Having your company get involved in social media outlets not only allows you to market and network with infinite amounts of people, but it also allows you to project your name out there to the masses. Making your publics aware not only that you exist, but that you’re the man for the job is the obvious goal for any company, so why not use all available resources to help you do so? Sites like Facebook, Twitter, and even LinkedIn are helpful tools that companies can use to help promote and gain customers, and getting set up for these sites only takes a few harmless steps. Social networking is taking the business world by storm, so it’s up to your company to either jump on and take social networking for a spin, or to be left in the dust, and ultimately, the yellow pages.
Here are 10 ways social media can help your company:
1. It gets your name out there!
Social media platforms help companies grow in the fact that they almost force people to see their information, whether they like it or not. Let’s face it, these social media sites are everywhere, and it’s more than likely that one or two of your customers are involved with them. By posting on Facebook or uploading YouTube videos about your products, there is a very good chance that your current customers, along with potential ones, are likely to see these displays. Continuous contact with this material will make your customers (current / potential) likely to start wanting to know more about your company. Social media can get your name out there, and if you use it correctly there is no way it will not be heard.
2. It allows you to provide visuals for your customers.
In addition to putting your name out to the masses, social media outlets also allow companies to put a face (or picture) to the projected name. This means that photos are able to be uploaded providing customers a visual representation of your product and how to use it. YouTube is a great place to do this by sharing videos or clips of people using your product and, obviously, enjoying it as well. If people understand exactly what your product does and then see the positive reaction of the user, it’s probable that they too will hold a positive stance on your product and could even entice them to learn more.
3. It allows you to get feedback from customers.
This is where sites like Facebook come into play. Facebook is a great way to share information about your company in a non-overbearing way. It allows you to list facts, links, and even pictures about your products and services followed by a space for customers, clients, and fans to comment and discuss what you’ve stated. Feedback is a key concern for most potential consumers; they want to know how others feel about the product before they invest time any money into it too. Having a Facebook and acknowledging consumer’s comments and concerns is yet another way that social media outlets help build a great reputation for your company.
4. It allows you to respond to their feedback.
Branching right off the above reason is the art of response. In the event that a consumer makes a negative post on your Facebook page, you can quickly respond to their concern to ease their worry or correct the problem. Because Facebook posts are public, this allows people to see that your company cares enough to respond to customers worries and concerns which, in turn, creates a good sense of character about your company. Social media outlets help companies be responsive to the consumers’ needs, which is something that they ultimately need and want.
5. It allows you to advertise promotions.
To keep concerned customers coming back for more, any company knows it’s a good idea to provide coupons or special deals on the products that consumers want. Social media outlets can indeed help with that too. Using Twitter as an example, a company can tweet a phrase or sentence about a promotion, and even provide a link to a coupon right in their tweet. In today’s society people don’t really take the time to sit down and read lengthy articles or news information; we want it fast and we want it now. Twitter is a great way to accommodate to today’s sense of urgency by allowing only 160 characters per tweet, and basically giving the cold hard facts, which, from a business standpoint, could be a great deal or promotion on their product.
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6. It allows you to set up contests.
People not only like deals and coupons, but they also like anything that’s free. Social media outlets like Facebook and Twitter allow companies to set up contests or sweepstakes which followers/friends can participate in to win or try a select product or service. What better place is there to advertise and promote than on sites that people log into every day? Social media outlets provide free publicity and can help inform people of your free product giveaway.
7. It’s the ultimate form of word of mouth advertising.
Social media outlets almost mirror as a word of mouth form of advertising. On any of the discussed sites, people can ‘like,’ ‘follow,’ or be joined to other people’s networks. Once one person ‘likes’ something on Facebook, this shows up on all of their friends’ newsfeeds. This can immediately spark intrigue in people’s minds; why did so-and-so like this company? What does this company do? What do they specialize in? Even if these two people aren’t having a face-to-face conversation, one can still look at the information another liked, or rewteeted, or followed, and gain information that way. People being nosey is a common fact of life, whether we like it or not, so why not take advantage of it?
8. It's a great recruitment / hiring tool.
Social media sites not only allow you to connect and interact with customer and fans, it also allows you to hire them! The social media site LinkedIn is a business related outlet that can help attract aspiring employees to your company to, literally, make it grow. Users on LinkedIn can upload resumes, previous job information, specialties, and other key facts that employers would like to know about their future employees. By voluntarily uploading resume pertinent information, it’s easy for employers to evaluate potential employees on the spot and use their information as a deciding factor on who is eligible for the job and who is not.
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9. It allows you to connect to people globally.
One major benefit of just about every social media site out there, is the fact that they’re accessible and used by millions of people, everywhere, all across the world. This means that your company has the ability to become known and do business with a variety of different people from anywhere in the world. Yes, company websites can do the same thing, but social media outlets can make the customer’s experience infinitely more personal and, overall, more real. They are a great way to connect to people from all walks of life, and a great way to gain customers that you may have never expected before.
10. It allows you to have the upper hand with your competition.
Finally, social media outlets are a great way to keep your eye on your competition. By following them on all social media outlets, you, like the consumer, know exactly what they’re doing at all times. This can help you maintain the upper hand over them, by offering better deals, or giving better, more useful information - not to mention, learning what other people are saying about them. It’s a dog-eat-dog world out there and every company is ready to snatch up customers wherever they can, so if social media outlets can help recruit customers from other companies, so be it.
These are just a few of the many ways social media can help you grow your business. What unique and / or notable uses have you found?