Social Media is no longer something that can be ignored. The explosion of social media is a phenomenon that still amazes me in terms of how quickly it has infiltrated our lives. The internet has made the world so much smaller, not only connecting people from every country, and continent, but providing us all with opportunities beyond our wildest dreams! The potential of social media is mind-blowing, and if you are not connecting with it, then you are going to be left behind and miss out on opportunities.
Let’s take a look at the top five reasons your business needs social media:
The potential, for gaining new customers is huge. It has a reach of millions, and if you market your business in the right way, you can connect to thousands of new clients. If your business video or post goes viral, there is the potential to get in front of MILLIONS of people. This may sound delusional, but it has happened to others, so why not you? These connections will never happen offline applying traditional advertising.
People talk. When they like something, they tell people. Having a presence online means that they could be talking about you! Here’s an example; you run a cupcake making company. You make some great cupcakes for the birthday party of one of your friend’s children. The cupcakes are so great that other parents ask her where she got them. She passes on your information. You get six new clients from that one birthday, who then pass your information to other impressed parents, and so on. Now, imagine that online, and it’s not just a few parents but hundreds or thousands of followers on a Parents Help Group. You can create a buzz that gets people talking. Word of mouth is a great way to promote your business. People trust the opinions of those they know. Virtual word of mouth is much more powerful than non-virtual.
Being online means people can interact with you and your business. You can build a reputation, and make your business more accessible. The ability to engage with existing and potential customers is so important, and through social media this is easier than ever before. Customers can gain a sense of who you are, and what kind of business you operate. What takes hours in the non-virtual world can be done online in minutes, and you don’t have to be involved. For example, having countless followers and positive feedback on your profile demonstrates that you and your business can be trusted.
Social Media usage boosts the likelihood of you appearing higher up on search engines, Search Engine Optimisation [SEO]. Having profiles and social media activity lets Google know your site is worthy of a mention. Your competition is using it and you should be too.
It’s free! This is the biggest advantage of social media to your business. It doesn’t cost anything to start a Facebook profile. To have someone recommend you is free! You have access to potentially thousands of customers, for free! You can have all the benefits of social media that I have mentioned, for free! Even if you decide to outsource your online marketing, it will cost a fraction of the cost of traditional offline marketing and advertising.
It’s about trust. People naturally assume that every business has a website, and soon people will naturally assume that they are on Facebook or Twitter, or similar. It’s a way of giving you credibility. Have you ever used a directory site like yell.com to look for a specific type of company and some of them don’t have websites? You begin to wonder if they are legitimate, are they worthwhile if they haven’t even got a website? Most people will choose a company that has an online presence because that is what is most reassuring.
Ultimately, this is the future of marketing, and if your business is not connected then it risks being left behind.