Business Strategy Why Should Your Business Embrace Social Media?
For some, Social Media is a way to manage their life, for others it’s a very confusing place filled with # signs and @ symbols. Whether you are an online junkie or a newbie trying to figure out what it all means, social media is here to stay.
Even though 93% of companies use this platform to promote their business, the machining industry seems to have been left behind. It’s the best time to start thinking about hashtags, trending, tweets and status updates… I promise it’s easier than it sounds!
Social media has firmly cemented its position in modern times. The days of yellow pages and newspaper adverts are long gone. From my personal perspective this is now how we plan, invite and monitor who is coming to our parties, events and social engagements. For example, instead of inviting people over to see our vacation photos we now post them to Facebook for 500 of our friends to view, we announce milestones, moods, children, relationships, song choice, outings and much, much more.
From a business perspective this is how 83% of consumers became educated on their product and service purchases, and where 49% of B2B (business to business) product knowledge is coming from.
So why should you jump on board? These are my top 5 reasons why it’s so important for businesses to engage in Social Media:
1. Networking Ease: With social media, networking has become so readily available. Your peers, customers, industry professionals and industry magazines are literally a click away. This is more cost and time effective than activities such as sales reps cold calling companies that have never heard of them. The more active you are on social media, the more traffic you are driving to your site. In the long run this generates more leads.
2. Builds Relationships: When you keep people up to date on things like milestones your business hit, new capabilities, or, leaking a “trade secret” here and there people start feeling like they have a relationship with your company. This is a great thing! People do business with people they feel comfortable with. Like our parents (or grandparents) did with their butcher, mechanic or grocer this is the new way to build relationships
3. It’s Free: Seriously though, social media is budget friendly! There is a small catch; you do need to commit a portion of your time each day… or pay someone to do that. Building a large group of followers is one thing; it’s another to keep them engaged. Consistency is key in social media.
4. Stand Out: Remember to keep your brand fresh and polished, you are showcasing your business after all. Be creative with your posts and try to do something new. Your followers are your core audience; people who identify with what you are doing. They want to know what you are up to so be committed to keeping them engaged and informed.
5. Shorter Sales Cycle: Aha! I really hit the nail on the head with this one! When someone has read your blog, has seen your status updates and tweets, and viewed your educational videos they feel like they know you… you have an existing relationship. When customers feel like they know you, and they are ready to send you an order, they need less convincing and less hand holding because you are already someone they trust and want to do business with.
So what is stopping your company from embracing social media?