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5 Reasons to use Social Media for your Business

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You’ve created a Facebook fan page. Your company finally has a Twitter and now you’ve even set up a free HootSuite account to schedule out posts. Sometimes. When someone at your office thinks about it.

b2ap3_thumbnail_staring-at-phone.jpgAccording to statistics, 73% of Americans have a social network profile. That is 233.6 million people with just one social profile. One. Personally, I use Facebook, Tumblr, Twitter and Instagram multiple times a day. I get on Pinterest and LinkedIn a few times a week. My generation, and those younger than myself, are glued to social media. Think of how easy it would be to send one tweet and reach hundreds of people.

Not right away, mind you. Gaining social media followers may take some hard work, but the payoff is worth it. It’s a free way to interact with your consumer. How can you beat that?

Still not sold? Here are five reasons why having social media is a benefit to your business:

  1. Interaction – Other than speaking in person, there is no better way to interact with your consumers than through social media. While there is a certain negative stigma that comes with making yourself available 24/7 (not all of your employees may happy about it), you have the advantage of being able to reach consumers 24/7. A customer could tweet at you, asking a question about your product and, if someone is watching diligently, they could have an almost instantaneous response. Talk about helpful customer service! Speaking of customer service – someone leaves a nasty message on your Facebook page? Offer a response by giving them your office phone number. Put the ball back in their court and show everyone that you care. Start a weekly poll about something fun! Be entertaining and make people want to want to tweet at you, post on your timeline or send you a message on LinkedIn.
  2. Transparency – Being direct and not having a hidden agenda is the best (in my personal opinion) part about social media. It’s about having fun and interacting with your audience. Not trying to sell something. If people like you and your brand via social media, that will translate to your sales. Made a mistake that needs to be addressed? Put out a press release and then address it on social media. Whether you believe it or not, this generation of young adults – your future consumers – are willing to let mistakes go a lot more easily if you’re honest and upfront about them. Let the newspapers and your blog take care of the press release, but get your apology on social media as soon as possible. This generation, my generation, respects that. You messed up. Everyone does. Don’t hide it - that will only make the situation that more newsworthy when it comes out later. Show your audience that you are doing the best you can, no matter the circumstance.
  3. Humanize your Brand – The great thing about social media is that you can give your service or product human qualities. Do you pride your brand as being eco-friendly? Are you geared towards the modern business person or the weekend warrior? What would your brand be like if it was a person – take that and run with it in your social media plan. Say your brand produces sporting gear and equipment. You may want to focus on the words courage or determination. Your messages should always be crafted to insinuate those ideals. Has it been really snowy in your area lately? Throw up a post about thermal workout gear and never giving up. A sports star has done something bold and really great? Wow, they must embody your brand. Use those words and add them to your marketing campaign.
  4. b2ap3_thumbnail_tacobell-impresses.pngCreativity – There are so many directions you can take your social media presence. I’m a huge fan of Taco Bell on Twitter (they’re funny and I love tacos). And honestly, what is Denny’s even doing with their social media? Does anyone know? Not really – but it’s entertaining and hysterical. According to this post on the Social Times, Denny’s “embracing the weird” has put them in the #1 spot for “Brands Doing an Amazing Job on Social Media”. Having a unique social media strategy and being different just might garner you some attention. People like funny. People like different. Don’t be afraid to go out on a limb and try something new. Who knows? It might turn into the Thing that your brand is known for.
  5. Bragging Rights – Want to show how fun your office is? Take a picture at your staff meeting and put it on Instagram. Share that to Twitter and Facebook. Someone on your team won an award in their field? Copy the article URL and make a post on your company’s LinkedIn. Taking a company team-building retreat? Write a post about all of the great skills you’ve learned! Don’t misconstrue this. I’m not implying you need to post a status every time someone uses the microwave without complication or you recycle a piece of paper. That would be out of hand. But social media outlets are notorious for people posting their accomplishments. Take advantage and do what your audience expects – show them how awesome your brand is.

b2ap3_thumbnail_SM-buttons.jpgSocial media is happening now. Your consumers are online. Right now. They’re out there, waiting for you. Why wouldn’t you want to use free outlets to reach them?

Right! Mailing lists.

I’m not saying they don’t work. All I’m saying is that the only mail I open is what I’m expecting (I’m looking at you - books I’ve ordered online and my dreaded student loan statements). But take that as you will.

If this has sold you on create social media and dutifully updating on a regular basis, great! Now is the time to get started. Make sure that your pictures are high resolution and if you’re using more than one medium, that you keep a cohesive look. (Like using the same cover photo for Facebook and Twitter).

Happy posting!

Worried about the time it takes to set up all of your accounts and monitoring everything to make sure you’re posting on a regular basis? Here at Intrada Technologies, we offer education and services to help improve presence and develop a positive online reputation.

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