Previously, we discussed ways your company can take your branding to the next level in 2015. 2015 is more than half way over, but it’s not too late to heed our advice. One of the four components we discussed is Social Media. If your company is not on, utilizing, and actively engaging on your chosen platform(s) you are missing a major opportunity to elevate your company’s brand awareness.

This week, we wanted to take a moment to discuss the reasons why your company should be on Social Media, and how you can most effectively utilize the platforms.

Social Media may seem like a waste of time to some, but considering there are millions of users, or in the case of Facebook, over a billion users, on the platforms, Social Media is one of the most economical ways to reach your major client or customer base. Retail giant Walmart has over 32 million Likes on their Facebook page. While their brand speaks for itself, Walmart has leveraged Facebook as a marketing tool where they post deals, promotions and information about their brand. If you’re a small scale business, even though you may never reach Walmart’s numbers, having a page with your business information such as your logo, location, and hours of operation will aid in your Search Engine Optimization (SEO) – which helps to improve your ranking on Google, Bing, etc. – and will make it easier for individuals to find you if they search for you be it on the specific social site or on a search engine. Google Plus (AKA G+, or Google+) is also worth noting, as the platform is currently going through new changes, and even if your company doesn’t utilize it often, having the page created and maintained will help with your SEO and Google rankings as well.

networkYour business can be utilizing Social Media platforms as a way to provide important information to your customer base. E-Mail marketing is still alive and well, but not every customer will provide their e-mail address to you. Clicking “Like” or “Follow” and having pertinent information available as individuals log in to their favorite sites is much more convenient than scrolling through e-mails. Posting information such as current promotions, new locations, business updates, or even open jobs will allow your business to let your customers know what’s going on at your place of business without the high costs other forms of marketing may carry.

The platform(s) you should choose to utilize will of course vary by industry. It wouldn’t make sense for a financial institution to utilize Pinterest – a picture-based site, but utilizing LinkedIn and Facebook to discuss current promotions, loan rates, or industry news would make much sense. If you’re a graphic design company, Twitter may not be the best choice for you, but Instagram (which can directly post on to Facebook) would be perfect to showcase portfolios, work examples, and even mock-ups.

Finally, once you have profiles on the platform(s) of your choice, be sure to use them, and be social (it is called social media after all). Even if you don’t have the resources to post multiple times a day, or even once every day (though sites like Hootsuite and Buffer can help out with that), adopt a regular posting schedule and stick to it. Whether you choose to post a company update, an interesting article, or even promote your products is up to you – but keep in mind that you don’t want to alienate your audience. Take the time to reply to customer posts and comments on your page, and even Follow or Like other businesses as your business and interact on their pages too.

Even if you feel like your social efforts aren’t paying off right away, by leveraging social platforms, you’re able to build awareness about your company and show that you’re interested in your consumers. Social platforms are free to start, and if properly maintained, can spread the latest news about your business to your intended audience. While new ways to market your business may pop up regularly, social media is a trend that is here to stay, which is why your company should adapt now if it has not already.

 

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