Everybody around you is talking about social media and you can see all your competitors promoting their Facebook Accounts, their Twitter Profiles and their pictures on Instagram.
Your organisation has a website that is already well-ranked in Google for your three main keywords, and therefore your customers can find you without any difficulty.
You also have been using Facebook and Twitter in your personal life, but you strongly disliked it: what kind of people like to share their private life on a digital wall?
Why would it make sense to invest your time, energy and money into something that will disappear anyway ? MySpace was the BIG thing to be on five years ago and today it just seems to have disappeared.
To summarize, you’ve been in business for many years and your company has always been (and is still) sucessful: why would you use social media?
Even though some social networks seem to appear and die almost every day, social media for business has a bright future, and more and more companies, whether they are B2B or B2C, are embracing it.
The wrong solution for you would be to simply ignore it just because you once had a bad experience with Facebook in your personal life.
Some businesses can certainly live without social media as there are many other ways to stay in touch with your clients and prospects such as by SMS or emailing.
If for example you are looking for a way to fill your restaurant during a very quiet day then using Twitter is not the solution. This is because your customers would have to be on Twitter at the time you sent your tweet or they would not see it. An offer for a half price meal sent by SMS on the other hand will be seen by every single person in your opted in database resulting in a much more successful promotion.
The point is that every marketing channel has it’s limitations but this is not a reason to dismiss it.
With that said, below are the six reasons why you should change your mind about social media for your company.
1 – Social Media is not that scary
It is simply a way for people to communicate with each other online. Today, if you want to exchange your latest holidays’ pictures to your friends and family, you can upload them on Flickr or share them on Facebook.
Twenty years ago you would have done the exact same thing, the only difference is in the channel you would have used. Back then you would have showed your photos in person rather than on the internet.
See, it is not that scary after all.
2 – There is a social network for every niche
If you are a chihuahua lover and want to share your passion with your peers, there is definitely a social network for it. You just have to choose the correct one and discount the wrong ones.
Let’s say that you sell holidays and tours specifically for seniors and you are wondering if your company should use social media to increase your revenues.
The wrong approach would be to create an account on the most popular social networks which are characterised by a younger demographic: Facebook, Twitter, and Linkedin.
Your target audience (people older than 65) are less likely to have an account on those specific social networks (in fact, only 32% of seniors use social networking websites).
Defining your target audience prior to creating accounts everywhere on the internet is the priority to build a valuable presence online.
If you consider social networking as just another way to talk to your customers and to reach your prospects then you already have the correct strategy.
3 – You can still be yourself
Some people who strongly dislike social networking do so because they think that they would need to play a role in which they are not comfortable. They also consider that social discussions are banal or superficial.
If you are one who feels this way, the good news is that you can easily be yourself and get involved in some very insightful discussions.
How? By choosing carefully which networks you are willing to spend time on. If for example you a B2B company, there are a gigantic number of excellent LinkedIn Groups that cater for your specific niche.
Cherry pick three social networks, read the discussions, get involved and you might be surprised by the quality of the conversations.
4 – You can still maintain your company privacy
Another concern about social media skeptics is the apparent lack of privacy.
Your customer database is your gold and you obviously don’t want any of your competitors to steal it from you when some of your customers subscribe to your feed.
Well, the good thing is that it won’t happen if you set up your privacy settings correctly.
For instance, on Linkedin, you can hide your connections to anybody outside of your network, hide your updates and even hide your profile picture.
People outside your network will therefore not be able to steal your contacts.
5 – It doesn’t take much time
Something that might also bug social media skeptics is the fact that managing different online business accounts can be very time-consuming.
Which is definitely true if you spend your entire morning watching your twitter notifications for retweets and mentions.
However with self-discipline and organisation you can achieve great results in the digital world without wasting your time.
To be successful, you will need to :
- Set up a proper timescale dedicated to social media (30 minutes per day is more than enough). If you are busy during the day with customers, choose to spend those 30 minutes early in the morning or in the evening.
- Aggregate your social networks in one single service (Hootsuite is in my opinion the best in this particular area),
- Use a service that will post automatically for you, such as Buffer. Set up 10 messages, add them to the queue: they will be scheduled for the entire coming week.
- Turn off ALL your social network notifications: switch off your email notifications and any other form of alerts. Interruptions kill your productivity.
6 – Google will love you for it
The fact that your website is well-ranked on Google today doesn’t mean it will remain so 6 months from now.
Social Media is changing the way Google ranks your website: the more people that share your links, the more Google will consider your domain to be an important one.
If you consider setting up a business blog (where you can, for example, answer the most common questions from your customers), you can set a Google+ account that will link you, the author, with the blog you are writing on.
This concept is called Google Authorship, and it changes the way Google ranks websites: follow this link to set it up for your organisations blog.
I hope the list above made you reconsider your hostility against social media for your business.
- We share very interesting links on our Twitter feed to help you grow your business, multiply your sales and increasing your footfall: get in touch!
- Business doesn’t have to be always serious: we use our Facebook Page and Pinterest Profile to share funny pictures of text messages that went horribly wrong, interesting facts about mobile or intriguing quotes from celebrities.
- Alternatively, come and say hi on Google+ and Linkedin.
However, if you really consider that it doesn’t suit your personality, you can always ask a marketing agency to take over this task for you.
What about you: Are you a social media skeptic ? If so, can you tell us why ?
Categorised in: Marketing for Business