Why Your Business Should Embrace Social Media Marketing
Harnessing the power of social media for your business can provide you with many competitive advantages but be mindful of the potential drawbacks
social • MARKETING
Social media tools can amplify your marketing messages, help you build meaningful relationships with your existing clients and business partners, and connect and engage with prospective clients. Furthermore, one of the more compelling reasons to use and monitor social networks is for competitive intelligence.
Like any other skill, social media marketing requires training. Using tools like Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn effectively requires strategy, foresight, and a significant investment in time to manage. For businesses in Ontario that are keen to become social businesses, the Ontario and federal governments jointly provide employers the opportunity to invest in training their workforce through the Canada-Ontario Job Grant (COJG). In other words, the COJG provides up to $10,000 per person for social media training costs provided by an eligible third-party trainer like Treefrog.
The Good, the Bad, and the Social
While there are certainly upsides to using social media to communicate dynamically and in real-time with clients, partners, and the wider world, there are downsides, too. Acknowledging both the pros and cons of social networking can help you use these communications tools effectively.
Among the findings in Social Media Examiner’s annual global survey of social media use by small businesses entitled, “Social Media Marketing Industry Report”, 90% of respondents named “increased exposure” as the top benefit of using social tools. “Increased web traffic” ranked second (77%), followed by “developed loyal fans” (69%), “provided marketplace insight” (68%), and “generated leads” (65%).
The benefits for businesses to use social tools include:
Increased brand awareness and loyalty
More opportunities to attract and convert new clients
Improved SEO rankings and website traffic
It provides insights into your clients
Better customer service
The challenges associated with using social media include:
Security and privacy
Determining ROI (return on investment)
Dealing with complaints or negative reviews
Committing to social media marketing consistently
You need to define a social media strategy that suits your business, and recognize it is a living document that will need to change over time. If your social profiles have been left to stagnate, it makes your company seem disengaged or out of touch. Keep in mind, social media is also one of the first places that potential clients go to find out more about your business. If your social profiles appear deserted, that’s the impression you’re leaving with new sales leads. Plus, if you have people trying to connect with you via social media and their messages go unanswered, you are missing out on opportunities to grow your audience.
Establish Your Social Brand
Your business needs an effective, comprehensive, profitable social marketing strategy that integrates with the rest of your marketing activities. It’s not just about what social platforms to use, but how to use them, and when. You need to know how to design, manage and monitor and optimize your campaigns to promote growth, and strengthen your brand in the global marketplace.
Take advantage of the COJG and get the training you and your team need to become a social business with Treefrog’s series of proficiency programs and courses.