While many refer to it as social media, others simply call it social network or new media. Social media in very simplistic terms refers to online communication channels dedicated to community-based input, interaction, content sharing and collaboration of all sorts. Some widely used social media sites includes Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube and LinkedIn.
1. FACEBOOK: Most popular of the pack. Allows registered users to create profiles, upload photos and videos, send messages and keep in touch with friends, family and colleagues. It is largely the number one choice for boosting your business.
2. TWITTER: A free microblogging service which allows registered members to broadcast short posts called tweets. Twitter members can broadcast tweets and follow other users’ tweets by using multiple platforms and devices.
3. INSTAGRAM: This is an online photo sharing social web service that lets you share your life with friends through a series of pictures captured with a mobile device. It works best with an app.
4. YOUTUBE: This is a video sharing service that allows users to watch videos posted by other users and equally upload videos of their own.
5. LINKEDIN: The catch of this particular site is its distinct design for the business community. The goal of the site is to allow registered members to establish and document networks of people they know and trust professionally.
While many see social media as an avenue to while away time and data interacting with others, many are yet to take maximum advantage of the immense business opportunities which social media offers.
So how can someone boost a business via social media?
A.It is the cheapest means of advertising your business and services:
Within a relatively short span, social media has radically demystified and revolutionized the advertising industry cost-wise. Traditional advertising (TV, radio, print, billboards etc) can be quite expensive, however with digital media, reaching out to clients/prospects is a lot easier and inexpensive. Now you have the opportunity to run target based adverts on either Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or YouTube at a fraction of the cost of traditional advertising. You can also join professional like-minded groups online to network and showcase your business and services.
B. Direct interface with your clients and prospects:
At the click of a touch pad, people can zoom into your space and see what you offer. Distance is no longer a barrier .The digital space has melted thousands of kilometers into few seconds of direct real time access. This leads to higher rates of call-to-action, engagement and conversions.
C. Opportunity to gain added business knowledge:
It is often said that knowledge is not power, rather it is the wholesome application of knowledge that is power. Using social media, you gain requisite knowledge and tips from others in similar fields like yours that can be applied to your business. Are you a graphic designer, baker, tailor, chef or auto dealer? With new media, you have endless access to millions of outstanding like minds around the globe from whom you can learn a thing or two that can boost your practice.
D. Makes you a thought leader and a go-to source:
People who consistently tweet or post relevant content about a particular field of human endeavor or business, overtime gain an army of loyal followers who see them as authorities in their chosen field or business. So frequently update your product offerings, services and upcoming events.
E. Social media encourages two-way communication:
The underlying edge here is, it gives you the power to learn more about your audience; their interests and collect feedback that will aid your business. Ask your customers to share their thoughts, questions and ideas. This will help you know them better. You can respond just as fast without having to pick up the phone or worry that the customer isn’t seeing your response. Wisely use this opportunity to grow your business.
F. Boost your customer service:
Customer care is paramount in every business and service industry. With social media, you now have a platform to provide memorable customer experience for your clients. Daily monitor your social media page for customer feedback and offer a response as quickly as possible. Customers are watching and often gauge how often you respond to enquiries. Research has it that businesses that engage with customer service requests via social media tend to earn 20-40% more revenue per customer! Sounds unbelievable…but it’s true!
So what are you waiting for? Daily apply these tips/hacks and watch your followers become your clients within the shortest time frame.