While marketing through snail mail, printed advertisements and such used to be the key way to getting your brand out there, social media marketing has lately taken over as the best way small businesses can reach a large number of customers for a fraction of the cost of printed advertising.
Popular sites such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and now Google+ give small businesses the opportunity to build and solidify your brand to the masses. By using these tools wisely and at their full potential you can reach thousands of potential customers.
Since social media is voluntary, asking users to sign in, sign up or follow, the followers must take action, encouraging them to interact and join conversations. These conversations help the business understand what consumers want and allows you to fine-tune your products or service.
Here are some vital rules to follow:
– Make your brand apparent to consumers. What message are you suggesting and how will it help you stand out from your competition? What is it about your service or product that keep your customers coming back? Once your distinct qualities are identified, use them to build your brand with your social media.
– Offer more than just your product to the consumer. No one wants to be sold all the time so providing helpful information to consumers is always a great “value-add”. Giving information freely and passing along other people’s tips, bargains and ideas will help build a relationship with your consumer and they will come to rely on your as a source of information.
– Make sure to track your results. You can use Google Analytics to do this and even sites such as Facebook and Constant Contact email marketing program provide analytics on their site. Make sure to take these findings and weed out what is working and what is not.
– Make sure to provide responses to inquiries and comments people leave on your social media sites. Staying on top of these comments will help provide dialogue with your consumers and ultimately create a relationship with them, generating insight to what they want out of your company.