What is social media marketing?
Social media marketing is essentially a form of internet marketing that makes use of social networking sites or platform as a marketing tool in order to gain traffic and exposure to targeted and existing customers. The main objective or goal of social media marketing is to generate content that is informative and engaging so that it can be widely reached and shared in order to increase brand awareness and visibility. However, in order to reach as many people as possible, optimization of the social media posts is essential. This explains why social media optimization is a key component of social media marketing and can be accomplished in two ways:
- Addition of sharing buttons as well as social media links to content
- Promotion of activities on social media through blog posts, status updates as well as tweets
Social media marketing can arguably be christened as the holy grail of internet marketing. It is the platform that offers guaranteed results so long as the right strategies are implemented and ethical social media practices are adhered to. Done right, social media marketing has the ability to increase brand exposure, customer reach, brand visibility and increase conversions.
Why do social media marketing?
As is always the case, there are always entrepreneurs who sit on the fence because they are rigid in embracing dynamism and change, and skeptical or ignorant of the changes in trend. In today’s world, operating a business without a website is suicidal. However, having a website alone is no longer effective if you have no presence on social media.
The following reasons should be enough to drive the benefits of social media marketing.
- You get an opportunity to get personal and up close with your target customers. Through social media, you get to keep tabs on what your target customers are interested in, interact with them and get a sneak peek of their interests through reading their tweets and FB statuses hence giving you an opportunity to adjust your marketing strategy and increase conversions.
- Immediate response to customer concerns or problems. Through social media marketing, you get to engage and interact with your customers in real time and as such can respond to any problems or issues related to your products or services.
- If done right, social media marketing will increase conversions and get you more sales. Social media marketing gives you an opportunity not only to put your business name in front of your existing and targeted customers but also an opportunity to offer them irresistible incentives which ultimately serves to increase your sales.
- It’s free! Believe it or not, you can handle your own social media campaigns without any additional cost. However, if you don’t have time, you can always hire an expert to run your social media campaigns at a small fee.
How social media marketing works
It goes without saying that most businesses with a social media presence usually focus on fan and follower acquisition. Businesses want as many likes as possible on Facebook and the same applies to other social networks. However, after acquiring followers or fans, social media marketing should be fashioned along the lines of fan reach, engagement and amplification.
- Fan reach
After working around the clock to acquire fans, the next order of business is of course to effectively communicate to them. The messages you post on your social media page should be optimized so as to reach as many people as possible. The posts you create should be engaging, relevant, interesting and informative and be able to reach as many people as possible through sharing.
Social media marketing works by giving businesses a platform through which they can interact and engage with their customers. By so doing, customers get timely responses, feedback and have their issues resolved within no time!
This is arguably the most important and yet least understood element of achieving brand exposure and visibility. Considering the fact that the average Facebook user has 150 friends, an interaction with a given brand has the high probability that the same activity would be broadcasted at least to half of a person’s Facebook friends. The more a person interacts with friends, the more likely interaction with a given brand would be broadcasted to them.
Advantages of social media marketing
If you are still not convinced as to why you should engage in social media marketing, the following advantages/benefits should be able to change your mind.
- Social media marketing is 24/7. People on social media are always awake at any given time across the globe
- Improved customer service. You can answer and respond to customer comments instantly.
- Easy distribution of content. A click of a button is all you need to share and easily distribute content to your audience
- Increased traffic and brand exposure
- Inexpensive way of marketing
- Enhanced SEO rankings