Social media is an effective marketing communications platform that can really help your brand get noticed.
Facebook, Twitter, Vimeo, LinkedIn, Instagram and Snapchat (the list goes on and on) are ever increasing in popularity. They have become natural forums for people to share opinions, information and ideas. More and more, Social media channels might be the main (or even the only) place where people are interacting with brands.
They also have the potential to reach further than any offline channel. As a result, these platforms have become the number one choice for savvy marketeers. They are the perfect tools to engage with stakeholders, increase brand awareness, drive traffic to a website and generate a buzz around your business.
Here are six ways that social media can really benefit your business:
1. Increasing brand recognition
Every opportunity you have to increase your brand’s visibility is invaluable. Social media is simply another way to get your voice heard by a wider audience. It is an effective platform to reach and engage new or prospective customers, whilst continuing a dialogue with and becoming more familiar to your existing customer base and other stakeholders.
2. Improving your converting potential
Every time you engage customers with valuable and relevant content on social media, it is an opportunity to move them through the customer journey. Building an effective social media presence helps you to reach out and create positive interactions, with each interaction building on the last. Even if your click-through rates are low, social media simply increases the number of opportunities your business has to reach out and target new customers.
3. Creating richer experiences
Social media enables you to add value to your stakeholders in a targeted way, allowing you to communicate faster, more often and with greater relevance. Satisfied customers are more likely to share their experiences with others online which will in turn help to promote your brand and bring in new customers. The online space allows you to share dynamic content easily and can also enable interactivity that you simply wouldn’t have through other traditional marketing channels.
4. A cost-effective campaign solution
Social media allows brands to be incredibly targeted in their campaign communications. In-depth targeting options allow you to advertise to only the demographics you want to reach. It’s also very easy to track success rates and adjust campaign targeting accordingly and in real time. You also get immediate qualitative feedback on your campaign as your followers may comment. This insight is incredibly valuable. Effective social media campaigns can give you more bang for your buck, save you time and provide you with the measures needed to prove return on marketing investment.
5. Improving your customer insight
Social listening allows you to observe your customers on social media. In turn, this information can be used to align your content and target users to a far greater degree than offline communications. To help keep track of your customers, cookies can help track online activity by storing information about an individual’s browsing habits, including which pages have been viewed. You can use this information to re-serve specific products or brand messages to users when they visit social media sites. In short, your online presence gathers valuable information about your current and prospective customers’ habits on a daily basis. You can also be clever with how you move customers through your conversion journey, asking them to supply information to you at different touch points so that you are slowly gathering primary insight as customers engage with your brand.
6. Increasing organic ranking on Google
Effective social media helps improve your business’ search engine ranking. Google loves high-quality content, created with a defined keyword strategy in mind. With your website hosting this content, and links to this content across your social platforms, you create valuable links back to your website. For Google, these backlinks are a vote of confidence and it ranks pages with multiple, authentic backlinks highly. (Google doesn’t link ‘bought’ backlinks). Google also loves moving and evolving content, so regular, targeted and compelling content will rank highly on Google and attract more interest and virality (which also ranks highly on Google!)
One size doesn’t fit all!
Signing up to every social media channel you can think of is not the solution to your digital marketing challenges. Businesses often make this mistake and it dilutes your effort. With the world increasingly doing business online, your interactions with customers on social media platforms are a reflection of your customer service style. So, you have to get it right. You also shouldn’t waste your time on platforms where your customers or stakeholders are not spending time. You need to be able to build a strong content base and create a dialogue (not just broadcasting a message) on the channels most valuable to you. You must be committed to adding relevant, value-adding content on a regular basis and engaging in a conversation.
Rebecca is the founder and Managing Director of rbl. An experienced brand and marketing professional, Rebecca has spent over 30 years helping clients to build, design and manage their brands.