Social media offers a huge opportunity for increased exposure, loyalty and sales… that being said, many small business owners still dismiss it as a “passing fancy” that is too complicated to be worth the effort. The statistics, however, illustrate how untrue this is. According to Hubspot, 92% of marketers in 2014 claimed that social media marketing was important for their business, with 80% indicating their efforts increased traffic to their websites. And according to Social Media Examiner, 97% of marketers are currently participating in social media—but 85% of participants aren’t sure what social media tools are the best to use.
According to Jayson DeMers with Forbes.com, below are a number of ways social media marketing can improve your business:
Increased Brand Recognition
Every opportunity you have to share your content and increase your visibility is valuable. Your social media networks are just new channels for your brand’s voice and content. This is important because it simultaneously makes you easier and more accessible to new customers as well as making your brand more familiar and recognizable to existing customers. For example, a frequent Twitter user could hear about your company for the first time only after stumbling upon it in a newsfeed. Or, an otherwise apathetic customer might become better acquainted with your brand after seeing your presence on multiple networks.
Improved Brand Loyalty
According to a report published by Texas Tech University, marketing brands who engage on social media channels enjoy higher loyalty from their existing customers. The report concludes that… “Companies should take advantage of the tools social media gives them when it comes to connecting with their audience. A strategic and open social media plan could prove influential in morphing consumers into being brand loyal.” Additional proof was found in another study published by Convince and Convert. This study found that 53% of Americans who follow brands in social media are more loyal to those brands.
More Opportunities to Convert
Every post you make on a social media platform is an opportunity for potential customers to convert to existing ones. When you build a following, you will simultaneously have access to new customers, recent customers and old customers… and, you will be able to interact with all of them. Every blog post, image, video or comment that you share is a chance for someone to react, and every reaction could lead to a site visit and/or a conversion. Not every interaction with your brand results in a conversion but every positive interaction increases the likelihood of an eventual conversion. Even if your click-through rates are low, the sheer number of opportunities you have on social media is significant.
Higher Conversion Rates
Social media marketing can result in higher conversion rates by humanizing your brand. Social media is a place where brands can act like people do; following other people and companies, interacting through comments and “likes,” and sharing valuable information. This is important because people like doing business with other people as opposed to companies.
Additionally, studies have shown that social media has a 100% higher lead-to-close rate than outbound marketing, and a higher number of social media followers tends to improve trust and credibility in your brand, representing social proof. As such, simply building your audience in social media can improve conversion rates on your existing traffic.