5 Ways Your Small Business Should Use Social Media Marketing

By providing a way to connect with your customers like never before, social media marketing is quickly becoming the future of marketing. It not only provides an easy way to engage your customers, it’s less expensive than traditional marketing … provides better customer service … and can help you build loyalty with your customers. Read on to see how your small business should be using social media marketing to make the biggest impact your business.

1. Generate New Leads

ThinkstockPhotos-515277671Did you know that the average Facebook user has 130 confirmed friends? That means Facebook gives you an enormous potential for lead generation. Let’s say you own a cupcake business and post on Facebook that you’ve just created the perfect Key Lime Cupcake and are giving free samples. Every time one of your customers hits the “like” button you have the potential to reach each of his or her 130 friends. If 10 of your customers “like” what you’ve posted, your message will now reach up to 1,300 new customers.

2. Customer Feedback

People love to share their opinion online. Many of your customers probably blog and tweet about your business already. If you own a restaurant, they ThinkstockPhotos-481571851may tweet that your tiramisu is great but the service is atrocious. If you own an accounting firm, they may post on Facebook that they’re furious your office was closed the Sunday before tax day. If you don’t have a social media presence, you’re missing all that great feedback. But if you use social media well, you’ll be able to instantly gauge what your customers love about your business and what you may need to change.

Getting honest customer feedback used to be difficult and expensive. Companies had to offer prizes or discounts to entice customers to fill out a survey form.

Social media marketing has now changed all that. Make sure you’re taking full advantage of its potential.

3. Customer Loyalty

Today’s consumer can often find a product or service that’s cheaper than yours.

They can log onto ScoutMob to find 50% off a restaurant or use Groupon to find a killer deal on dental work. You can’t expect to hold onto customers if you’re relying on price or customer service alone.

If you want to retain your customers, it’s essential that they feel loyal to you. They need to feel that you, your company, or your brand is a part of their life. Social media allows you to stay in close contact with your customers. By sharing helpful information with them and making it easy for them to interact with you, they’ll feel an attachment to your brand that will keep them coming back.

4. Better Customer Service

You hate paying staff to man the phones at all hours to answer customer service calls, and your customers hate being put on hold. Social media allows you to provide better customer service at a lower cost. It also allows you to respond to problems much quicker than traditional phone or written service. Online, your customer service reps can deal with more than one client at the same time and multiple customers can view one answer. Many online customers are also happy to help one another. If you provide a way for them to interact with one another on your site, they’ll share tips and tricks among themselves, which provides savings to you and valuable insight into what’s important to them.

5. Lower Advertising Costs

ThinkstockPhotos-491249498The typical cost of a one-year, half-page Yellow Page ad is between $10,000 and $20,000. A campaign that includes television, radio, and billboards is many times more expensive. Even if you’re working with a top developer, the cost of developing a social media campaign will be a fraction of the cost of traditional advertising.

The Future of Marketing

Companies that don’t have a social media presence will be at a huge disadvantage in the coming years. Sixty years ago companies that invested in television advertising created brands that are still strong today. Fifteen years ago companies that created user-friendly Websites grew at phenomenal rates. Your company and your brand will have an incredible advantage over the competition if you harness the potential of social media marketing.

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