Why Social Media Marketing is Important
As marketing evolves and changes, it seems like there are constantly new platforms and strategies being touted as the next big thing. It is impossible to keep up with all of them, but every once in a while, one comes along that actually delivers the results that they all promise. When that happens, it’s important to get on board so that your business does not appear outdated.
The most recent development that is changing how businesses interact with customers is social media marketing. Sites like Facebook and Twitter have come a long way from simply encouraging users to keep their friends and families updated on every detail of their lives. Now, they are some of the most effective tools for reaching new audiences, interacting with current and potential customers, and generating leads.
If you haven’t yet made the leap into social platforms, you may be wondering, “Why is social media marketing so important?” You may think it’s just a fad, or that it isn’t necessary for your particular business. Keep reading to find out how an effective social strategy can benefit your business. If you'd like to speak with one of our Internet marketing experts, you can reach us at 855-601-5359.
Leads are more qualified
In many marketing campaigns, most of the target recipients are possibilities at best. They may or may not be interested in your offering now, and some may never be interested. You can’t be sure they’ll take advantage of the offer or even bother to review it. This is not the case with most of your social media followers.
By marketing to users who are already fans of your business, you know that you are reaching a qualified demographic. They fact that they follow you on Facebook, Twitter, or another social platform sites means that they already want to know more.
This means they’ll respond more favorably to your posts than if they had no prior relationship with you. It also increases the likelihood that they’ll read your posts or click your links, which makes them more likely to take the desired action.
You can build a community
In most traditional (and even some online) marketing initiatives, your company is solely responsible for spreading your message. Your flyers may be passed around, and someone might occasionally forward an email newsletter, but these things don’t happen often enough to have an impact on your campaigns. With social media marketing, sharing is encouraged, which can have a huge impact on your business.
Social media makes it easy for your followers to share your promotions and content. And even if they don’t directly share your posts, they can speak positively about you and direct traffic to your social accounts or website. This is extremely valuable, as most consumers tend to trust recommendations from friends and family much more than from companies themselves.
In order to promote this kind of discussion, you can use social media to build a community around your business. Encourage customers to leave reviews (both positive and negative), interact with your posts, and have conversations with other customers. By facilitating discussion, you can build positive relationships with both current and potential customers.
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It can help (or hurt) your reputation
Traditional marketing helps companies promote their products and services without having to reveal their flaws. Social media doesn’t offer this protection, because consumers are all too happy to post their complaints about product performance, poor customer service, and other issues that can hurt a business.
This may seem like a disadvantage, but social media also provides your business the opportunity to respond to negative reviews and overcome negative publicity. In order to do this, you’ll need a mix of proactive outreach, constant monitoring, and effective crisis management.
A good content plan with frequent posts and updates takes care of the first part. The second part can be handled by one or more people who either check feeds for trends in chatter or respond to questions and comments. The third is a bit more delicate, but should involve responding to reviews professionally instead of deleting them, and apologizing for any mistakes. These are the kinds of activities that help your business establish a reliable, trustworthy brand.
They can also cushion the blow when, despite your best efforts, something goes wrong. If an employee posts unflattering stories, a product is recalled, or something negative appears in the news in relation to your business, social media can be one of your best PR tools. By addressing any and all publicity on social media, you can show that your business is dedicated to righting wrongs and addressing customer concerns.
Targeting is easy
If these benefits seem nice enough, but you’re wondering if social media marketing is cost effective, the answer is yes. Think about how much information social platforms have on their users. They know each person’s age, location, gender, interests, and friends—among many other details. Considering that you can target your ads to users based specifically on those things, social media marketing can be extremely effective.
With platforms like Facebook and Twitter, you can choose to only show your ads to the most qualified demographics. This means that you only pay for ads that are extremely targeted, and don’t have to waste money on having your ads displayed to users who are likely not interested at all. This is an extremely cost-effective method.
As an example, take a pediatric dentist practice that wants to use dental social media marketing to attract new patients. Since the practice specializes in pediatric dental care, they would use target parents in the local area. They may even add other filters, like income, to enhance their targeting.
These targeting options all help the practice reach the people that matter the most to their goals.
So if you’re wondering why is social media marketing so popular among marketers—that’s the answer. Although the ability to build a community and manage your reputation is great, it all comes down to marketing goals. And for most businesses, the goal is more customers and increased revenue.
Social media marketing is still relatively new, so it’s likely that the benefits and strategies associated with it will change over the next few years. But right now, it is one of the most effective ways to connect with qualified leads and build customer relationships.
If you want to start attracting new customers with social media, feel free to contact us. Our dedicated social team is more than happy to help you get started with the social platforms that will help you reach your business’s goals.
Ready to start using social media for marketing? Call 888.449.3239 or contact us online today to learn more about how WebFX can help with your Internet marketing challenges.