Article

Carl Bischoff
Carl Bischoff 17 February 2014

How Social Media Can Benefit Your Small Business

Small businesses with smaller budgets can capitalise on the opportunity to get their message out via Social Media

Social media, once considered a trend, has exploded in the past decade and revolutionised the way companies market their businesses and products, generate leads, and connect with their target audience.  And it is not just for the big guys. Here are some interesting statistics from Hubspot’s 2013 State of Inbound Marketing Research Report:

  • 70% of B2C companies have reported acquiring a customer through their Facebook page.
  • 53% of B2B companies have reported acquiring a customer through LinkedIn.
  • Roughly 34% of small businesses have acquired a customer through Twitter.
  • Small businesses enjoy a higher percentage of leads that convert to sales (27%) through social media than their larger counterparts.

 

Small businesses with smaller budgets can capitalise on the opportunity to get their message out in a broader reaching, more cost effective way than with traditional marketing alone. Some benefits to social media marketing include:

 

Search Engine Optimisation

—Having a presence on different social media platforms helps you get noticed more easily in SERPs. Why? Social content shows up in search results.  You can optimise the content on your social media pages to get the best results. Google + is a great option to help improve your SEO and local search since it is associated with the worlds largest search engine. Cozying up to Google is never a bad idea! Note: In order to get the best SEO results, you have got to keep your page active and post great, optimised content.

 

Social Proof

— Have you ever driven out to a restaurant that you have not tried before and found the parking lot empty? Did you think twice about eating there? What if the place was packed? Even if you did not know much about it, you would probably feel more comfortable eating there knowing that it was the restaurant of choice for so many other people.  This idea can be applied to social media. The more “likes,” +1s, tweets, pins, and shares you get, the more authoritative and relevant you look to potential customers. After all, there is safety in numbers.

 

Humanising Your Small Business

—Social media gives you the opportunity to humanise your brand. Rather than blasting visitors with sales pitches and product offers, use your social media platforms to attract potential customers with links to helpful articles that you have posted on your blog, links to industry-related information, contests, infographics, funny visual or written content related to your niche, videos, and more. Always cater your content to your ideal buyer.

 

But your social media strategy does not have to include all of the social media platforms. Choose the ones that your ideal buyers are trolling frequently. As mentioned in the statistics above, B2C companies can benefit greatly from Facebook, while B2B companies get a better response from LinkedIn. Twitter is helpful if you post frequently and want to generate buzz. Google + is a must-have for SEO. Do you have products to showcase? Consider Pinterest and Instagram to post eye-catching images and drive traffic back to your website. Do you blog frequently and have the ability to include rich images and video? In this case, Tumblr is also worth checking out.

 

Keep in mind that social media is just that…social. To get the best social media bang for your buck, choose the platforms that work best for your business; post frequent, helpful, and relevant content; interact with your audience in a meaningful way by responding to comments on your pages and following others; and optimise your page content and your posts for more effective SEO and local search results. Typically the goal is to drive web traffic back to your website so that potential and current customers can see what you have to offer, so include links to your posts whenever possible to encourage visitors to click through.

 

Social media takes some time and effort, but the return on investment for your small business is well worth it! Do you need help creating your digital and social media strategy? Contact us today to find out how we can help your small business leverage social media to boost your bottom line.

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