This guest post is written by Kevin Moor. To write an article for our website, kindly read our Write for Us guideline.

There are many social networks including Facebook, Twitter, Google Plus, Foursquare and LinkedIn. There are also more and more social media sites that are being developed each and every day. As more and more folks flock to these social sites, it has become imperative for businesses of all types to have a social media presence.

As you take your business onto the social web, there are many dos and don’ts, tips and tricks, best practices, and more that you should follow in order to best represent your business online.

The following are just 10 tips for using these social media sites for your business to help you get started.

1.) Set up accounts on as many networks as you can.

This doesn’t mean you need to get active on these networks, and you don’t even have to complete a profile. Much like you want to buy related domains to protect your name from the competition, you will want to be sure that competing sites or unreasonable disgruntled customers can’t set up an account on your name. One day using that network may make sense, and then you can get active.

2.) Be easy to find.

You will want to make sure that you have all social media accounts set up so that you are searchable. Additionally, you should be sure that your business name is the profile name if at all possible with as few additional characters as possible.

3.) Set up business accounts.

Some social media networks, like Twitter, don’t have dedicated business accounts, but many others do. Be sure to set up the proper account type, as otherwise you may be in violation of the networks terms and you could find yourself booted.

4.) Use an appropriate profile picture.

Ideally, your profile picture should be a company logo or an image of your location or a product. Just make sure that whatever you choose, make it relevant to your business. This is key for your social media success.

5.) Don’t use the default image.

If you don’t have good image for a profile picture, get one right away. Don’t use the default image, as that will make your business look less credible, and it may cause some visitors to wonder if they are viewing a legitimate social media account.

6.) Talk back.

Social media is about connections and conversations. You don’t have to address every comment or post that mentions your business, but direct questions need to be answered, even if only to direct them to the proper way to contact customer care or to link to a website for frequently asked questions. If you ignore comments, especially negative ones, you might be making a PR nightmare for yourself.

7.) Give a call to action.

The best way to get folks to interact with your company or brand online is by giving a call to action. Asking a question, requesting feedback or telling them to visit a site or click like is a good way to get them to interact with your business and make the most out of these social media sites.

8.) Learn how the social media sites you are using work.

Many of these individual sites have tips and special features that can help you to make the most out of your social media campaign. Twitter has the “@” sign and hashtags, for example. Learn how to utilize these features for optimum benefit.

9.) See what your competitors are doing.

As you ease into social media, you should see what competing companies and comparable businesses are doing with their websites. By looking at the social media profiles of a few of your competitors, you should be able to get a feel for what’s working and what isn’t for them, letting you learn from their mistakes and their successes.

10.) Let people know you are on the social web.

These sites aren’t a lot of good if no one knows you are using them. People probably won’t be moved enough by the drapes they bought from Colleens Curtain Warehouse to take the time to look the business up on Facebook or Twitter. Put your social media URLs anywhere you can: on your webpage, on business cards, on marketing materials, in your email footer and more.

Did I miss out any social media tips? Please share 🙂

Kevin writes for trojanalert.net, a site emphasizing Trojan reviews.