Recent statistics show that not only do 90% of consumers now think that social media marketing is essential, but 73% of small companies alone are already using social media as their primary marketing tool. So why have so many companies still not jumped on the bandwagon? Maybe it is due to lack of knowledge or confidence, or perhaps it is simply down to lack of time; whatever the reason, it is a fact that small businesses may actually have the upper hand when reaping the benefits of this free marketing tool.
What makes social media marketing so effective?
The effectiveness of social media marketing boils down to two main things; trust and engagement. As with any other form of marketing, good communication with the consumer is vital. Yes, numbers are essential, of course they are, but it is far more important to have fantastic engagement with a smaller audience than poor engagement with a larger one. Cultivating a community of loyal followers, looking for reliability, honesty, and dependability, launches a company's success and keeps the consumer returning. A company needs to establish itself as the go-to place for excellent customer service and accurate knowledge while still injecting the personal touch into the brand.
What is the main advantage that smaller businesses have?
Social media marketing is all about developing a more personal relationship with the consumer, and this is where smaller businesses come into their own. The smaller the company, the easier it is to focus on the audience as individuals and respond to their needs quickly and efficiently. Consumers want to have a voice and want to feel listened to. This is something that more prominent brands can often struggle with; they lose that personal touch and can appear ‘scripted’ in their interactions.
WOMM (word of mouth marketing) is essential for small companies. With the right marketing approach, an online conversation can be steered in the desired direction necessary to create positive discussions about the brand; this is known as brand recognition. Social media is about people and communication, not just selling, which means that if a company’s relationship with its consumers is positive, then brand awareness will naturally grow.
So, do smaller businesses really need social media marketing?
In a nutshell, they would be crazy not to! Social media marketing is inexpensive, highly effective, efficient, and most importantly, personal. Customer loyalty and reputation are essential for small business growth, and social media is by far the best platform to assist them in achieving this.