What is Social Media?
Google Dictionary defines Social Media as, “websites and applications that enable users to create and share content or to participate in social networking“.
Social Networking sites is where social media is created.
Examples of Social Networking sites include; websites and applications dedicated to forums, micro-blogging, social bookmarking, social curation, and wikis.
Why is Social Media so important?
With those sheer numbers, it makes so much sense to use social media marketing for your business.
It’s even an important ranking factor in search engine optimisation.
It’s also one of the most rapidly changing marketing channels. With new features and updates constantly being released by the likes of Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, and so on, it can be hard to keep up – or even know where to begin!
The Most crucial reason why social media is so important
One of the most crucial reasons why social media is so important is the amount of people using social media sites.
Facebook has a whopping 2.061 billion active users! You can check out our Facebook page here.
Do you have a Facebook account? If not, you better make one!
You have heard of Facebook Messenger, right? Many businesses actually use Facebook Messenger as a kind of live chat facility.
It’s generally used as a point of contact for customer services purposes, for dealing with complaints or order queries and so on.
Parcel2Go, a parcel delivery company, use Facebook Messenger very well. They have turned on “Instant Replies” (as seen above) which makes the customer feel at ease knowing they won’t have to wait a long time to get a reply.
Some companies actually incorporate Facebook Messenger with the use of a bot!
Instagram or “Insta”, as most people know it, has a massive 700 million active users! You can check out our Instagram profile here.
Instagram is a visual social network, designed to allow users to interact via digital media.
Although you’d think it would be more suited to artists, it is actually perfect for business.
Instagram has been key to the businesses success, which has a giant 2.2 million followers!
Twitter has a massive 328 million active users! You can check out our Twitter here.
Twitter is a real time news app. It can be the perfect marketing tool when used correctly.
When she is in London, Queen Elizabeth II is awoken by a bagpiper playing outside her window.
— UberFacts (@UberFacts) November 5, 2017
It posts random “unimportant” facts and earns Sanchez $500,000 per year, through sponsorship, promotion and affiliate income.
Other social networking sites
This of course, will depend on your type of business. For example, if you run a recruitment firm, you will most definitely be using LinkedIn.
As indicated in the chart earlier, there are many different social networking sites available that have millions of active users.
More reasons why Social Media is so important
Driving Targeted Traffic and Increase Sales
Once you have built a fairly decent following on your social media profiles, you will be able to drive a good amount of targeted traffic to your website.
For example, imagine you were selling jewellery products. You could create a post with a free shipping voucher/coupon and the link to the product page.
Get this set (12 pair) of earrings for only $9.99! (50%+ off)
Use coupon code: "EARRING" for free shipping 😇
— Equideals (@equideals) November 2, 2017
This would drive customers directly to the product, they would then look around on your site and potentially add more products to their basket etc.
In addition, if you were to use relevant trending hashtags you could gain new followers or likes and potentially new customers.
Boosts your website’s SEO through Social Signals
Social Signals are where your website is being shared through social media.
For example tweeting a product link, posting a link to your website on Facebook etc. When a large number of users share or post the link to a website, it indicates that this website is popular.
This in turn, indicates excellent domain authority and demonstrates that the URL is of a higher value. These factors will lead to your site’s rank on the SERPs to increase.
Relationship Building and Networking
Social Networks like Twitter are real time. You can see what your customers like or dislike and therefore adapt your social media strategy as a result.
In addition to this, you can also use it to connect with potential leads. As mentioned previously, LinkedIn is like a recruiters Swiss Army Knife.
On LinkedIn, you may connect with many different candidates. Down the line there may be a suitable role for one of them that comes up, which will lead to a placement (sale).
Direct Messaging (DM)
As mentioned previously, many businesses use Facebook Messenger as a means of customer service. Everyone has Facebook (well 2 billion people), making this easily accessible to all.
Furthermore, Twitter and Instagram have excellent Direct Messaging facilities that allow you to send your followers messages. This could turn into leads and traffic, especially if you include a link to your website.
There are many different types of software and applications that will actually automatically DM new followers. One of them is CrowdFire.
You could have a welcome message with a link to your website or email list. This would get you new link clicks, leads, sign ups, sales etc.
Social Networking Ads
Facebook and Twitter ads for example, are very easy to use and can be customised in so many different ways.
You can target so many specifics to really pin point your target market. This would allow you to show ads only to those that would be interested in your product or service.
We actually include some free ads within all of our social media management packages.
Social Networking sites like Twitter are used for real time news. Many journalists use Twitter.
You can actually find journalists, columnists and editors using social media, very easily. And potentially even some contact details.
Let’s say you put into the search bar the name of a Newspaper company. In our example we will use “TheSun” via Twitter.
When searching be sure to click on the “People” tab, in order to only bring up actual accounts, not tweets.
If you scroll down a bit, you will start to see a number of journalists and editors show up. In this example, we are even able to find multiple email addresses!
Imagine you were doing some kind of product launch. You could send an email to one of these people, with all the details of the product and your website. This could potentially get it put in to that newspaper!
This would result in a very powerful backlink, along with lots of free traffic and media coverage.
Dealing with Problems and Complaints
Social Media is the place many customers will go to, in order to vent their frustration out about a company, product or service.
As well as using Facebook Messenger, many of the big companies have separate Twitter accounts for customer service, in order to handle things like complaints and order issues.
This study indicates that customers and consumers appreciate complaints being dealt with via social media.
This may be due to ease of use as well as the real time nature of social media.
Trust and Brand Loyalty
Let’s say you wanted to buy something online from a small business you hadn’t seen before.
If you were to check their social media and it was non existent (e.g. their most recent post was last year!), would you be more inclined to buy from them? Of course not!
This study found that companies with active social media profiles have more loyal customers.
Casting out the net
Using social media you may be able to find potential customers. On all of the popular social networks they have search facility.
Let’s say for example you were a graphic designer.
You could search on Facebook “Graphic Designer” and you will definitely find people looking for the creation of some kind of image.
You could then reply to their post or direct message them, with details of your service and website.
On Instagram you could publish your previous works, sort of like an online gallery of your portfolio. This would allow people to see your work and therefore lead to sales of your services.
It’s free marketing
It’s free to use Social Media.
It doesn’t cost you any money to post or create an account. However, it does cost time.
It is also crucial that you know what your doing, otherwise you’d be wasting your time and could potentially negatively affect your brand.
If you needed a social media management company (like us) to manage your social media, then it would cost you some money, depending on the cost of their services.
Spy on your competitors
Being able to keep tabs on your competition is very useful indeed. You can act or react to any potential strategies they put in place, nearly instantly.
Also, due to the public nature of social media you can see your competitions followers and potentially even their customers. You can then follow and interact with them – steal them even!
So why is Social Media so important then?
Social Media is all about relevance and being up to date.
The only way to keep relevant is to keep up with trends. Whether that’s looking through Google Trends or seeing what is trending on different social media.
And then, making sure your posts align with these trends. It also means that if someone were to search those trends, they could find your post. Which then means new followers, leads you name it.
As social media is very real time, it is crucial that you use social media or you will be left behind.
We hope this post was helpful! Comment below if you find social media to be useful and if so, why?
Do you need any help with your Social Media? If so, check out our Social Media Management services.