Social Media: Benefits for Businesses: Part 1

December 5th, 2017   |  

We don’t need to explain to you how popular social media is, and how everyone has a profile or account. But, here are just a few numbers to put it into perspective:

  • From 2008 to 2017, the percentage of the U.S. population that has social media profiles has jumped from 24% to 81%.
  • Worldwide, there are nearly 2 billion social media users, making 1/3 of the population constantly connected.
  • 90% of people ages 18-29 have at least one social media account.

With those sorts of numbers, it’s hard to deny the business potential of social media beyond the selfies, cat videos, or pictures of dinners. In this two part mini-series about social media, we’ll go through some of the benefits of using social media to accomplish your business goals, as well as some strategic guidelines for social media use. So, why else should your business even consider using social media?

Direct Connection to Audience

  • Customer Engagement & Feedback: With unique services or products that have a bit of a learning curve, social media can be a great platform to answer questions about your products and services, while building meaningful relationships with your customers. Netflix is a great example of using social media to interact with viewers. They summarize plots, make viewer recommendations, answer questions about upcoming shows, and even do a few favors for their followers. This user on Facebook loved a graphic Netflix posted about the show Stranger Things so much that they wanted a poster of it. Netflix did them one better:

  • Customer Service: 5% of people chose social media as their top choice for customer service, beating out live chats, phone calls, and emails. Social media is a direct way of contacting a company, and people looking for a quick answer use comments to ask those questions. For example, this Culver’s patron expressed frustration with an order not being correct on a holiday-themed post:

  • Audience Analysis: What better place to get specific demographic information about the people using your products or services than from the audience themselves? Social media gives you amazing insights into what specific people are supporting your business. This information is valuable not only for social media advertising, but also for making strategic audience-focused business decisions.

Image usage permission granted by Sean Nicholson from SocMedSean.com

Achieve Business Goals

  • Conversions & Retargeting: After gathering information about your audience, you can target ads directly to them, even retarget people who interacted with your ad but didn’t ultimately make the purchase or fill out the form on your site.
  • Crisis Management: Ever needed to get the message out to all of your stakeholders all at once? Ever had a product recall, and needed a way to get the information out to several customers at once? Social media was made for mass communication, if you know how to leverage it correctly. For example, when the Ebola virus was a valid concern a few years ago, the BBC used WhatsApp as their primary method of communication with residents about the spread and treatment of Ebola.

Image usage permission granted by Sean Nicholson from SocMedSean.com

There’s a reason so many people are using social media – what’s your reason? What’s your strategic rationale for what platforms your company is on, what content you’re posting, and what business goals will social media help achieve? Next month’s article will help you make some of those strategic decisions.

Interested in creating or refining your company’s social media strategy? Our social media team is here to help! Check us out on Facebook, Twitter (@MediaG), or give us an old-fashioned phone call at 248.687.7888.

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