13 Reasons Why Using Social Media For Business is Non Negotiable!
Is there ever a time when having a social media presence is an option? I believe the answer is no, in this day and age as a business you can't afford NOT to leverage social media. Here are my 13 Reasons why using social media for business is not negotiable.
1. Social proof
Consumers are more and more savvy about who and where they purchase products from and people will take the time to research online before making a purchase. By having a social media presence that is both engaging and engaged it helps reassure clients that your business is reputable and can be trusted.
2.Humanizes your brand
Copying and pasting marketing lingo into social media just doesn't work. You have less space to do it and the environment is completely different. Social media gives your business the opportunity to reach out and actually connect with your audience. No Stuffy corporate policies. Real one to one relationships.
3. Builds Your Sphere of influence
Your sphere of influence is the people in and around your brand that you interact with. There will always be key people of influence in your niche so spend some time getting to know them, watch and learn how they engage their audience and then start engaging with them. When you manage to develop a relationship with these key people of influence it impacts on your sphere of influence, people will see it and this too will help build your credibility online.
4. Your competition is using it.
Your industry or niche is represented on Facebook and Twitter. It is. If you don't believe me go to Google and do a search for: "Your niche" + "Facebook" and see what comes up.
- In 2011 Emarketer estimated that Facebook's revenue from advertising was $3.8 billion and that could be $5.2 billion in 2012.
- Emarketer also said that almost 40% of small businesses that sell on Facebook say it is their soles sales channel.
Companies are paying a lot of money to advertise and grow their brands in social media. That suggests that using social media for business is working. If you aren't already, then you should be.
5. Your target audience is using it.
Think of Facebook as a shopping mall, where people are living a virtual social life, being present in this mall is one of the smartest moves you can make for your small business.
The old saying goes that, "numbers don't lie" so here are the official statistics from Facebook about usuage.
- We had 845 million monthly active users at the end of December 2011.
- Approximately 80% of our monthly active users are outside the U.S. and Canada.
- We had 483 million daily active users on average in December 2011.
- We had more than 425 million monthly active users who used Facebook mobile products in December 2011.
- Facebook is available in more than 70 languages
Of course these numbers are for Facebook only and don't include any of the other social media sites which have hundreds of millions more of users. What would it mean to your business if you had 8 new customers? That is less than one millionth of the percentage of users on Facebook. Yes, there are certain pitfalls you need to ignore when using small business social media marketingbut surely it is worth trying.
6. Google counts social sharing when ranking.
The whole concept of the internet is a web. If you think of a web there are many layers or paths to a single point. The more paths, called links, to this single point the more authoritive, or stronger the point becomes.
When many different people on social media refer to your content, your website, your articles ,or your video it means that those individual people find your content useful, entertaining, informative or all of the above. When this happens the search engines pay attention and in return use this as a factor to provide better search engine placement for your content.
Click on the following link to learn more about the social media effect on seo.
7. Provides great brand exposure
If your brand can really embrace the nature of social media, through providing great content and engaging and interacting with your audience in a manner that leads to building a great community that people want to be involved with, then your brand will get a great boost.
8. It's the next generation of Word of mouth marketing
What better way to interact with new potential clients than via people who have already experienced what your brand has to offer? When your social media presence starts to generate conversation and reactions such as; likes, shares, tweets, pins or whatever else it maybe then you get their approval. This social recommendation is visible to that persons individual following and acts as a great gateway for their friends or family to get to know more about your brand.
9. Social Media Networking sites have high Page Rank
Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn have high Page Rank. This means that in terms of the search engines like Google and Bing that they carry authority and therefore get good rank in search results. Having a well optimized social media profile on Facebook or LinkedIn can help you command search result places for your brand name or search terms related to your business, providing more ways for clients to get in contact with you.
10. Provides Transparency
Social media is an open book. If someone likes you then great, everyone can see it. If someone doesn't like you and mentions something negative about your brand or experience then this too is available to the community.
Many successful businesses that leverage social media use this as an advantage to show how switched on they are by replying and finding a resolution and closing that loop. This shows to the watching community that your business has integrity and values interaction, criticism and debate and more importantly knows how to deal with it.
11. Opens Up Conversation
The users of your brand or experience are the best people to learn from when it comes to making things better. By invoking questions about the usability of your experience you will get an understanding as to what clients are looking for. You will also be able to gauge how to improve things in the future. Social media for small business success is truly about listening as opposed to marketing!
Conversations act like a magnet; when one starts people prick up their ears and take notice. This can have a knock on effect where more and more people jump into the conversation. This could help to get your content and brand spread wide and far.
12. Aids Customer Service
Many businesses face the same questions time and time again when it comes to customer service. Use your social media outlets to answer those questions. By doing it this way you can highlight to your community that you are available but also get other people within the community to provide answers and support to new members who have perhaps experienced the same issues themselves.
13. Brand Exposure
Everybody wants to expose their brand to a larger audience. The more targeted people who are aware of your brand, the greater the chance you have of turning those into leads, paying clients and brand advocates.
In conclusion, using social media for business today is as important as learning how to use email for business 15 years ago. We need to embrace social media; the possibilities it brings and the challenges it presents in order to remain profitable and, most importantly, relevant in an ever increasing social world.