In recent years, the rise of social media has become phenomenal on a global scale. From personal use in order to connect with friends and family to utilising it as a platform for your business to expand, it is a fantastic opportunity to increase audience reach, enhance customer interaction and to network in ways never seen before.
Although social media is now at the forefront of many business’, especially regarding marketing strategy in order to positively impact upon business goals, there are many organisations that are reluctant to use social media due to a couple of reasons. Firstly, the business may have been successfully established for many years and believes it works smoothly without incorporating social media. Secondly, the business is simply out of touch with this new generation of digital communication and does not know why or how to encompass it into their business strategy.
Here is a list of reasons in order to help understand why social media is an easy, current and effective tool to help drive your business to success:
Social Media Platforms – Overview
With an astonishing 1.65 billion monthly active users (Wikipedia reference) Facebook has rapidly grown to become the biggest social networking site in the world. The majority of Facebooks revenue comes from advertising, with many small businesses benefitting from advertising on Facebook as it is a cheap and easy way to get quick results.
By creating a Facebook page for your business you can gain insights into your customers/ followers with information telling you their location, age, gender, ethnicity and how many people you are reaching. This can help you establish your target audience and who you are currently attracting. You can also find out what time of day your followers are most actively online and viewing your posts so you can post at the most optimum time. All of this is readily available to you without doing any of the work yourself!
You can boost a post by putting a spend behind it, which will make the post appear higher in the news feed therefore reaching more people with a better chance of your chosen audience seeing it. Facebook allows you to target posts to certain people, for example, if a sportswear company wanted to promote a new men’s football boot they could target people based on their gender (male), age and interest in football and sport.
With only 140 characters per tweet, twitter is a lot more concise than Facebook, also allowing you to have a bit more fun with short and sweet messages.
Many businesses use twitter as a great way to interact with current and potential customers. As it is so popular, many customers use it as an informal way to contact businesses regarding any questions or complaints, where they can get an answer quickly and easily.
Twitter can be used as a different approach to customer service which is an extremely useful way to build upon meaningful customer relationships as you can be personal and relatable whilst responding instantly. Twitter allows you to quickly adjust business activities due to instant reactions from your customers which systematically increases customer satisfaction. Gaining you an advantage over competitors who do not use Twitter.
Businesses should be following potential and current customers by searching for profiles within their demographic. In order to create brand awareness and conversation you should favourite/ retweet and reply to relevant accounts. The more socially active you are the more successful.
Top tips to include in an effective tweet are;
Instagram is a social media networking site that allows you to instantly share photographs and videos to the public. Using Instagram for your business will create a buzz and awareness surrounding your brand amongst a typically younger, fresher and creative generation.
Instagram is an exciting tool to market your brand through worldwide trends such as #ThrowbackThursday, #MondayBlues and #SelfieSunday. Businesses should employ these trends and find a hashtag to participate by using relevant images for their brand as part of their marketing strategy.
As Instagram is now owned by Facebook, you can promote your business on Facebook using Instagram as a duo offering. Businesses can post their photo or video onto Instagram and share it on Facebook and boost the post into paid media, therefore reaching a much wider audience using two different platforms.
The most professional of social networking sites, LinkedIn allows you to connect with like-minded business people and colleagues to help establish your business within a professional environment. Whether you have met someone briefly or are long term business partners, by connecting on LinkedIn you are expanding your horizon for new business prospects.
LinkedIn is becoming ever popular within HR departments as it is a useful and easy platform to recruit potential employees as the site allows you to advertise jobs which will attract suitable candidates for your company.
You can build up your company page on LinkedIn by posting interesting blogs, update your status with links to relevant and useful content and asking/ answering questions. Having a company page is a great way to extend your reach and to build a credible status within your industry.
By adopting a few of these approaches to your business strategy, you will be immersing yourself into a pool of opportunities, keeping you at the top of the game and hopefully seeing fast results to help generate new business leads whilst obtaining your current consumers.