The 2 Biggest Opportunities All SMBs Miss When it Comes to Social Media Marketing
Social Media Marketing. Everybody’s talking about it, everybody’s trying their hand at it, but if you actually spend time online interacting with businesses and brands that you like, you’ll notice that very few seem to actually utilize this amazingly functional and completely free means of interacting directly with customers to it’s full potential.
It’s 2017 and we’re headed full tilt into 2018. As it stands, Social Media Marketing is among the most effective digital market tactics available to businesses. Yes, much of that is a result of the robust ad platforms that Facebook and it’s competitors have been rolling out in the last 2-3 years. Social Ad Spend reached around 31 billion in 2016, it’s expected to top out at 35 billion in 2017, with no signs of slowing in 2018. But, that’s only one piece of the pie; to look at Social Media as just another paid digital advertising channel is to miss the biggest and most important piece of the pie.
In this day and age, the power of the discount and the personal touch with regards to social media marketing can’t be ignored by small and midsize businesses. Social media accounts for 1 in every 3 minutes users spend online and like it or not, consumers use social media to learn about and interface brands that they care about.
If you want to take advantage of this, there are two pieces of extremely low hanging fruit that will enable you to do so. Meet your customers where they are and give them what they want:
#1. Customer Service
Nearly 60% of Americans with social media accounts say that it has made it easier to get answers to typical customer service inquiries, so why doesn’t every business reach out and actively interact with customers via social?
There’s no good answer to the question, especially when you consider that 71% of consumers
who have a good social media customer service experience are likely to recommend that brand.
And customer service is already one of the top five reasons that people follow businesses on social media. Meeting the needs and expectations of your customers is a great way to build loyalty and build your brand.
Here are some tips to simplify Customer Service via Social Media:
- Customers expect a rapid response from a real person. If you have the resources, designate the responsibility of responding to customers via social to a team member.
- Set up as many notification streams as you can muster. Email, mobile push notifications, If This Then That automated notifications….any feasible means of alerting yourself to activity on your page should be engaged. It’s better to receive a ton of notifications in order to address a customer’s concern than let one slip through.
- Employ a social CMS/scheduling platform like Hootsuite. Not only can you monitor and interact with customers via multiple channels, platforms, and profiles all at once, you can also schedule posts, which frees up your time to be more agile with your response.
- When you respond to a complaint, offer a real alternative for the customer (a refund, a replacement, a voucher, etc.) Within the realm of customer service via social media, apologies, however sincere, only go so far.
- Don’t just respond to the bad comments or complaints. Make sure to respond to and thank those that post positively about your brand, thank those that leave a positive review, and ABOVE ALL ELSE, ANSWER QUESTIONS!
The #1 reason most social media users follow big brands is learn about discounts and deals. In fact, 53% of consumers spend over two hours a week hunting down deals and savings across all sources. Take advantage of how much time is spent on social media and offer deals, discounts and promotions to your customers where they’re most likely to find them. Here are two illuminating stats the reveal the viability of offering discounts to your social media followers.
With these stats in mind, it’s easy to see how offering discounts via social presents a viable opportunity for generating business and increasing brand awareness; customers are likely to buy more overtime while remaining loyal.
A big concern for smaller businesses when it comes to SMM is overall value and visible ROI. The good news is that with the right analytics set up, or even relying on the built-in analytics that come with a Social CMS like Hootsuite or Buffer, all your time, effort, spends, and returns are easily trackable.
We know what you’re thinking, but the truth is you shouldn’t be at all worried about alienating your audience or customers by interacting with them or offering them discounts. The prevailing thought used to be that users really did not want to be serviced brand specific content in their social feeds. While this may have been true in during the adolescence of these major social platforms, when they were all still wrestling with the question of revenue, it’s simply not the case anymore. In fact, 1 in 3 millennials have said that social media is their preferred method of interacting with brands.
In short, it'll suffice to say that not only do social media users look to interact with your brand, they expect you to interact with them. Don’t let ‘em down, eh?
And don’t get left behind; social media marketing is increasingly the most effective way to reach consumers and and build brand loyalty.
If you’re looking for ways in which you can bolster your social presence, and realize serious ROI from it, get in touch with Bonsai today.