Advantages of Social Media Marketing for Small and Medium Businesses
“Is social media overrated for business?” My client asked me once.
He wanted to know whether he can really get clients and get sales by using social media marketing.
In short, is it worth all the time and energy that’s put?
His concern was genuine.
So let me put some of the stats first:
Data suggests, in 2019 the percentage of social media users will reach up to 2.77 billion.
Given the world population has grown by 7.5 billion by now, approx ¼ of this population are on social media.
This also means 1 out of 4 human beings on this planet is on some platform of social media.
What does this mean for business?
In simple words, by investing some time and little to no money you can make the most for your business.
It will not just bring sales and leads for your business but a lot more.
Social media platform once a “communication experiment” now converted into a marketing channel for brands and business.
I will unveil those benefits of using social media platforms in this post.
But that’s not it!
Instead of just stating 10 points, I will tell you the most effective tip to see that benefit turning into action for your business.
And guess what you don’t even need a big team or budget.
But before we begin, let’s get the basics right!
Let’s understand in layman’s language what is social media marketing?
What is social media marketing?
As always most websites on the internet have described social media marketing in a very lame language.
“social media marketing is a medium to increase traffic or leads through social media sites”
Wow! Who would have thought that!
So let’s modify the above definition and see what is social media marketing. Also How is social media beneficial to business
For me, social media is the best tool for many customer driven enterprises. It builds a solid connection between customers and the brand.
Campaigns run on social media platforms have more resonance as these are crafted keeping the audience in mind.
This is advantages of social media marketing over traditional marketing.
Yes, social media is great for your business. But wondering what are real benefits it can give to your business? So here you go!
Advantages of Social Media marketing For Entrepreneurs
1) Brand Awareness
Few years back when I started my digital marketing career, someone told me this:
“You may not see a high converting rate via social media for your business as you may notice with other marketing platforms (like paid, organic etc)”.
Although back then I believe this, Today I don’t agree with the statement.
It’s because if you can build a solid social media marketing strategy for your sales, you will see it in action.
This begins step by step and branding is its first step.
Around 91% of marketers claimed that by just investing a few hours on social media every day, their brand recognition has increased.
Yes you save time and money. One of the major advantages of social media marketing over traditional marketing.
The impression and messaging it can spread to your audiences can greatly enhanced through social media.
Messaging through social media allow you to talk directly to your audiences and craft your campaign accordingly.
Thus train their (customers) mind to keep your brand at the top of their mind.
This is How is social media beneficial to business.
But the brand’s messaging needs to be tailored as per each platform.
That’s where marketing comes in!
Remember, each platform is different in terms of demographics of the audience and the type of content posted.
But does that mean you have to spend hours on social media?
There are many social media management tools for engagement that makes managing different platforms an easy task.
So every brand’s messaging needs to tailored as such.
Implementing a robust social media marketing strategy can increase your brand recognition.
Want to know how can you go for it? Here you go! Few simple ways to get started with your social media marketing:
Tell your audience what makes your brand and its products/ services different from others. This is the time you actually share your passion and talk about people who have devoted their lives in building it. This is the real power of social media. If you lack in the skill of storytelling, hire someone. Branding is one of the top benefits of outsourcing social media marketing.
Use social media to showcase the work culture.
Look for interesting ways to showcase the values and beliefs of your organization. This can be as simple as posting a picture of last time your team participated in charitable activity. Reflecting a good work culture can have a strong impact on your brand. By showing your brands unique trait, attract not just conversions but also quality employees and take your business to new heights.
These strategies are easy to implement and requires no extra money. In short, one of the major advantages of social media marketing for small business.
Hand picked Articles: How to increase brand awareness using social media marketing.
2) Communication: Faster & Easier
Customers can reach the brand and communicate in a fast and easy way today, thanks to social media.
Businesses can also receive appreciation and respond to grievances more quickly.
As the line of communication improved, this has helped businesses to connect with their audiences and respond to their query quickly.
Gone are the days when the line communication was a long and slow driving one.
Today, it’s faster and easier to contact the right people which matters the most to your business.
Customers can communicate real feedback with just a few clicks.
Business can also respond to their queries in real time like never before.
One of the advantages of social media marketing over traditional marketing.
In short, building satisfied loyal customers base, something that benefits any business hugely. This is How is social media beneficial to business.
6) Influence Search Engine Ranking
The relation between social media marketing and seo is a much talked about topic in the industry.
So does social media marketing helps to boost organic search?
Short answer: Yes!
Long answer: You have to read this point to fully understand the relation between the two. It’s an indirect one.
See, Social media doesn’t work for SEO in ways many people think.
Here is some crucial data and evidence from Google employees trying to explain this relation.
In 2014, Matt cutts, the former head of Google’s webspam team, saying that Google treats Facebook and twitter like any other web pages used for search.
Thus, not counting them as a ‘ranking factor’. Here’s the proof:
So Yes the team denies any direct link between the two.
But did you notice Matt said: It’s correlation, not causation.
That’s the indirect link we are talking about here.
To be able to make the most of social media marketing, understanding this correlation is vital.
So what’s the correlation?
Well, it’s the valuable backlinks that social media gives to your content.
See, we know that social media shares are not directly served as full value back link.
But the brands, marketers and users that see your high quality content via social media may then want to link to your brand’s content.
As its high quality content, it has the potential to get popular on social media.
Result? People will like it and link it!
The backlinks created this way surely holds real value. Getting quality backlinks can hugely benefit a small business.
Given this fact, is it even a surprise why sites at the top position also have a high number of social signals?
It shouldn’t! It’s one of the advantages of social media marketing for small business.
Hand picked content: Smart ways to build quality backlinks through social media marketing.
7) Increase the Website Traffic
One of the boons of social media marketing is to attract new potential customers for your business.
Social media marketing when done correctly can bring a great source of traffic to establish a successful online business or blog.
Just imagine, if you aren’t marketing your business on social media, what will happen?
You will miss all reaching out to these audiences
Also, you will face great difficulty in reaching out to anyone outside of loyal customer base.
Different social media platforms demand different marketing strategies to make the most of it.
So use different platforms to reach the right audiences in an engaging, personalized and useful way.
This way you can engage with customers you never had chance of engaging earlier.
It’s one of the advantages of social media marketing over traditional marketing.
Social media can help you increase both website and foot traffic.
With just a few simple ways your social media marketing can drive new traffic to your website.
- Syndicate your content on every social media platform and attract a wide variety of versatile customers.
- Use the right hashtags with each post: Right hashtags can generate more exposure for your social media postings. Again, one of the advantages of social media marketing for small business. Take a look at some of the best ways of using hashtags .
- Don’t just post content but manage your social media accounts too: Posting content regularly will not help your business alone. Even if you share excellent written posts, nobody will see them until you have enough followers in your account. So how do you increase the number of followers? A simple yet effective way is to reaching out and connecting people that can be your potential reader or customer. For instance check:
- who to follow
- Are they following the account back?
- If not, then remove them and repeat this again.
Hand picked content:
Effective ways to use social media marketing to increase website traffic
8) Improved Conversion Rate
By just spending a few hours of your day on social media you can improve your conversion rate.
Wondering how does this work?
So when brands are interactive by sharing content and responding to their audiences, the brands gets personified.
Result? Positive results in sales!
Because people prefer to do business with people rather than with companies.
Over 51% of marketers have claimed that by spending time to develop a relationship with customers have showed high conversion rate.
When a brand is online, users who follow the brand trust the credibility of your business.
Once the consumer have established faith with your brand he/she is more likely it to recommend.
One of the major advantages of social media marketing for entrepreneurs.
Is it even surprising that around 66% of marketers confirm in increase in leads through social media marketing.
By throwing your brand in an ecosystem where users are definitely spending some hours will only increase your existing traffic.
7)Improved Customer Satisfaction
Social media has really ease the communication between the businesses and their customers.
Once you create a voice to your business through social media marketing it can help build a solid relationship with customers.
Wondering How effective is social media marketing?
See, when you take the time out to respond to your customers’ feedback, it humanize your company.
Customers appreciate a personalized response and value it over automated response.
A brand that takes out time to compose personalized messages to customers will tend to be seen in a positive light.
Even if responding to customer complaints. Check this out!
This way you can build a strong base of loyal customers.
Loyal customers spend more time with your business and likely to get you more business.
Again, one of the advantages of social media marketing for entrepreneurs
Unlike other marketing channels, social media marketing is the cheapest of all.
Signup and creating a profile on any social media channel is free.
Even the paid promotion on the social media platforms are low cost compared to other advertising channels.
This means you can see a higher ROI without spending too much. Plus you can allot a big budget for other marketing channels.
Also, increase your social media marketing budget with time as needed.
8) Gain Market Insights
On the top level social media is a perfect place to post content and see it going viral.
On a secondary level, the same platform can be used to gain valuable insights.
By directly reaching out to your audience you can know customers interest that you may not otherwise be aware without social media presence.
In short, social media can work as a research tool to gain information related to your industry. This How effective is social media marketing.
Here are some of the tips to get started
- To gain insightful aspect, use additional tools to analyze your audience demographics. It’s one of the advantages of social media marketing for small business. You can segment your content based on topic and find out which type of content gets high impression.
- Use tools to measure conversions on different posts shared on social media platforms to develop a strategy for beating your competitors. A smart way to get competitive advantage of social media marketing.
9) Reputation Management
Gone are the days when businesses were simply selling products to their customers without engaging them.
That was the time consumer couldn’t raise their voice in a powerful way.
Cut to today, social media has changed things drastically.
Regardless of the business size your prospects are talking about your business.
They are tweeting about your products/services, posting on Facebook their experience with your brand and leaving comments on your blog. This is How effective is social media marketing.
So what are they talking about your brand?
How are the reviews/ratings impacting your business?
How to launch a strategy to use it for your benefit?
If you don’t have an answer for these questions, you need a robust social media marketing in place.
In the digital era, social media sites serve as review and rating website.
Especially for B2C businesses.
By implementing a good social media marketing strategy you can monitor your online reputation regularly. These are just a few advantages of social media marketing for entrepreneurs
Good reputation management is not about reacting but to understand whether the reaction is needed or not. Plus, if needed, then, when and how.
Consider this Tweet:
confession.. I hate McDonalds breakfast.
- Alex Goot (@alexgoot) March 13, 2013
So how should they go for it? Here are two options
- a) pretend people are not talking and not respond at all?
- b) get aggressive or defensive to protect their brand?
Well, none of this works. Infact, there is a possibility that the news will be picked up by the local news.
And in the online world negative attention can cost more harm.
So the best way is to understand what’s the sentiment there and try to address the customer query in an appropriate way.
In the online world your reputation can be made or break with reviews and ratings.
So how to get started?
- Use social media monitoring tools that allows your brand succeed in the online world. These tools can help you in: Knowing your audience, their wants and in understanding what to deliver
- Follow a proactive approach to monitor your public reputation on a regular basis and not just deal a specific episode.
- Monitor your brand mentions on different social media sites and take action accordingly
- Search potential customers & serve them as per the needs
- Monitor your competition and learn from their mistakes. Plus pick up from where they have left. A clever way to get competitive advantage of social media marketing.
- Lastly, manage public relations and criticism on-time appropriately.
This is how social media marketing advantage can help your brand to succeed.
Hand picked content Ways to monitor online reputation management
10) Funnel development
One thing I have to admit that in the early days of career when I was learning digital marketing, I faced difficulty in managing time and resources to social media.
I limited my social media marketing to just posting and sharing the content.
Yes it still benefit me raising awareness.
But hey, what about the lead and sales?
Yes, that’s what I have missed back then and surprisingly I see many people doing the same even today.
If you think simply positing the content will automatically benefit your sales graph. You are wrong.
You will get low or no conversions
Sure, awareness is great for your brand, but then why not take one more step.
Instead for simply posting content why not build a solid social media marketing strategy that guarantees conversion too.
In short by just devoting little time you can get high sales over your competitors. That’s how you get competitive advantage of social media marketing.
Let’s see how can you get this started
Here’s how social media marketing can help at each stage: From Awareness to Advocacy
Stage 1 (Discovery + Interest) Quick tips for these different stages:
Do you know 84.9% people have to see something on social media more than once to make the purchase decision? Yes, it’s true!
Given this fact multi channel and multi level marketing is imperative. So how to do this? Here you go!
Stage 2: (Engagement)
- Publish the same message on every social media platform
- Redraft your message with new post and share it again
- Interlink all your social media channels to keep a bird’s eye on your brand awareness progress.
The second stage is important.
This is when you need to engage with the users who have taken any action on your post. You need to interact, comment and nurture these leads.
Few tips to get this started:
Stage 3 (ACTION + ADVOCACY)
All the above tips will definitely help you in building your sales funnel effective.
But remember you are dealing with cold traffic that you need to develop with relationship first.
I have seen people trying to sell $2k product via social media and they end up selling zero or few copies.
They miss the importance of generating huge number of leads.
This approach is simply superb and make you see tangible efforts in some time. So
Here’s how you can go for it!
- Research and monitor your better known competitor. Study their weak point and show the audiences how you are different. This is how you get Build content around your competitors weak points:competitive advantage of social media marketing.
- Create social media landing page. You ultimate goal is to bring user land to your site. Use tips to craft effective social media landing page.
- Focus on building links especially if you deal in B2B
- Create a sub-product that can help you in generating leads for your brand or create an additional income.
For instance: position you brand as the niche authority or ultimate resource place for the particular industry. This can be used as a sub product for the bottom of the sales funnel.
Alright, that was a lot! You now know 10 major perks of indulging in effective social media marketing strategy.
So you should start investing time creating strategies for social media.
Search where your target audience is spending most of the time and start working on the platform first
There’s nothing that must hold you back. You have the information that you require
Will you change your social media marketing strategy and reap its benefits?
Do you have think we missed any other advantage of social media marketing? If yes, then tell us your answers in the comment section below.
Originally published at https://www.adstriangle.com on May 9, 2019.