No matter what business you run, you want your customers and potential customers to think about your brand or business, in a positive way, as often as possible. The more this happens, the more likely they are to return or come to you for business and the more likely they are to suggest you to others.
One way to do this is to engage in traditional advertisements. Brands can find their way into the idle consciousness of people during commercial breaks, or as they’re driving around by using billboards or radio ads. However, there are limitations to this. The biggest being the inability for people to respond. It’s difficult to measure how many people view your advertisements or how many take the next step to becoming a customer. If a person believes the ad is relevant to himself or his friends, it takes a few extra steps for him to save or share this information.
Remember, just because somebody wants to do something (such as sharing with friends information about a special deal your business is offering), doesn’t mean they’re going to do it. By making it easier for people to do what you want them to do, you make it more likely that they will do it. That’s what a lot of social media marketing is about.
It should be no surprise to you that social networking site usage is increasing as a percentage of overall time spent on the Internet. What this means is that people are spending more and more of their idle time time engaging with friends, content, and brands, as opposed to simply surfing the Internet. People are still finding the same content as before, but the way they find it now is often through friends.
It addition, almost every social networking site’s business model is based on brands and marketers wanting to leverage the functionality of their site and user base. The creators of social networking sites have in mind what the businesses want, and are going to become profitable by creating tools that will benefit marketers the most.
As a result, social media marketing is going to become increasingly relevant.
If you don’t engage in social media marketing, you’re also doing the following:
- Ignoring the opportunity to engage with customers during their idle time.
- Making it difficult for your customers to share interesting or entertaining content about your brand/business.
- Missing out on the opportunity to take advantage of the most recent and technologically advanced marketing tools, which you can start using free of charge.
When starting to implement your social media marketing strategy, remember that it’s not a stand-alone solution. You should be using social media marketing to increase the value of your product or service and increase the effectiveness of your marketing/PR/advertisements. And vice versa.