It’s hard to ignore social media for businesses, especially when it comes to customer acquisition and brand awareness for your business. Because, after all, nearly 2.5 billion people use social media to watch stories, collect news and chat with friends.
Currently, 1.9 billion people are on Facebook. For an overview of the remaining distribution of active users on social media channels, see Statista’s Infographic:
Are you still wondering why it’s important to use social media for your business after reading this statistic? Then I’ll give you some more statistics from Sprout Social: 9 out of 10 consumers go on social media for help with a buying decision and 75% have bought a product because they’ve seen it on social media. That speaks for itself.
We’re all using our smartphones in our day-to-day lives, looking for answers to every question on Google. Therefore, it is even more important to be found on search engines. I am listing 6 reasons as to why your business needs social media. Stay tuned!
1. Answer customer questions
The digital age has also made it easier for customers to reach out directly to brands. If customers have questions and – dare I say it – complaints, then they turn to social media to reach out to companies. Why? Because they can. It’s so much easier to send a message via Twitter, Facebook or even Instagram. It’s fast, simple and effective. You don’t have to wait in line with customer service. You don’t have to send out post and wait for an answer. Social media is open to everyone, meaning everyone can connect. Through social media, everyone can be reached within minutes, and so can businesses. Here, however, good community management is required to support customers on social media and to answer inquiries.
Some may ignore this, but the danger is that if customers do not get their questions and suggestions answered, they either tend to troll on the internet elsewhere or they go to the competitor. And that’s exactly what you want to avoid!
2. Followers are your brand ambassadors
Happy customers like to share their satisfaction, especially on social media. It is much easier to express oneself with social media instead of filling out long feedback forms. Taking a picture, writing a few nice lines is quick and easy. The effort is low, but the multiplier factor is enormous. Social media makes it possible for us to share anything and everything. From our breakfast to the sports studio to the products we buy. Many people share their everyday life and their enthusiasm for their social media handles. Often enough, the company is also marked in a post – presuming, it is already on social media.
I can also give an example of myself. I love lifestyle brands. When I see a new product in the supermarket that focuses on healthy eating, such as energy balls without additives, that also tastes good, then I post about it on my Instagram Stories. However, if I can not find the company and thus can not mark it, I am often annoyed and disappointed. Because the tag allows others who look at my stories and may also be interested in the product, to click on the company’s website and explore. This is already the first starting point in the customer journey and falls into the ‘awareness phase’.
3. Great Reach
Of course, that brings me to the next point. You have already looked at the statistics for the various social media channels. This also shows you the wide reach of each channel. Of course, it does not mean that if you use Facebook, your page will reach 1.9 billion people. But the mere fact that a quarter of the population uses Facebook shows that a lot of people can be reached with it. To increase awareness, companies can use social networks to reach out to users (and thus potential customers) and steer them towards consideration and purchase decisions.
4. Relationship Building
There is no way to argue against the fact that social media if done right, is the best tool to connect with consumers and industry leaders. Twitter and Instagram are the frontrunners here in making it more convenient to engage with audiences. Here, you can really interact with users and get insights. How? By reading their tweets, their updates and seeing the type of photos they post. This will help you in understanding what interests your audience and on what they spend their time.
You can use social media to connect with non-competing businesses, in the same space, share thoughts and develop conversations. A handy tip is also connecting to journalists via Twitter. Want to land a press hit? But don’t want to land in an inbox amongst 500 other messages on a Monday morning? Then try connecting to journalists via Twitter. This way you can see what type of content they are interested in tweeting, which conversations fire them up and can directly engage with them. This is a much more personal approach than trying to go through the front door everyone else is using. Trust me on this!
5. It is easier to find you
How often do you type in a search query on Google? At least once a day? Then you are not alone.
Imagine, your potential customers are the same. They are looking – directly or indirectly – for you and should also be able to find you easily on the Internet. Google prefers sites that have a high domain authority and prefers search results from social media channels like Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and others, because of their authority. Being present on these networks will boost your site’s SEO.
For example, when I search for my favorite yoga studio in my hometown, Google first shows me its website, followed by Yelp and Facebook.
That’s why it’s always an advantage to be listed on social media, so your customers will find it even easier to find you and get more information about your business and your product.
6. It’s free!
Need I say more?
Think of all the money people used to spend on their marketing efforts back when social media channels didn’t exist. And it was that much harder to track its ROI oftentimes too.
Now, you can reach thousands and even millions of people, because everyone is using it! And the sweet deal about it? You don’t have to spend a dime! The networks are free and if you are handling your own social media management, then that’s of course, free too. However, if you hire an agency to do it, then it obviously isn’t. 😉
Social media is important to your business because everything and everybody is online. Your business needs to be represented across the social channels that fit with your brand, to regularly interact with followers who are somewhere in your buyer’s journey but also to attract people to you. Whether these are customers you want to pursue, industry leaders you want to interact with or journalists you want to approach. These marketing channels will drive real value for your business and shouldn’t be ignored!