Why Social Media Isn’t A Choice

by QuickCert on September 9, 2011

social-media-demand

Businesses today can’t avoid social media. In many ways, it’s the equivalent of refusing to start a company website a decade ago. Yes, you may be doing fine without it, and yes, you may still find new customers and clients, but you’re missing out on critical growth opportunities.

Social media is an affordable and scalable communication medium that gives companies a direct connection to their clients, both existing and potential. Small corporations can run a social media campaign by directing only a few hours of time each week to monitoring profiles and generating content. Much of that work can even be outsourced for additional cost savings.

There are many ways to take advantage of the new opportunities social media presents, and you can begin taking advantage of many of those opportunities today.

Facebook

Facebook is not just a place to connect with high school friends and distant family members. Companies are increasingly turning to Facebook for promotion. By creating company pages, your audience is encouraged to “like” your page. This action will show up on their Wall, and it will also send a notice to everyone that is friends with that person. It’s a modern example of the old adage about telling one person who then tells ten. In this case, one person tells dozens, even hundreds, and possibly even thousands.

Offer potential clients incentives, such as entries into a contest or digital coupons in exchange for “liking” our page, but don’t forget to encourage conversation on your company’s page. Each time a client enters the conversation, this is broadcast to their friends, who may also choose to enter the conversation.

Twitter

Many companies are surprised by the number of things they have to say under 140 characters. Twitter, a so-called “micro-blogging platform”, allows users to send brief “tweets” out to their followers. The communications are rapid, and can often lead to discussions.

In some instances, clients and customers will use Twitter as an open forum for complaints. Imagine a complaint window where someone unhappy with your service is loudly explaining their complaints to anyone in earshot. Being familiar with Twitter will allow you to immediately interact with this person and remedy their problem. Various software programs allow you to “tweet” directly to and from Facebook, which means you engage two separate, distinct groups with one action.

Blogging

Though not nearly as fashionable as it was a few years ago, blogging remains an important outlet. Blogging is essentially a combination of self-publishing and website management. Instead of designing and laying out the order of a page, you can simply type an “article” or “post”, then hit publish. It will appear at the top of your blog’s page for the world to view it. Search engines will index it as they would any other web page, and search results will drive traffic to your site.

The best way to take advantage of this technology is through frequent posts. Make sure there’s always something new for people to read about, even if it’s only a few brief sentences about another person’s website, blog or news article. Many blogging platforms can also be synchronized with Facebook and Twitter so that when you publish a blog post, it is automatically sent as a tweet to your followers, and a link is sent to your Facebook page. Again, this efficiency allows you to maximize your reach with minimal effort.

These are only a few ways that social media can be used to your company’s advantage. Signing up for these services is generally a quick process, though you should consult with a professional that can help you link and synch your social media profiles for greater efficiency.