Social Media: Why do I need to use it to promote my business?
Plenty of businesses come to us genuinely confused about why their website isn’t generating enough web traffic. Another common question we get asked is ‘just how important is it for our business to be on social media?’ We want to take a minute to explain how the two questions are intrinsically linked and if you answer one then you’ve answered the other already.
So, here’s the thing, Social media is a complete misnomer. As far as we’re concerned, the social aspect of social media is just one limited element of its use. A social account is good to have for connecting with friends and loved ones, especially during the pandemic when seeing these people is restricted, but these platforms aren’t just for socialisation. They have so much more to give than just collecting likes on photos of your pets or your avocado bagel. In fact, if you’re struggling to gain interest in your products or services or simply wish to increase your marketing reach then you cannot afford to ignore this avenue of potential custom and revenue at your fingertips.
Here are our top five reasons for using social media to market your business.
According to We Are Social, “more than 3 billion people around the world now use social media each month.” Numbers don’t lie and that is a vast amount of people you simply cannot ignore. If you want more people to know about your company, thus increasing demand for your services and eventually profit, then here are an immense number of people you can tell about your business at little cost to you.
Hootsuite claims that “social media for business is no longer optional. It’s an essential way to reach your customers, gain valuable insights, and grow your brand.” That is what you want to achieve, isn’t it? You want to reach more people and grow your business. Well, social media gives you the unique ability to connect with hundreds of thousands of people at once, a percentage of which will be positioned to require your services. Without online marketing, you must rely on outdated and less effective mediums of advertising such as posters and flyers which don’t have the same reach.
The problem with physical forms of promotion, such as flyers, is that they only reach a very limited number of people. One flyer might be glanced at by one person as they extract it from the post on their doormat that they actually do want. Maybe it catches their eye and they read it before depositing it in the recycling bin. Or maybe they don’t. The best you could hope for from that one flyer is that that person might mention it to someone else in passing and generate some interest, but then that journey is ended. One flyer might attract one person.
Of course, you don’t just get one flyer printed, do you? You order a few hundred, hoping that it will appeal to hundreds of people. You pay for the flyers to be printed, maybe you pay someone to design them too. You then need to pay someone to distribute them. If you only offer a local service, this might serve your needs, but if your work takes you further afield or you sell products which can be posted, then can those flyers go far enough to attract your customers? If someone in Inverness could use the services you offer but your flyers are being distributed in Slough, they are never going to know you exist and you miss out on custom.
Alternatively, if you share a single post on social media and promote it appropriately, it can go around the world and back, being seen by an unlimited number of people. Did we mention that social media is free to use? No printing costs, no design costs or distribution costs (unless you want to pay for ads, that is) and it can go so much further because it has no physical distance to cross to get to your potential customers. The marketing may be virtual and exist only online, but the results are very real.
Without putting too fine a point on it, if your competition is on social media, effectively promoting their business and you aren’t, you are willingly sacrificing potential sales to your competitors. No one wants that. If you want to remain or to become a serious rival to your competitors, then social media is a must.
You may think that having a great website should be enough to generate a lot of interest in your business, but a flashy website won’t help you much if people can’t see it. Hootsuite advises that active social media accounts will increase the number of visitors you get to your website. They write that “social media posts and ads are key ways to drive traffic to your website.” The reason for this is chiefly that people spend an inordinate amount of time scrolling through social media whereas they may not spend much time mindlessly searching for ‘oven-cleaners in Gloucester’ on Google. Maybe you do, but others generally don’t. So social media puts your content in front of people without them necessarily having to first search for it. Rule number one of marketing is and has always been: people are lazy. Make it easy for them.
Different social media platforms tend to attract different age ranges, so if your service or product appeals to a specific age demographic then a targeted campaign on a specific social network might be just what you need. For marketing purposes, we advise that the general rules are that Facebook appeals to the older generations while Twitter remains popular with the millennials and Instagram appeals more to a younger crowd.
We mention this because if you choose to promote your teeny, weeny, yellow, polka-dot bikini company solely on Facebook then it may not result in as many sales as if you were also on Instagram. We realise that this is largely a generalisation. There may be many women (or men) in their sixties who would proudly wear such revealing apparel. We don’t judge, but as a rule of thumb, it will serve you well to be mindful of which age ranges your posts are aimed at.
Engagement is what you want from your social media accounts. If people are liking your posts, making comments and sharing your content then you are in a prime position to share your website or links to your e-commerce store to drum up some business. You can make a success of social media for your business all on your own but encouraging the level of engagement you want can be time consuming. Because of this many businesses, both large and small, choose to outsource their social media handling to a marketing company like us.
One of Deearo Marketing’s most popular services is social media management. This is because nurturing social media growth and engagement can eat into time that business owners or employees could otherwise be using more efficiently, but also because there is a subtle science to succeeding at social media sharing for business. Having said this, there are simple things you can do yourself to increase your social media engagement. Tune in for our next blog post to learn how you can take control of your own social media growth.
Meanwhile, if you have any questions or queries about how social media can be used to grow your business, then get in touch with us. Our marketing experts are metaphorically champing at the bit to help word of your company go further than ever before.