Social media can feel like such an established part of the online marketing furniture these days that you might have forgotten just how crucial it is for a small business like yours, and for what reasons.
In particular, it can be easy to presume that your cafe, hotel, restaurant or similar small firm is doing just fine if it simply exists on social media, perhaps sharing a new blog post or other interesting link from time to time.
Alas, social media is too important to treat as a mere optional extra or ‘nice to do’. The statistics tell their own story – according to Rose McGrory Social Media Ltd, there are estimated to be some 32 million Facebook user accounts in the UK alone, with about 78% of the country’s over-18s using the platform. That’s just one of the many popular platforms out there.
Such networks boast a huge audience that your company could be missing out on if you aren’t active on them, especially if certain competitors of yours are. Here are a few more good reasons to beef up your social media output if it’s in any way lacking.
It’s great for building relationships
The term ‘social’ should perhaps make it obvious, but there are still too many businesses that are failing to appreciate just how much the major social platforms can help them to grow by enabling them to get in touch with more of the most relevant people.
Depending on whether your company is a B2B (business to business) firm or a B2C (business to customer) one, you may use social media to interact directly with ordinary customers, or perhaps to extend your professional networks or develop your reputation as an authority in your field, including in response to the latest news in your industry.
It enables you to enhance customer service
Providing the best possible customer service is such an important thing to do if you want to power your business’s growth. But it’s much harder to appreciate exactly what’s right and wrong with your present customer service unless you have an instant and easy means of receiving feedback from customers.
Social media can provide that. Simply having a Facebook or Twitter profile gives your business a channel through which to swiftly respond to and resolve customer queries. However, you can also use it to monitor any random and untagged mentions of your brand that could further assist you with the continual improvement of your customer service offering.
It allows you to boost brand recognition
The greater the amount of social media content your brand produces, the greater the opportunity there is to capture the attention of potential customers.
We aren’t necessarily just talking here about people who may have never before heard of your brand. Indeed, the best business opportunities may be from those who see your brand on social media and recognise it from elsewhere.
When the content that such target customers see your brand producing is also valuable and relevant to them, it’s even more likely that they will trust you enough to decide to buy from you.
With social media, more really can be more
When you want to attract more business from more people who are also more loyal to your brand, there are still few marketing channels with the sheer effectiveness of social media.
However, even something as potentially powerful as your firm’s Facebook or Twitter profile does not exist in isolation. Link it up to a similarly attractive, informative and easy to navigate main website, while also taking advantage of other means of online promotion such as Groupon business advertising, and you’ll be able to make your firm’s social media activity even more impactful.