This week I have learnt that part of consulting about Social Media is convincing people that it is worth their time. There are many non-believers who simply don’t understand the value of devoting time to the likes of Facebook, Twitter and YouTube. However, this is usually down to certain misconceptions.
The fact is, Social Media is proven to be good for small businesses. In many industries it is a great way to allow a company to stick their head up in a competitive marketplace and be seen by those around them.
The Social Media Examiner states that:
- 88% of marketers have found social media has helped get them increased exposure
- 89.2% of small businesses saw increased traffic as the result of social media
(Read more of their article about why Social Media benefits small businesses most of all.)
The first misconception that non-believers have is that Social Media is for sales. Social Media is not for sales. It is a type of PR-type channel to communicate your brand to your industry and the consumer. The minute you start trying to directly sell with Social Media is the minute that it becomes a waste of time for you.
This misconception leads to the other problem non-believers have regarding SM – that the results are not immediate or easily measurable. In order to succeed with Social Media, you need the power of endurance, the ability to keep at it slowly but steadily. I like to think of it like an exercise regime – regular small amounts are effective, one massive effort once a month is not. All I am really asking for is 15-30 minutes per day.
Once you do keep things slow and steady for a period of time (it may be 6 months, 12 months, 2 years…), then one day it will make a noticeable difference to your business. But you need to be also putting out the right things to be successful.
So how do you become successful with SM? The plain and simple answer is that you need to:
Become a valued resource to your online community (usually your industry and consumers) whilst getting across your brand and its unique selling points.
And with this you need to (to use an overused word) engage with your audience.
You will then find that you begin to:
- Form new business partnerships.
- Nurture existing relationships with other companies, increasing loyalty.
- Reach consumers that are outside your normal circles.
- Increase awareness of your name and image.
- Aid your website’s SEO (it would take a whole new post to explain how this works, so just trust me on it!).
In time, people will then recognise you and associate you with the products or services you offer… AND finally – leading to more sales! Wayhey!
The trick to getting ahead is getting started – if you need help with your social media, get in touch!