Social Media for business can build brand, generate new customers, drive sales, shorten product cycles and very important for small business – it levels the competitive playing field. Here are 15 reasons why you should be using social media to build your business:
- Generate New Customers. According to Hubspot’s 120 Awesome Marketing Stats, Charts & Graphs, 62% of companies find customers via LinkedIn, 52% of companies find customers via Facebook and 44% of companies find customers via Twitter.
- Social Media is a Sales Multiplier. Every loyal customer you find on social media has their own social network. If you’re successful in earning their trust and loyalty they can become your champion and spread the word via their own social channels.
- Decrease time to market. It’s remarkable how much development cycles are reduced in both time and cost by simply listening directly to your customer’s needs and wants on social media.
- Establish brand personality. People like to do business with people – not with companies. You set your brand’s personality by the manner in which you communicate with your customers. If this is done with an engaging and personable tone you build loyal relationships. If you speak at your customers in corporate speak you will find building a loyal relationships extremely difficult and your brand personality suffers as a result.
- Build trust, reputation and authority. Social media gives you a platform upon which to impart your knowledge and expertise. If done right it builds your trust and reputation and establishes you as a thought leader in your field. Wouldn’t you rather do business with someone you trust, has an excellent reputation and by the way knows what they’re talking about?
- Become a hero! One of the biggest fears my clients have is that building a social media presence will open them up to criticism. My response to that is always “yes it will and it gives you a great opportunity to become a hero.” If one of your customers has an issue with your product or service then deal with it head on and in a timely fashion. Apologize if need be and go that extra mile to provide them a solution. Word will soon spread about how you care about your customers which will in turn build you an even larger loyal customer base.
- Recruit evangelists. There is no better salesperson than someone who’s enthusiastic and passionate about your products. The best place to find them is in your social community. They’re easy to spot. They’re the ones jumping at the chance to answer people’s questions. They’re the ones excited about finding a new application for your product. They’re the ones bombarding you with ideas for upgrades. Reach out and hire them. You’ll soon find a productive role for them in your company. Passion and enthusiasm goes a long way to building brand and sales.
- More website traffic. You have a website right! If not I can certainly help you there. All your social media channels act as funnels to your website. It’s then up to your website to convert them into customers. The more traffic you get the higher up the search rankings you go.
- Greater visibility in search results. Both Google and Bing are indexing and ranking social media content. What this means in practice is that your social media profiles plus any content relevant to a search query will also be listed in the search engine results. This gives you much more of an opportunity to gain multiple listings resulting from a specific search query. The more listings you have the greater the chance a prospect will turn into a customer.
- Identifying your products pain points. Your social community is an invaluable product development resource. All products have pain points. These are aspects of your product that your customer has difficulty in using or understanding, or don’t work as advertised. Your community will definitely let you know in real time what these pain points are. This gives you the opportunity to make the necessary changes very quickly and keep your customers updated on progress.
- Identifying your competitors’ pain points. Sign up for your competitors’ social media channel and you’ll soon discover where their pain points are. You’ll also discover where they’re successful. Valuable information you can use to make your own products better.
- Brand management. Actively monitoring your brand where it features in social conversations gives you the opportunity to address any negative comments in a timely fashion.
- Educate your audience. This is a two-way street. By listening closely to your customers and learning from their experiences with your product you can build FAQs and tutorials to make it easier for them to get the most out of your product.
- Educate yourself. There is no greater resource for new product ideas than your customers. Proactively maintaining an open dialogue will help you capture the best ideas. A much more efficient and quicker process than the traditional early product development cycle.
- Your customers expect you to be there. If your competitors have very active social media channels you need to have an active presence too. If you don’t your customers will wonder where you are and your relevancy to them will diminish.
These are just some of the ways that social media can help your business. It is by no means a complete list so please feel free to fill in any gaps. The bottom line is that every business need some form of active social media presence in today’s competitive environment. It builds your brand and drives sales in a much faster and more efficient manner than the traditional off-line methods. If you need advice on how to get started contact me for a free consultation.
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