No marketing tool or technique plays a bigger role in influencing your brand perception than social media. Regularly interacting with followers, journalists, thought leaders and taste-makers can increase your profile, improve your public image and give your brand the sales it deserves.
1. Social media posts drive targeted traffic.
Whatever your industry, segment and audience, a substantial portion of your customers and leads are on social media. A recent study found that 68% of adults are Facebook users. Among 18 to 24-year-olds, 78% use Instagram and 45% are on Twitter. Even among 65 and older, 37% are social media users. Having access to all those customers helps you boost traffic, particularly for new site content. When you post a new blog or update your homepage, it can take a while to get traction with Google. That means very few customers will know the new content is there until the next time they’re searching for your product or service.
2. Using social media for business boost your site's SEO.
Search engine crawlers know which pages are consistently earning traffic and which are just floating out there, forgotten and ignored. Although your killer content strategy is the most important factor in your search rankings, driving traffic to your optimized pages will cause them to climb much faster. A lot of times, this can be as simple as re-sharing evergreen content (of course, in addition to sharing your new content when it goes live). We recommend each post be re-shared once a month — a task that doesn’t have to be as time-intensive as you might think. With Facebook’s scheduling tool or Hootsuite (for Twitter), you can set the entire month all at once and you’re done.
3. Social media marketing establishes you as an authority in your industry.
From joining Facebook groups to answering Quora questions, social media provides opportunities to demonstrate your expertise. By answering questions, giving advice and sharing relevant information, you can show your leadership.If you use this strategy regularly, it can greatly increase your brand’s reach. Your answers to common questions will come up in Google search, as well as in particular social channels. Other users will start to retweet or share to your posts or refer friends and colleagues to your social media team when they have questions. And new leads, impressed with your helpful information, will be more likely to visit your site and purchase your products. All without ever asking anyone to buy!
4. Social media marketing helps you understand your audience.
Part of what makes social channels like Twitter and Instagram effective marketing tools is the interaction you have with your customer base. By reading their tweets and status updates, you’ll gain insights into their daily lives and consumer behaviors, and answer questions such as:
These insights have obvious marketing benefits. When you understand your customers, you can write better content and more compelling posts, which leads to more traffic. But the benefits can sometimes go far beyond marketing, helping you identify customer pain points, improve sales conversions and even refine your product strategy.
5. An active social media presence builds relationships with your audience.
Consumers see Twitter, Facebook and Instagram as social networks, not marketing machines. That can be a challenge when you’re first developing your social media marketing strategy. A lot of companies instinctively take a hard sell approach, inundating their followers with discount offer codes, new product announcements and customer reviews. Then, when the account only brings in modest traffic gains, they assume social just isn’t a good fit for their brand.
But customers don’t want to be pitched to - they want authentic engagement.
When you stop seeing social as a way to pitch your customers and start seeing it as a way to connect with them, it can transform your brand. You help customers by answering their questions, entertaining and informing them with relevant content and even forming bonds over shared interests.
6. Social media ads allow targeting and retargeting.
Why advertise on social media? Because social media platforms offer highly targeted ads, which can be customized around your customers’ needs. Facebook ads, for example, can target customers by factors like age, location, education level, industry and even user behavior - e.g. the pages a user has liked.
7. Social media is key to custiomer service.
Quick customer response time isn’t optional anymore. If there’s a problem with your product or service, your customers expect you to solve it right away. Few companies are meeting those expectations. A study found that customers want responses to social media companies within four hours, yet the average response time is 10 hours.
8. Cost-effective solution for your advertising.
For an advertising strategy, social media marketing is possibly the most cost-effective way. Creating an account and signing up is free for almost all social networking platforms. But if you decide to use paid advertising on social media, always start small to see what you should expect. Being cost-effective is important as it helps you attain a greater return on investment and hold a bigger budget for other marketing and business payments. Just by investing a little money and time, you can significantly increase your conversion rates and ultimately get a return on investment on the money that you primarily invested.
9. A strong social media presence builds brand loyalty.
It’s easy to understand why: when you’re engaging the public on social media, you’re building connection and repport. You’re taking the time to provide your followers with useful information, help and entertainment, without asking for anything in return. That shows customers you value them, not just as a source of revenue, but as people. Customers will begin to see you as an entity that cares about them, and has values, personality and vision. And in a competitive market, that can make a huge difference.
10. Social media marketing is fun!
Hosting a Twitter chat to celebrate a new product launch, getting your geek on while you A/B test Facebook ads, or sharing pop-culture polls for your followers to weigh in on doesn’t just build your audience - it also gives you a chance to interact with your audience, express yourself and show what your brand is about. With all the work that goes into marketing and growing your business, getting a chance to build real connections with customers is incredibly rewarding. And when that one perfect tweet goes viral, or that Q&A session brings in a big traffic boost, you’ll feel like a rockstar!