There was a time when using social media platforms to attract customers to your business – and thereby optimise its performance – was considered optional. Nowadays, however, with an increasing number of businesses using this method of promoting their goods and services and more and more potential customers signing up to one or more social media platforms it is considered to be an integral part of a business’s marketing strategy. Here are what we consider to be the top five reasons why your business needs to take social media seriously.

  1. Reach

Social media platforms such as Facebook, Linkedin and Twitter have hundreds of millions of users, in hundreds of countries around the world, who spend literally billions of hours of engagement every month. Although the burgeoning growth in the number of users may be slowing, social media still represents the easiest, fastest and least expensive way of showcasing your business to a massive group of potential customers. In fact, using social media as part of your marketing strategy can be free unless you elect to promote your advertising.

  1. Targeting

One of the principal advantages of social media platforms is that they enable you to collate a considerable amount of data about your visitors. This means that you can use the platform’s tools to access information relating to the identity of your customers, their location, their sentiments about your product, their interests and preferences and much, much more. If your use this data properly, it will enable you to skilfully direct your social media strategy to your targeted audience and enhance the opportunity for generating new business.

  1. Optimising your online presence

Because social media has such an extensive reach, it is a perfect way of directing potential customers to your business website. If you have a small to medium sized business it is unlikely that you will be able to afford a paid online search engine optimisation campaign of the type utilised by major organisations, limiting the visitors to your site to those who are already familiar with your business and its products. Obviously, this will not bring in new business. Using social media, however, you can generate a completely new channel through which you can target and accumulate targeted inbound website traffic.

  1. Interacting with your customer base

Consumers put a great deal of importance on customer service. Social media enables business to interact with its customers and, just as importantly its potential customers, in real time. If you ensure that this interaction opportunity is used properly, you will be able to create an online partnership with your platform’s visitors, creating, in them, a feeling that you are attuned to their views and responsive to their opinions about your brand.

  1. Cost

As already mentioned, social media advertising can be achieved free of charge. Even if you decide to use one of the chargeable tools to market your business, it is still going to be considerably cheaper than other forms of advertising such as television, radio and newspapers. You are also able to scale the extent and the cost of your advertising according to the financial position of the business from time to time.

Social media is clearly here to stay. Its importance, as a key component of marketing your business, is something that needs to be taken seriously if all of its opportunities are to be exploited.