10 Ways Social Media can Improve Your Small Business

Social media marketing is the process of building your brand equity and awareness via social media channels like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and YouTube.

Social media is all about relationship building, the sooner you start, the sooner you will be able to start growing your audience. One other thing is that your competitors are already involved in social media, which means your potential social media traffic and conversions are being poached. If you don’t want your competitors to reap all the benefits these tools have to offer, then you need to invest in building a social media strategy for your business ASAP.

Below are 10 ways social media can improve your business in the shortest period of time.

1. Decreased marketing costs

If you can lend just one hour a day to developing your content and syndication strategy, you could start seeing the results of your efforts. Start small and you would never have to worry about going over your marketing budget, as even paid advertising through Facebook and twitter is relatively cheap. Once you get a better feel for what to expect, you can increase your budget and increase your conversion correspondingly.

2. Richer customer experiences

At its core, social media is a communication tool like email and phone calls. Every customer interaction you have on social media is an opportunity to publicly demonstrate your customer service level and enrich your relationships with your customers. For example, if your customer complains about your product on Facebook, you can immediately address the comment, apologize publicly and then take action to make it right. It’s personal experiences that lets customers know you care about them.

3. Higher brand authority

When people want to compliment, brag or complain about a product or service, where do they turn to? You guessed it right; Social Media.

Interacting with your customers regularly is a show of good faith for other customers, when your customers post your brand name, new audience members will want to follow you for updates. The more people that are talking about you on social media, the more valuable and authoritative your brand will seem to new users.

4. Higher conversion rate

Social media is a place where brands can act like people do, and this is important because people like doing business with other people; not with companies. Studies have shown that social media has a 100% higher lead-to-close rate than outbound marketing.

Simply building your audience on social media can improve conversation rates on your existing traffic because a higher number of social media followers tend to improve trust and credibility in your brand, representing social proof.

5. More opportunities to convert

Every post you make on social media is an opportunity for customers to convert. Every blog post, image, video, or comment you share is a chance for someone to react, ad every reaction could lead to a site visit and eventually a conversion. When you build a following, you have access to new customers, recent customers and old customers and you will be able to interact with all of them, while not every interaction will lead to a conversion, every positive interaction with your brand increases the likelihood of an eventual conversion.

6. Improved brand loyalty

Companies should take advantage of the tools social media gives them when it comes to connecting with their audience. According to a report by Texas Tech University, brands who engage on social media channels enjoy higher loyalty from customers because a strategic and open social media plan could prove more influential in morphing consumers into become brand loyalists.

7. Increased brand recognition

Every opportunity you get to increase your brand’s visibility is valuable. Social media networks are new channels for your brand’s voice and content because they make it easier and more accessible for new and existing customers to get in contact with you.

8. Improved customer insights

Social media gives you an opportunity to get to know your customers in ways that were previously impossible. Social media gives you an opportunity to gain valuable information about what your customers are interested in and how they behave. For example, you can monitor user comments to see what people think of your business directly.

9. Better search engine rankings

Being active on social media could act as a “brand signal” to search engines that your brand is legitimate, credible, and trustworthy. That means, if you want to rank for a given set of keywords, having a strong social media presence could be almost mandatory. It is no longer enough to regularly update your blog, ensure optimized title tags and meta description and distribute links pointing back to your site.

10. Increase inbound traffic

Every social media profile you add is another path leading back to your site and every piece of content you share on those profiles is another opportunity for a new visitor. The more quality content you share on social media, the more inbound traffic you will generate, and more traffic means more leads and more conversions.

Realistically, you don’t have anything to lose by getting involved in social media. The amount of time and money it takes to create your profiles and start posting is usually minimal, compared to other marketing channels. A minimum of 7 hours every week and a few hundred dollars is all it takes to establish your brand’s presence.

Published in Marketing, Social Networking