Part 1: Should my company be on social media?
This blog is for c-suite executives with questions about social media ROI and its true capabilities within today’s competitive business landscape. In this post we’ll cut to the chase about what makes social media the talk of the town when it comes to growing a business and staying competitive within an industry. Read on to decide for yourself if a Social Media strategy should be a part of your marketing plan for business growth in the coming year.
The Merits of Social Broadcasting
Social media is word-of-mouth on steroids:
Most businesses merit some growth to the power of word-of-mouth referrals, and social media has facilitated a microcosmic network in which people are already inquiring and sharing their feedback and preferences on nearly every aspect of daily life. The numerous social media sites that have popped up over the last 10 + years have sought to engage these niche communities and bring them together to share their personal insights, interests and life.
Consumers believe what other consumers say more than what brands say:
According to research giant Nielsen, *92% of consumers believe recommendations from other consumers over all forms of advertising. With the rise of social media, consumers now have a form to discuss, share and air their views on every service and product imaginable. Bottom line, social media allows someone else to toot your horn for you!
Cost effective lead generation:
When comparing the cost of traditional media sources like TV, magazines, direct mail, conferences, etc. to online marketing channels, it may seem like comparing apples to oranges. However, marketers have been able to level the playing field by using a CPM (cost per impression) assessment. This cost is calculated at a rate of $1 per 1000 impressions (a single display of an ad) in that channel. A recent cross-channel cost comparison exposed the following rates per channel.
*Average CPM (Cost per 1000 Impressions) by Channel
When it comes to overall cost effectiveness, marketing via digital media channels soars over traditional media. Within that, social media is the consistent low-cost winner when it comes to paid online media channels.
Identify and connect with new customers:
Unlike traditional media sources, social media is a data smorgasbord when it comes to audience insights and targeting. For example, does your business target female homeowners in Walnut Creek, California, age 35-50 who make $250-350k/year, love the outdoors and own a dog? Social media provides the depth of data needed to whittle down your target consumers in this kind of precise detail! Email addresses and website visitors can also be similarly profiled with social media tools and used to deliver your brand message to customer communities who were originally unknown or out of your reach.
With the growing availability of both paid and free online tools, businesses can literally track a new client lead from awareness, to first communication and through to purchase, revealing details into cost per customer acquisition. The ability to follow such metrics allows executives the insights needed to evaluate the very best practices that yield the highest marketing ROI. These deeper insights and defined attributions, equate to less waste and more sales.
Brand awareness and credibility:
By becoming a participant in social communities, business leaders and brands have the ability to establish credibility and thought leadership among industry peers and prospective clients. The sharing of ideas, knowledge and being a contributor within online community allows the big fish, little fish and everyone in between a level playing field to network and form new business relationships.
Filling the sales pipeline
Social media is your sales team’s best friend when it comes to opportunities to grab facetime with tough-to-access people, and keep the referral pipeline well oiled. Those who are best at leveraging the tools and navigating the online culture have learned to optimize relationships within their communities to reach clients they never would have landed without their participation.
Your competition is already there:
In 2015, it was found that *83% of B2B marketers use social media to increase their brand awareness, and 92% of marketers say social media has generated exposure for their business. Given these numbers, it’s little wonder that nearly any industry that owns a website has also learned to leverage a social media presence. If you have one competitor using the tool effectively, they are finding business that you are daily passing by.
Still wondering, “Is social media right for my business?”. Find out how you can connect with customers online, by contacting Vende Digital for a free hour of marketing consulting and a free website assessment. Or, join our mailing list to receive updated articles that will help you evaluate what online tools might be the best investment for your growing business in the year to come.
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