What’s All This About Social Media? Are You Missing the Train?

social media on potato chip bag

Take a look at this photo. It’s a bag of potato chips. Look closer. Do you see their social media properties printed on the back? It was important enough to this company to add social profiles to their packaging. They’re taking advantage of the opportunity social media gives them to interact with their customers in a way that was not possible ten or fifteen years ago. Is your business leveraging social media?

Even for small companies or those just starting out, social media offers benefits. Accounts are free and with even a small investment in time you can do a lot for your business.

The time is now for companies to add social media to the top of their list of things to do, but deciding on a game plan requires a couple of considerations. One, how will social media affect or reflect on your business? Also, what are the downsides of not engaging in social media? Different businesses may see different results from social media, but studies have shown that almost 80% of small- to medium-sized firms have gained an upwsing in website visits by employing social media sites. Results may vary, of course.

Various surveys have been performed on the quantity of people today that use social media websites and the way they can have an effect on internet marketing methods. One such study confirmed that eighty-four percent of U.S. firms felt it in their best interests to develop new strategies to interact with their audience, customers or potential customers, utilizing tools like social media and mobile marketing and advertising. As evidenced by our potato chip bad, it’s apparent that social media is firmly cemented into the lives of a vast majority of American consumers and companies. Millions either log in to their Facebook account to give updates on their status (whether wanted by the rest of us or not) or they’ll tweet something on Twitter. For better or worse, the current presidential campaign has shown just how important social media can be due to Donald Trump’s heavy Tiwtter usage. Looking at Facebook’s recent Q1 financials, 665 million used the social media giant each day. Think about this staggering number. Consider it as a potential customer base and consider also how much potential revenue you are losing by not being plugged in to social media.

Looking at a 2008 social media study, we find other staggering statistics:

60% of U.S. residents use social media

90% of well-known corporations are present on social media

85% of those companies use their social media as a method of interaction with their customers

The survey also found that consumers and businesses use social media to aid them in the following areas:

-Solving a problem (43%)
-Getting feedback or consumer suggestions (41%)
-Buyer interaction with a company (37%)
-For branding or marketing to consumers (twenty five%)

With statistics like these it’s easy to see why companies seek to leverage the use of social media. If consumers search these companies out on social media websites, it is a good indication they really want to communicate with a company. It is a signal that should be ignored at peril. Businesses will need social media because their consumers live there. As we mentioned before, all that’s required is sign up for an account (or accounts), make good use of images, update continuously, and be prepared to communicate with customers.

This is the way things work now. Entities like Facebook and Twitter are not going away and will continue to be an essential part of business for the foreseeable future.