Social Media For Your Small Business and Choosing the Right Platform
Why social media marketing is important?
As we know that social media is a very powerful tool, especially when it comes to brand awareness, aside from promoting your brand it helps in creating relationships with customers. Social media can help you meet several business goals such as:
– Increases awareness of the organization/brand: You may have seen other brands especially the ones you follow share their products/services on social platforms. By sharing the contents of your brand you make it easier for people to find the products and services you offer.
-Increases your sales: attracting and creating awareness of your brand through social media will definitely generate successful leads.
-It offers great feedback to customers: social media provides a vital role in marketing and creating relationships with customers as it gives you more valuable insight into customer’s behavior and interest.
-Keeps cost down: posting on social media is free, eventually you may want to expand your followers who are interested in your services and make more sales. These social media platforms offer paid adverts, there are no limits to spending on paid adverts – it all depends on your budget.
– Increases traffic to your website: for brands who go beyond just sharing content on social media and have their website listed on their social media pages/profiles, this also lets you get traffic sent to your website as your followers tend to visit your website when you share content from your social media that contains a link to your website. (Very good for bloggers).
-Improves search engine ranking: though social media do not have a direct impact on ranking. It can have a significant impact on search engines such as Google and Bing, the more you share content and engage with your customers the more SEO (Search Engine Optimization) ranking will be and also helps you by providing better and richer content on your social media.
other importance includes:
– Greater favorable perceptions of your brand.
– Identification of new product or service opportunities.
– Able to develop targeted marketing activities for your brand.
– Identification of positive and negative comments to help you boost your relationship with customers and deliver rich content.
How do I choose the best social media platform for my brand?
Choosing the right social media platform/channel depends on the nature of your brand’s product/services or content you provide. If your brand is focused on consumer products or information, then Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram would be a good platform for you to choose.
If your passion is writing business-oriented or professional topics, then a platform like LinkedIn would be suitable for this, as this platform has the ability to reach a more B2B-oriented audience.
There are other platforms such as Instagram, Snapchat, Pinterest, and YouTube which are extremely visual. The choice is yours depending on your goals – for example, brand-building is something that would work well with a visual-oriented platform.
The benefits of each social media platform
As totally inclined creatures we are, we have embraced technology that connects us with one another. There are over 200+ social media platforms increasing numbers of users who signup and use these social media platforms. However, a few of them stand out based on their popularity and the number of active users on these social media platforms. The number has exceeded more than 2billion within just five years while they weren’t even a billion back in 2010.
-Facebook: Worldwide use of Facebook exceeds 1 billion people. This is larger than the population of many nations. More than 50% of active users log on every day. Over 2 billion posts are liked and commented on each day and 250 million photos uploaded daily by these active users. Facebook is also available in 70 languages. You don’t have to put in much thought or it’s a no-brainer that a business should have Facebook for its social media presence with this large audience of users. Introducing them with products update or any business changes and setup stores and offers. Users of this platform are between 18 – 49 upward.
-Twitter: keeping an eye on competitors marketing efforts is a great thing Twitter can offer. You can follow this competitor or search them to see what they’re posting, their retweets, and comments. It is also,o a free way to monitor conversations happening about your business, likes and dislikes all kind of ideas to help your improve and be successful. Users of this platform are also between 18 – 49 upward.
-Instagram: This platform’s advantage over others is its all visuals. It is the second most accessed besides facebook which is owned by the same company. Over 1billion active users and over 400 million Instagram users update. It offers users some great visual updates, like “Instagram stories” which are visible for 24hrs (Very great for promotion and announcement. Nearly 50% of Instagram users are between 18 – 44.
-Pinterest: This platform also is visuals, it connects people with interest, cooking, tailoring, housing, photography, etc. Businesses can promote and explore their interests by allowing them to save pins on virtual bulleting boards. It is also the only platform currently that supports visual search. Users of this platform are between the age of 18 – 50.
Things to bear in mind when running your business on social media and be successful
Consistency and valuable content: content needs to be creative, original, controversial, trend-setting to effectively engage your audience. With so many people competing for your customer’s attention if you don’t provide great value they will quickly see out others that do.
Engage and build relationships: the most important thing about social media marketing is to engage and build relationships. Online relationships on social media are actually no different than the offline relationships we are used to building. With regard to social media pages for businesses, many people mistakenly believe that if
someone likes your page and becomes a fan then every update you post to your page will appear in their home feed. This used to be the case, however, unlike Facebook and some others it now uses an algorithm called Edge Ranking which determines who gets to see what and by whom. Basically, it rewards engagement.
Be active: show activeness on your online presence for your brand, do not update today and give like 4days or more for the next update. It will be advisable you post 3 or more posts per day. Get collective ideas from other well-known brands or your customer’s feedbacks to keep your followers engaged and active.[Tweet “Note that, a strong social media presence helps you build brand loyalty and credibility.”]
Use hashtags for your posts: Hashtags are used by social media platforms to gain high visibility of their posts, it allows users who are not following you but share the same interests to find you or the services you offer. They (hashtags) are form of user-generated tagging that enables cross-referencing of content sharing a subject or them.