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Social media has evolved from a space for personal interaction into a vibrant marketing channel for businesses of all sizes. Today, social media is a must-have for any small business – regardless of what industry you’re in. Whether you already have a strong social media presence or are looking to step up your game, learn more about the benefits of social media marketing for your business.
- Build brand awareness.
- Provide stand-out customer service.
- Acquire leads in a low-cost way.
- Learn more about your customers.
- Increase website traffic and search ranking.
1. Build brand awareness.
Strong brand awareness is key in building credibility for your small business – and social media is a great way to generate that awareness. Social media allows you to share your business brand across various platforms while creating a consistent look and feel. This consistency is the foundation for building a reputable brand and business. By using the same logo, font and brand colours, you can create an authentic online presence… and authenticity is a must-have when it comes to building trust with your customers.
Your brand voice is another thing to keep consistent across your social media channels. Even if the caption for a Facebook post might be different from a TikTok video, the tone and voice should still reflect your brand.
Try partnering with influencers to boost awareness for your brand through social media. Choose influencers who have a following demographic similar to your target customer and then collaborate with them to drive their audience to your brand’s Instagram, Facebook or TikTok profile.
2. Provide stand-out customer service.
In a world in which customers expect quick, catered customer service, social media is a wonderful avenue for delivering on those demands. Your social media profiles let you communicate, either proactively or reactively, to your followers in real-time. When followers comment or pose questions and a brand responds in a timely and knowledgeable way, it conveys the business’s dedication to customer satisfaction and experience. This kind of engagement goes a long way to fostering loyalty and making a positive impression on your followers.
There are a couple of ways to approach customer service through your social media platforms. If an unhappy customer is tweeting at you, it might be best to apologise and ask them to DM you. If one of your Instagram followers comments that they’re waiting for an item to come back in stock, maybe reply directly to their comment so it can be helpful to others.
You don’t need to be available 24/7 though. Let customers know when they can expect a response by including your service hours and availability in your bio. It could be something as simple as, “We respond to DMs M-F from 10-6am.”
In addition to responding to inquiries or complaints, you can also use social media as a place to engage with your customers. It could be as easy as “liking” their comment or sending a short response to a direct message.
3. Acquire leads in a low-cost way.
As a small business owner, you’re probably always on the lookout for low-cost marketing options – fortunately, social media is a perfect avenue. Most social media platforms are free and plenty of brands have grown exponentially through organic social media marketing. And if you do have a marketing budget, it’s also relatively low-cost to boost your posts or run ads on social media platforms like Facebook and Instagram.
Another low-cost way to build your social media following is by incentivising people to follow you. Maybe offer 10% off a customer’s order total when they follow you on TiKTok, or give them a small gift with their purchase when they “check in” to your business on Facebook. These gestures are a great way to build positive relationships with your existing customers and generate more exposure for your brand.
4. Learn more about your customers.
By investing some time into understanding your target audience and tailoring your posts, aesthetic and even platform presence, a business can quickly grow its following and create a captive audience. Many social media platforms have built-in tools that make it easy for you to get to know your audience. Whether it’s age, location, gender or interests, you have loads of data at your disposal to help you learn more about your customers. This information can help you tailor your social media marketing strategy to your specific audience, ultimately creating a more engaged following.
Looking to get quick feedback on a new product or offering? Want to learn a little bit more about general customer preferences? Run a poll in your Instagram Stories to collect even more data about who follows you.
5. Increase website traffic and search ranking.
Another benefit of social media for business is its direct impact on website traffic and search ranking. Make sure to include your website URL in the bio of all of your social media profiles so prospective customers can find your site quickly. In addition to including your URL in your bio, you should also include a link to your website whenever you share a post on your social media channels. The more URL clicks, the more website visits a business gets.
Interestingly, social media also affects your search ranking. When your social media post links to your website or blog content, those links help search engines discern that your website is reputable and should rank for specific keywords. Google’s algorithm is continually evolving to weed out spam websites and appropriately rank websites that are legitimate. By incorporating social media into your marketing strategy, you can positively influence your search ranking without being a search engine optimisation guru.