When you finish this article, you’ll understand why, in today’s computer and mobile phone world, social media can plan a large part in the success of a small business. Think of how often you hear about Twitter, Facebook and other social media platforms. Did you know that many users on the internet use these platforms, to provide them with more pertinent information than Google currently provides.
Imagine you’ve just arrived in a small town and plan to stay for a short period of time. You want to know where go to eat, stay, and sightsee. If you go to Facebook and type in the name “Brighton,” and click over to their page on Facebook, you find a wealth of information on restaurants, hotels, and places to see while visiting. So I click on Brighton Marina, and find a wealth of information is there, all in one place, without even going to Google. Imagine the possibilities this has for any local business that has chosen to use social media to their advantage!
Much of what people learn today is derived from social media sites such as Pinterest, Twitter, and Facebook. People on these social sites are sharing business pages with their friends. This has the power to put any small business in front of an amazing number of people; also known as potential customers. Today, people are more likely to tell all their friends about a great experience they had, by putting it on social media. Not only that, they’ll include pictures which is another great way to get a lot of free advertising.
With the economic climate we live in today, the power of a good review for a local business, or their product cannot be underestimated. Customers are now taking the time to spread the word to others about a business that exceeds expectations, in part to help them stay in business, and also to spread their positive information to their friends.
People on Facebook will often “Like” a business page that they’re happy with, and more so if that business keeps their social media page updated with specials, interesting news, and upcoming sales. The business that interacts with their customers in these environments, will gain a loyal following. Think of the power of announcing on your Facebook or Twitter account, that you’re having a one day special and all of your followers get to see this “free” advertising.
On the flip side of this scenario, when a customer goes to your Facebook or Twitter page, and registers a complaint, all your followers will see this as well. This presents you with an opportunity to show everyone how good your customer service is at resolving a customer’s issue. If you address the issue directly, and work with that customer to resolve the issue, the whole community, that is following you, will be impressed that you cared enough to help turn an unhappy customer into a happy one.
It’s important that website owners remember that social media actually needs to be “managed.” If you don’t have the time to manage all your social media accounts, you’ll do more harm than good, and end up losing loyal followers. This is the time when you need to consider hiring a social media manager, who can increase your online exposure, reply to customer’s comments, and keep the site updated constantly. It may cost a bit more to do this, but the end result will be more sales for your company, and more customers for your product. Social media is a powerful tool, if you use it correctly. If doing it yourself, ensure you know what you’re doing and you’ll be amazed at the return on your investment.