There's an ever-growing amount of tools, platforms, websites, and applications available for small businesses looking to establish a digital presence. Part of the challenge in getting started with social media is where and how to begin. And, if you’ve been waiting to include social media as part of a growth and visibility strategy, there’s a very good chance your competition is ALREADY reaping the benefits of these powerful tools.
Look up the definition of so·cial me·di·a on Google and you’ll find:
websites and applications that enable users to create
and share content or participate in social networking
This is SUPER important for businesses because social media allows you to establish and nurture connections with existing and new customers, employees, the community where you live and work, and beyond. In fact, according to Marketing TechBlog, in 2014, 46% of web users relied on social media when making a purchase.
What this means is you want to be part of the 8 out of 10 small business using social media to drive growth especially when 3 in 5 share they’ve gained new customers by leveraging Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Google, just to name a few.
What can your business do with “social tools”?
- Collaborate by taking advantage of business intranet and internet platforms, or Google Drive and wiki tools
- Talk with your employees and customers, seek feedback and ask questions
- Share resources, documents, photos, best practices, and work-around solutions
- Publish blog posts, newsletters, articles, videos and business updates
“Companies need to turn their employees into advocates. Their work, their jobs, their activities, etc. have to be restructured in such a way that they are excited about the company and say good things at the dinner table and to their friends on social media.”
---Mitchell Levy, CEO, Happy About
2 Things You Can Do Right Now!
Listen AND Contribute
“Social” works both ways; it allows you to engage in two-way communication with your front line, customers, and community. Listening and contributing is helps you understand what’s working well and what may need some adjusting. In addition, opening your virtual doors to social media means your employees become your brand advocates passing along favorable word-of-mouth (WOM) messages to other people. Who wouldn’t want some free publicity?
Finally, remember the real GOLD of social media is what happens when you’re not online. Social media is a tool whose primary purpose is to ESTABLISH CONNECTIONS that evolve into long-lasting and mutually beneficial relationship offline.