I thought I’d share the essence of a page at my company website titled Why Social Media? I’ve talked with many small business owners, professionals and entrepreneurs, and I can tell you that it’s a common question. What’s the point of engaging social media? How will it actually help my business? Answers to questions like that can sometimes tend towards being convoluted, confused and complicated sounding, but they really don’t have to be. Here’s 7 straightforward and simple reasons to get started with social media for business today.
- FAST START It’s possible to launch a business page on Facebook, get a blog going and write a post, and create a twitter account all in the matter of an hour or two. It isn’t very complicated to get started. You may not have the know how to customize everything with fancy graphics and link all the profiles together to create an integrated presence, but you should not let that hold you back. You can begin engaging now, and put yourself in the game.
- LOW COST You can get started with social media and blogging for very little or no money. This alone makes it much different than just about every other available marketing method. The investment is your time and your patience. To ensure that your time is not wasted, you must learn how to leverage social media properly for your business, and then devote more time to it on an ongoing basis. Even if you choose to use a social media marketing company to assist you, it is still among the most cost-effective method of reaching your audience.
- INSTANT INTERACTIVITY Both blogs and social media can give you nearly instant market feedback – good or bad. That provides you with the opportunity to quickly respond to questions, comments, complaints, etc. There is simply no other media platform that that kind of capability. We get all kinds of feedback through the comments on this blog, and people also leave reviews and other comments for us on Facebook and a number of other social media venues where we maintain a presence.
- SEARCH ENGINE VISIBILITY Surveys indicate that 90% or more of people begin their purchasing process in search engines. Blogs and social media make it more likely that your prospects will find you online in search engines. As you “seed” your content across the social media landscape with blog posts, articles and comments, your company, practice, product or service starts getting found in searches! That’s the beginning of a great inbound marketing strategy.
- INBOUND MARKETING This is when consumers find you. Outbound marketing is telemarketing, direct mail, email blasts, TV and print ads – all the things that buyers tend to block out more and more using modern tools like caller ID, TiVo, and spam blockers. Social media and blogs are essential inbound marketing tools for business.
- CONTENT – NOT ADS Related to the last point about inbound marketing is the idea that the content you produce using a blog or social media is likely to be something that your prospect actually desires to consume, rather than ads they find distracting and that interrupt them.
- FIRST MOVER ADVANTAGE For blogs and social media, there is definitely an advantage to moving first. If you don’t jump into the conversation, your competitors, competitor’s customers or your customers will (if they have not already) and then it can be an uphill battle to become influential in these online conversations. Start now, and claim the virtual conversation-ground for your biggest advantage.