You do not ‘need’ to use social media for your business. But you are at a distinct disadvantage compared to those other small business’ who do. Those who use social media already have the opportunity to share their products or services or customer discussions to a much wider audience.
There are also so many other potential advantages as well.
You gain exposure to a much larger audience outside of your immediate geographic locale.
You may gain traction with a younger/older audience you may not have had in the past due to your current target market.
You gain the ability to offer instant customer service through being able to answer questions, or queries, in real time.
You have the opportunity through audience interaction to gain their custom, with an audience to know, like and eventually trust you. This garners more leads, word of mouth advertising and more sales.
You gain clarity in honing customer service queries and making your product or service better when people ask you questions or make complaints and you act on them in a timely fashion.
You may become an influencer in your industry as you gain exposure not only with customers but in your industry as well.
Others may see you as a go to influencer and you may become involved in industry talks or be interviewed by the media.
There are many concerns small business owners have that usually stop them from using social media.
I am not young enough, its the kids these days who are all over social media and know how to use it.
I don’t have time, I am too busy.
I cannot afford social media.
If I use social media, what’s my ROI? (return on investment)I cannot afford the service of social media companies, its too expensive.
I cant afford the equipment (For say creating video’s on Youtube)
These are all valid concerns. Its also often not having awareness of using social media or having a strategy in place that can be huge stumbling blocks for you the business owner who want to use social, but don’t know who to ask, or where to learn. You also don’t want to spend large amounts of money as a long term social strategy is great, but cash flow can be impacted severely until business social use starts to see a return to generate dollars (which can take months)
The most oft asked question is ‘which social platform do I start with’? The most often given response is ‘go where your audience is’. This makes sense if you are a photographer and Instagram would be the suitable platform for your work as its such a visual platform. For others, if you are a butcher, sending a customer an email with beef recipes after they purchase beef from your store may be a more suitable answer and following up on Twitter may be the way for your butchery.
Social gives you, the business owner, more power to bring awareness to a new, or existing customer base of your products or services. It also gives your customers the opportunity to ask questions and make enquiries of you. All this also with being location independent.
Over the coming months this site will answer those questions on being aware of social media and how it’s impact and use can help you as a business owner get more leads, enquiries and eventually sales.