Updated: Jan 15
It’s common for small businesses to misunderstand the importance of social media when it comes to growing their business. Many don’t use it at all and some find it challenging to apply.
In this guide, we are going to look at the reasons why small businesses need social media and how it can help them grow in the near future.
One of the most important aspects of social media is the power it gives you to take your business digital. Platforms such as Facebook now give you the option to add products and services to your page so that you can sell directly through the platform. Facebook also lets you make appointments and bookings via a calendar system so there is something for everyone to benefit from as a small business.
This feature has become more important in recent months with the current pandemic that has shaken the business world. Having a system in place that allows you to do business with customers online is a must and you will only benefit from more business further down the line. Even when taking a look into the future, it is clear to see that consumer behaviours are changing and more people will continue to shop online once the pandemic has passed.
Social media also makes it easy to connect your website with the platforms that are available to you. For this reason, social media should not be considered as “just another marketing channel”. Instead, you should be looking at it as part of your customer’s journey and user experience. The available platforms have become advanced to a point where it is easy to automate your customer’s experience and deliver them to a high standard.
Connect with customers locally, nationally and globally
As mentioned in the previous section, social media is a great route to taking your business digital. The main benefit of going digital is also going global. Once your business is online and running digitally, you can begin serving your customers on a local, national and global scale. This also means that your customers can find you from anywhere in the world and interact with you at any time.
There is a concept known as the ‘shrinking world effect’ which explains how technology has impacted the world we live in. The idea is that technology such as social media is making it much easier to communicate with people and businesses across the world. Social media has now made it possible to interact, engage and purchase from our favourite global brands by simply using our smartphone.
If you are looking to take your business national or global, then social media is a good place to start. It will provide you with the infrastructure and data needed to access these markets and it will help you to boost your exposure.
Hyper targeting Facebook now has over 2 billion active users on its platform. This means they have access to an incredible source of data, helping them to understand each individual’s interests and behaviours. Through Facebook paid advertising, we can use this data to hyper-target our ideal target audience. For example, if you are a business that sells cat toys you could target people who have an interest in cats and are part of the most popular cat group on Facebook. Doing this will allow you to put your message in front of the audience that is most likely to be your customer.
This is good for your business because you won’t be wasting money displaying a message to people who have no interest in your product/service.
Customer Service Social media platforms such as Twitter are fantastic for providing answers to your customers and solving their problems. Twitter is best used as a way to solve your customer’s problems rather than looking to monetise the channel. You might notice that a lot of the big brands and organisations will have a dedicated Twitter page for customer service issues. This is because the platform is set up in a way that makes it very easy for a user to address their issue publicly by tagging the company in their posts. As a business, you need to carry out ‘social listening’ to make sure you know what your customers are talking about. If they have tweeted about an issue, then addressing this publicly could benefit you as well as the customer. For example, the customer will receive an answer to their problem helping to build the relationship with that individual and other potential customers will be able to see how friendly and effectively you deal with customer issues, helping to build your reputation.
In this article, we have looked at the power of social media and how it can impact your business. The platforms available to you will allow you to take your business digital and access global markets, as well as, offering the potential to deliver a better customer experience and service.
It’s clear to see the benefits that social media could have on your business but the way in which you apply it to your business is what really matters.
If you are looking for support around taking your business digital or developing your social media approach, please contact one of our team.