Resource type: Blog
Why your business can’t afford to ignore social media
Today, our use of social media has become so widespread that someone, somewhere on the many networks available, may well be talking about your business. Which begs the question: wouldn’t you like the opportunity to be involved in those conversations and get your message across in the way you would like it to be presented?
In the UK, 59% of adults have at least one active social media account, with Facebook being the leading player. That’s a total of 38 million people. And, on average, they are spending nearly 90 minutes a day interacting on social media.
Social media is much more than just another advertising or PR opportunity for businesses – it is a place where your customers ‘live’ for a significant part of their daily lives.
As a result, for businesses that want to build a strong following and to have a great reputation, customers increasingly expect to be able to converse with you through social media channels.
Managed well, a social media strategy can bring huge benefits to your business:
- You can learn a great deal about what customers think about your business (and your competitors), what factors influence their buying behaviour, and pick up useful feedback on how you could improve your offer;
- If you post updates that really capture your audience’s imagination, then they will share them with their friends, greatly multiplying the reach and the impact of your message.
- The size of the audience that you can potentially connect with is mind-boggling – as is the speed with which you can reach them. (At the time of writing this, the latest Tweet from Taylor Swift has reached over 83 million people worldwide, in a matter of seconds.)
- Advertising on social media allows you to target your potential buyers very precisely, in a way that was not possible before. You can start with a modest budget and then increase your spend according to the results that you achieve, thus ensuring you get a good return on your investment.
When creating a plan for social media, it can be difficult to know how to begin. A good place to start is by asking yourself three simple questions:
- What type of customers are we aiming at and where are we most likely to find them on social media? This will begin to shape your thinking on which social media ‘platforms’ will be most important to you.
- What is the story that we want to tell these potential customers to get them interested in our business? This will determine the messages or ‘content’ that you might want to post online.
- What other businesses similar to mine have already achieved success, and how have they made use of social media? There is no harm in learning from other people’s experience!
Above all, you should view social media as a Land of Opportunity. There could be thousands of customers out there ready and willing to have a conversation with you – a conversation that could prove highly profitable for your business!