23 Mar #SocialMedia: Unlock its potential
Social media is the buzzword of the moment; everyone is talking about Twitter and Facebook. But using it as an effective business tool requires a little more thought than you could fit in a Tweet.
Social media isn’t rocket science nor is it a dark art, but you have to have the skills to use the tools. Photography is a good analogy; having an expensive digital camera doesn’t mean you can take a picture as well as a professional. It’s a mistake too many people make.
Social media should be used with a clear objective and usually as part of an integrated marketing campaign.
When you use social media you become your own publisher. If you want to create the right impression of your company, it is critical to have good quality content. Otherwise you can do more harm than good.
These are some of our key tips to help make your social media campaign successful:
– Update regularly: An unused social networking group or account reflects poorly. You engage no-one with an idle account.
– Avoid being too ‘salesy’ or self-complimentary. No one wants to just hear about how great your company is.
– Use it for the purpose it was designed: conversation. As well as informing your customers, you need to listen to what they have to say. It can offer important insight in to your product or service offering, and help you improve customer service –invaluable in an age when consumers are increasingly transient.
– Give people an incentive to interact with you: social media presents a great promotional platform. It can also give people a taster of the sort of work you do, or products you offer.
A huge criticism of social media is the difficulty to measure tangible benefits, but this can be done. Take the example of a small local business, which asked RONIN to help improve their Facebook page. We offered some straightforward advice, and since then the number of ‘Likes’ has rocketed – an additional 200 in less than a month, from which more than 175 people visited their website (compared to less than 4 in the previous month).
Social media alone has obvious benefits; driving traffic to your company website and raising your company profile. But when used properly, as part of an integrated campaign, social media can help you to improve customer service, tailor your product or services, and ultimately increase sales.