Social media is a great opportunity for businesses to keep it "real" and engage with customers but being boring won't work, a social media expert says.
Likeable owner Dan Necklen said often people had no trouble setting up Facebook or a blog but it took dedication to maintain them. His company specialises in social media, email and blogging.
It was important to focus on one or two channels to get the best traction rather than trying to be everywhere, he said.
"Concentrate on doing those well because it can be overwhelming to try and do it all and getting a return of investment."
Social media was the perfect platform to communicate and gave customers a behind-the-scenes look, he said.
"I think it allows you to have a two-way conversation with your customers rather than putting up a billboard ... you can be real as opposed to making a brochure which is quite manufactured.
"That sort of thing is very proper where this is a dose of reality with people talking to people."
Blogging had also increased in popularity as it became harder to trick search engines into finding your site, he said.
"It's more about content and more about writing or saying things that people are interested in reading.
"You have to be comfortable in taking that step otherwise you will be boring and boring doesn't work in social media."
Helping people rather than selling them something also had advantages, Mr Necklen said.
"If you help people then over time they will trust you as a source and if they need your services one day who will they choose? It will be you."
Mr Necklen was part of a panel that would front a social media workshop tonight at the Tauranga City Library.
He would be joined by Sheldon Nesdale from Marketing First and Engage Communications' Kathryn Overall.
Tauranga Cities Libraries serial and business librarian Michelle Sims said it had already received 57 registrations from local businesses, non-profit groups and other libraries in the Western Bay.
"This broad range of people shows how it's not just businesses who are realising that social media is an important way to reach out to their clients."
Books about using social media to market a business were hot topics, she said and the event stemmed from that.
"I could see that was one of the most popular areas in terms of usage in the business collection."
Key topics covered would be Facebook, blogging, email newsletters and LinkedIn.
"We're hoping that audience members will go away with one or two concrete things that they can apply to their own social media strategy."
It was the first time the library has held an event aimed specifically at local businesses and hopefully it would be uploaded to YouTube, she said.
"We're thrilled with the response, it's fantastic."