through industry and interest groups or communities. Following these people gives you some insight into your audience's minds based on what they are posting on their own sites. Additionally, you can easily see their friend lists to find more like-minded people. It is common for someone you follow to follow you back, increasing your friend list and the number of people who will see any of your own posts. In short, it's a quick way to boost your following numbers.

Post a Pic
Research shows that when you include an image with your post, it is 50% more likely to be shared or reposted by your followers. Some of the most notable instant social media success stories began with a great picture that suddenly "went viral." Images of your products, fun company activities or funny memes about your industry can quickly capture the eye of your followers and, once shared, help increase your friends list.

Repeat Tweets
If you are active on Twitter or other similarly social media sites where posts are fast-paced and often quickly lost, consider reposting your content throughout the day. This will allow you to take advantage of multiple time zones and both high and low traffic times, increasing the chance of more potential clients seeing your content.

Hire an Expert
Sometimes tapping into the right audience isn't that easy. If you find yourself becoming too overwhelmed with trying to stay on top of your social media profiles, considering hiring a professional to manage it for you. These experts can grow your audience, create better buzz and publish promotional content on a consistent basis. Most social media marketing services allow you to decide how involved or hands free you want to be with your social media profiles. Hiring a consult that can take over all of this for you will leave you enough time to focus on other important tasks, such as closing business deals, securing funding or enjoying a business-sponsored golf game.

Social media is the in thing and it's important to get in quickly while it's still hot. Promoting your business through social media channels is a relatively easy and inexpensive marketing strategy that can easily result in some big payouts.

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