Social media will not save your business. In a previous blog I wrote that social media is a necessity for small businesses and it is a strategy that helps to grow your business. It should not distract you from your passion, product or service. When you think of it from this perspective then it should not consume all your time, money, effort or suck the life out of you. If you keep this in mind then you will realise the value social media can add to your business.
As a small business owner (SBO) how can you tell if social media is right for your business?
- Your customers are there. If your target demographic spends considerable time on a particular social media site, you need to have a presence there.
- You want to interact with your customers. Responding to comments, tweets and mentions is the best way to find out what your customers are thinking and want.
- You want to share your expertise. If you are not afraid to share your experience and knowledge in your area of specialisation then blogging is a powerful way to promote your business. Doing so builds you as a social authority who customers can turn to for content and information.
- You care about your brand. If you are building your unique brand and a lifestyle to wrap around your product or service, social media lets you place your content in front of the right people at the right time.
- You need market research. In my post “Why Every Small Business Needs Social Media” I wrote that most of the large social media sites have free analytics tools. This provides you not only with data but allows you to participate in “social media listening.” Which means you can see what is trending, hot and what people think about your brand in near real-time.
As a business owner or entrepreneur there should be, like any other marketing campaign, a viable business case for social media marketing. At the end of the day or financial year, if your time, effort and cost spent on social media does add to the bottom line, then you will need to rethink your strategy. Even if it means shutting down the channel or campaign and focusing efforts elsewhere.
Today, social media is a necessity as it is ubiquitous in the personal routines of your customer. When you appreciate what social media is, an influential communication channel, you will then be able make honest business decisions about your social media endeavours and derive the best results from your social media strategy.
by TuiSiong Hie
Digital Media Strategist & Founder at Cross+word
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