Social Media & Small Businesses
Many smaller organisations think that social media is only for larger organisations but we think differently. It can be equally effective for smaller organisations and if anything is much easier to handle and monitor.
There are many benefits to marketing a business via social media platform:
- It is cost effective
- Most platforms are free to advertise on
- One can reach a large target audience by carefully identifying niche markets and delivering your message to a select group
- It is a powerful customer care channel.
Identifying your Social Media Strategy
What do you want to achieve and what do you need to do in order to get there, you will need to research a cost-benefit analysis. Based on your research you will need to:
- Define your company’s objectives in a clear and concise manner
- Allocate a budget
- Nominate staff
- Allocate time
- Duration of the social media plan, is it to be used to support the launch of a new product (once off) or will it be part of your company’s marketing plan on a long term basis
- The most important element is can you measure the ROI figure (return on investment)
Define your goals
You should set your goals when deciding on your initial social media strategy but these goals must be measurable and attainable.
However, it can be hard to decide what goals to set?
- Perhaps one goal could be to increase website traffic by 17% in the next 6 months.
- Another could be to increase facebook likes by 40 within 6 months.
- Or another could be to increase Twitter followers by 50 within the next 6 months.
Customer profiling is a pre-requisite to customer engagement. You already know what your company wants to achieve in relation to social media strategy objectives, so you need to match these expectations with your social media follower’s expectations.
When you write a blog and the take-up rate is high then you should research the results, what were they interested in and analyse the benefits to your company i.e. (ROI)
It is a tricky balance as you need to make sure your social media contributions are witty, informative, and controversial at times and you need to be an educator but at the same time balance your company’s objectives.
Quality over quantity
With social media, you can create a one to one conversation, even between a business and its customers. Quality is the key element here as the quality of a post is far more important than the amount of posts that are published. It only takes one quality post to impress your audience and this in return may drive a substantial amount of traffic to your site or location. The main objective would be to have a continuous stream of quality posts.
Be responsive: customer service
Providing great customer service on social media is one of the most ways to win the loyalty of your customers and community. That means responding to the questions and comments of your followers in a timely manner. It is important to remember that negative feedback and positive feedback should be treated in the same manner. Negative feedback is like “gold dust” as most dissatisfied customers will just walk. To be given the opportunity to evaluate feedback from your target audience is fantastic and how you respond to negative feedback will have a positive impact on your target audience.
This will give you the opportunity to engage in further conversation, come up with a solution, improve customer service, and get new product/service ideas and much more. You should always be responsive no matter what social network you’re using. Check Arema Connect Social Media Customer Support page.
Generally, social media marketing efforts will be geared to getting your followers to visit your website and eventually turning them into sales leads/opportunities.
It is important to keep the design of your website up to date and make sure it is easy to navigate. Content is key so you must update current content and create new content on a regular basis.