Running a small business comes with its fair share of challenges in a competitive and constantly evolving business environment. Your competitors are likely to have a strong social media presence to promote their services and connect with their customers. Therefore, it’s crucial you also take advantage of the power of social media to take your business to the next level. Here’s why a social media presence is vital for the success of your small business…
- To promote your company’s services
Social media is one of the best free promotional tools you can take advantage of to promote your small business. It’s so ingrained in everyone’s everyday lives that your company’s presence on popular social networks will be expected by your customers. Social media is pivotal to signal to your clients that you’re a genuine trustworthy business.
Whether you’re sharing your company’s latest services and blog posts on Facebook, tweeting about the latest industry news or sharing Instagram pictures of your business, these actions all promote brand awareness and customer loyalty. Current and potential clients will follow your social media to stay up to date with your products or services. Therefore, keeping your social media updated with your latest offerings can encourage your customers to keep your business in mind if they’re in need of your services.
If you’re a local business, customers may use social media to search for your services in their area so it’s especially important you’re active on all the main social platforms. You can also use social platforms to attract prospective customers by sharing special offers you’re running, showcasing photos and videos of your products or services and highlighting positive customer comments. Social media can ultimately help you to develop your brand by adding a personal element to your services and crafting the business image you want to portray.
- To provide customer service
Customers will often search for your company’s social media channels if they have a question, comment or complaint about your services. Facebook and Twitter in particular are often a client’s go to social platforms to find an answer to their query.
An active social media presence, where you respond quickly and professionally to these inquiries is essential for business success. Not only will this signal to your customers you’re a trustworthy business and you care about your clients’ experience, it could even secure you a sale. If a customer or client has an immediate question about one of your products or services, try to respond rapidly to their query. This is likely to encourage them to employ your services rather than looking elsewhere.
Whilst no small business enjoys dealing with complaints, it’s an issue encountered by most companies. A speedy, apologetic reply which adequately deals with the issue at hand helps to maintain customer relationships and incentivizes the client to use your services in the future. Further, how you deal with inquiries will also foster trust with current and potential customers. They will be assured that if they encounter a problem with your products or services, you will endeavour to resolve it.
It’s not all about complaints either! Satisfied customers will also often take to social media to offer positive testimonials of your services and recommend your business to others. Recommendations from other customers can generate sales by giving potential clients the motivation to try out your services. Make sure you encourage clients to rate and review your services on social media to take advantage of its free promotional opportunities.
- To effectively target potential customers
Gaining a following on social media for your small business can boost your brand by showcasing its popularity to potential clients. The amount of ‘likes’ and followers associated with your business does have a big influence in our social media driven world. Therefore, growing your social media presence can also lead to progress in your company’s sales figures. The more people who like and share content from your company’s social media pages, the further your business will be promoted in their personal social networks. As a result, creating engaging and shareable content will allow your business to be exposed to a whole new range of potential customers.
Whilst social media does offer a free source of business promotion, it can additionally be cost effective to employ its paid services to boost your small business. Targeted ads on social networks like Facebook can allow you to specifically aim your ads towards those in your target demographic. This is particularly powerful marketing if you’re a small business offering local services, as Facebook allows you to specifically target paid ads towards those living in specific areas.
However, paid ads can also be an effective tool, regardless of your industry. Facebook advertisements allow you to select everything from the age group, gender and personal interests of the customers you want to see your ads. It certainly offers a level of accuracy that’s difficult to achieve with traditional forms of advertising.
Utilising social media effectively can have a dramatic impact in raising awareness of your brand and converting potential customers into sales.
Depending on your type of business, certain social media platforms can provide the best opportunity for you to promote your business.
Read our guide to the social media sites you should focus on for even more ways you can generate real results for your business.