Good Afternoon, Social Rabbit here with your guide to the world of social media.
There are many good reasons why businesses should be using social media, these are the standard…
- Increase brand awareness
- Engage customers
- Build relationships
- Increase sales
- Build trust
- Get ideas
- Listen to customers
However there are also some others that are not mentioned quite as much….
People are chatting about your brand/business/service saying OMG I had the most awful experience and would never go again etc. You can listen to this and help change their perceptions (and others with it). By listening to customers via sites such as Social Mention or Addict-o-matic or even just using Google/Bing or Yahoo you can find out what is being said, is it good, bad or indifferent? You can jump in and nip complaints in the bud before they get out of hand, and therefore protect your brand.
Use the tools I mentioned above to see what your competitors are doing, what is working for them? When are they doing it? How are they doing it? What are they using? How often are they using it? Try to find out where the gap in the market is that you can jump into.
There are already a number of companies using Twitter (mostly) for customer service, eg Best Buy, Telstra and Cisco to name a few. There are also many Facebook pages using it as a customer service tool with people monitoring the pages continually.
Barrier to Entry
By building up a following for your business/brand/service/product you can create an effective barrier to entry that money can’t buy. Companies cannot buy trust and loyalty very easily, so for small businesses this can set you apart from larger competitors and effectively prevent others from entering your space.
Retention and cross-sell
This is similar to the selling angle that often gets discussed, but instead of selling products to new customers try to sell different products to existing customers. They already trust you, have a relationship with you, so it should be easier….
IBM used a gaming video to teach people about business process management, they made it fun, and by doing so changed the perception of IBM with uni graduates, so that they now want to join IBM. Here IBM changed the company perception and educated customers in a fun way. People who love what the company is doing will want to join, so they find you rather than you finding them!
Younger generation appeal
Similar in the way that social media repositions a business’ reputation as a fun, innovative place to work it can also widen the appeal of the businesses products and services. Coach bags in the USA crowdsourced bag designs because they wanted to appeal to the 14- 24 age group. Through social media they did this and so repositioned the brand in consumers eyes as appealing to them rather than something my grandma uses!
This is something I have experienced in my business where the team pull together to represent the business to customers. They like to be involved, particularly those who are not usually on the front line because a) they feel valued and b) they feel that they are making a difference.
All of these reasons are even more reason for your business to get involved. No longer is promoting your business about who shouts the loudest, instead it is about who is creative, innovative, up with the times and are playing where their audience are.
What do you think? Are there any other benefits that you are experiencing that I haven’t mentioned? Let me know in the comments below or on the Social Rabbit Facebook Page.