For South Florida attorneys, Boca Raton accountants, Miami retailers or Miami Beach luxury real estate agents, “marketing” embraced the tradition of attending a networking event, inviting a client or prospect to lunch or speaking at a seminar and saying they’ve “marketed” their businesses.

Then social media arrived. To some, blogging, Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and other social media loosely translated to “Marketing made simple.” They decided social media could replace “traditional” marketing and brand building and it effectively supplanted any marketing that required any out-of-office effort. Networking and speaking events became less frequent, as did calls to the printer to order more business cards.

Not surprising, for many, the new prospect pipeline waned.

The arrival of social media has created a new marketing arithmetic. This isn’t an either-or proposition. The addition of offline marketing and social media create a whole greater than the sum of its parts. It’s all how you compute the calculus.

Below are four strategies to help in-person and online marketing empower each other:

First, grab a stack of business cards and get into the habit of attending several networking events, seminars or educational programs each month. Better yet, build your expert brand by speaking publicly. Before the events, share on social media that you’ll be attending. Ask clients, prospects, peers or referral sources you’re connected to online if they will be attending, too. If so, slot time to meet. The goal should be to return to the office with as few of your business cards as possible, along with a handful from new prospects. You never know what will prompt that next business call.

Next, before, during or following these events, share compelling facts on your social media. Tweet a speaker’s comment. Post a photo to your corporate Facebook page. If you’re speaking, share a segment or frame grab from your presentation. Better yet, have someone video your presentation and post it to your YouTube channel later. You can even turn your presentation into a podcast shared from your website or blog.

Finally, follow up in the coming days with those you saw and especially those you met at the event. Schedule breakfast meeting or a chat over coffee. Further share your expertise by offering some advice or assistance, without giving away too much. Of course, your business card has links to your Facebook, Twitter and blog, where you’re sharing a constant stream of fresh insights, right?

Whether you’re a professional service provider like an attorney or an accountant, a luxury realtor or a high-end retailer marketing in the digital age, converge online and offline outreach and maximize this new arithmetic.

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