Social media is everywhere these days, and everybody seems to be on it. In fact, over three billion people worldwide – nearly half of the Earth’s total population – were social media users in 2018. That presents a massive wealth of opportunities for any business. If your brand doesn’t yet have a social media presence, here are five good reasons why you should make establishing one a priority.
It is the best way to increase brand awareness
More people now follow brands on social media than they do celebrities, and increasingly we use social media to discover new brands to like and buy, as well as for following the brands that we already know and use. Having a social media presence is more than just advertising. It helps give your brand a human face and a distinct personality, one that customers and potential customers can interact with like a real friend.
Social media is all about making connections. When people connect with your business, they’re far more likely to use your products or services. Social media isn’t just about selling and obviously promoting your brand, as the hard sell turns people off in what’s meant to be a social space, after all. However, if you can create a prominent and likeable public image, then they’re far more likely to buy from you when the time comes.
Reach more people, and reach the right people
There is a place for outright promotion on social media, however, and paid advertising on sites such as Facebook can work wonders if you know how to use it properly. Targeted advertising via social media is becoming increasingly sophisticated, enabling you to set ever-more specific parameters in terms of the kind of person you want to see your ads. You can refine down your intended audience by their other interests and enthusiasms, location, age, gender and a myriad of other factors, meaning that you’re paying to advertise to people who will be interested in what you have to sell, not wasting your money on reaching those who are never going to buy from you anyway.
You can also track and analyze the results, to find out exactly how many people have seen your ad, and how many have responded appropriately. You can then tailor your next round of ads accordingly.
Social media is a two-way street
Using social media not only enables you to communicate your message to the public, but it also allows the public to communicate with you. Establishing a one-to-one conversation with a customer in a public forum not only helps forge a stronger connection with them, but it also strengthens the real human face of your brand in the eyes of countless other followers. Viabrance(see the official Viabrance Twitter account) is a great example of a brand using social media to genuinely connect with its public and establish a meaningful relationship above and beyond simple self-promotion.
Having an account on a social media site such as Twitter also enables you to respond to complaints in a timely and effective manner, and to put across your side of the story in the event of any negative publicity. Every business makes mistakes from time to time, so having a channel where you can be seen to be rectifying them is invaluable in terms of protecting your reputation.
Boost traffic to your website
For all its usefulness, social media isn’t where sales are closed. That is more likely to happen at your company’s website, assuming that it is enabled to allow customers to make online purchases direct. If your website is your actual store, then social media is the street outside where you’re working hard to drum up business. How do you do that? By showing and telling exactly what you’ve got to offer.
As well as advertising your products and services, however, you should also be using other methods to get people interested in visiting your site. Start conversations that they’ll want to continue, and share interesting content. Producing original content that is relevant to your brand but has value in its own right is one of the best ways to funnel social media users to your site, where they’ll be far more likely to buy from you. This can be in the form of videos, useful articles, or even just strong, entertaining images that people will want to share around.
Create a community
Creating a community around your brand is one of the most effective forms of marketing you can achieve. Make your customers feel welcome and part of a family and they’ll stay loyal to you, and will even tell their friends about the great experience you’re providing. This is the sort of publicity that’s priceless, and it’s one of the most important reasons to start building your social media profile today.