Social media is an international phenomenon, with billions of users globally giving the biggest platforms a vast amount of power today.
From Facebook and Instagram to Twitter and LinkedIn, there are a number of narrative-shaping services out there which serious businesses cannot afford to ignore.
But what are the ways in which social media can benefit commercial organisations and how is this market likely to change in the future?
Table of Contents
Reasons Why Social Media Is So Important Today For Serious Businesses
- Customer engagement
- Employee productivity
- Website growth
If you need convincing of the important role that social media plays in the modern world, the raw figures don’t lie. Facebook alone musters an army of over 2.2 billion active users, followed by YouTube’s 1.5 billion strong customer base.
Even smaller platforms like Twitter and Reddit have around 330 million users apiece, so businesses that want to engage with people of all ages need to master the art of managing a multi-platform social media presence.
Creating viral content is just one aspect of this, although it tends to be the thing which garners the most attention in the media and draws people to a brand in the first place. The Casumo Twitter page is a great example of how a small but growing brand is achieving this, with its own unique spin.
The less exciting but no less essential role that social media plays in customer engagement is that of after-sales support. Consumers will no longer pick up the phone to call a company; they’ll head to their social media platform of choice if they need to ask a question or make a complaint.
This is a double-edged sword, as it means that there is also an expectation that businesses must be on-hand to respond to these interactions. This makes a social media presence a necessity, rather than a luxury if you want to avoid looking out of touch and unresponsive.
The customer-facing side of social media is the one which gets talked about most often, but it’s sensible for serious businesses to remember that there are also practical advantages offered in terms of employee productivity.
At their core, social media services are all about communication. So if platforms can be used to streamline collaboration between workers and optimise the way that information is shared, they will be all the more impactful and beneficial.
Being able to use instant messaging, voice and video calls via Skype, for example, will not only help employees stay in touch with one another across multiple sites; it will also make it straightforward to communicate with clients and consultants around the world.
Social media has removed the geographic restrictions that used to compromise so many potential avenues for growth. The businesses that harness these networking platforms are already reaping the benefits, and you cannot afford to get left behind.
Some social media evangelists might try to convince you that your business doesn’t need a website anymore, with social media accounts being enough to bring your brand to the masses. But in all but a handful of cases, this is patently untrue.
Having said that, social media is a powerful ally of any organisation that has found that visitor numbers to its site are dwindling and its search rank is stagnating. Engaging with customers on these platforms is just half the battle; the next thing you have to do is to get them to click through to your website.
Because of this pressure, it is a good idea to tune any social content you post so that it does more than just get likes and shares on social media but also helps to direct people to your site. This will boost visitor numbers, improve your SEO and ideally result in a rise in sales.
Courting conversions via social media is undeniably tricky, but with the right approach, you will be in a better position to help your website grow while also enhancing your presence on a given third party platform.
Another key to social media success is persistence. It is not enough to set up accounts, as they also need to be used regularly to help you gain any kind of momentum.
There are a lot of competition in the social media sphere, so serious businesses should brace themselves for a battle and be prepared to think innovatively if they want to grow.