Q: Is social media replacing traditional networking to attract business?
A: In some respects, yes.
When it comes to social media vs. networking you almost have a chicken before the egg situation. You have to build following in social media to effectively market, and you can't build an adequate following without networking -- and round it goes. My advice is to start by doing traditional networking and have your fan pages set up ahead of time. Make sure you've got the requisite "find me" on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, etc. on your marketing promo. As you're networking encourage people to follow you. Once you've got a big enough following then you can begin to enjoy the results on social media. Remember, though, to participate in your social media community. While in-person networking can be slowed down once your social media is established, you still have to be a "member" of that social media community. In other words, you need to like other people's stuff, make comments, and interact. You'll begin to receive recognition and connect with interested business associates (you do have to get through the "social" part of the merry-go-round). Soon business associates will connect and ask about your business. Many opportunities will arise. If enough opportunities come up you can scale back your real-world networking but not completely. Find me on Facebook under Michelle Gamble Author-Publisher and Twitter at Michelle3L.