Want to really improve the outreach of your business in Austin? Social media marketing offers a unique blend of outreach, branding, research opportunity, and networking—the perfect cocktail to take your Austin business to the next level, if you’re willing to invest in the tools, knowledge, and earnest effort necessary to make the most of it. Wondering how? Just check out these nine ways a social media campaign can change your business:
Branding. The way you talk to people on Twitter or Facebook tells them a lot about your business. If you’re firing off posts blindly, that might not be a good thing… however, if you’re thinking about your social media; running a structured, thoughtful campaign, you gain an incredibly potent tool for shaping your image. Post jokes, stay serious, get involved in causes or stay objective, the decisions are yours.
Networking. Getting involved in the communities associated with your products can do a lot for your business, as can reaching out to other Austin businesses to forge closer ties with the business community. Play your cards right, and you won’t just get your name in front of the right eyes—you can use social media to establish yourself in a position of authority on various topics, putting you in a very strong position to build partnerships and deals that are favorable to your business.
Market Research. It’s quite simple. Make some noise on your social media accounts, posting to hashtags and pages and other communities that are relevant to your market, your product or your industry. Then, see what people say back. You can learn a lot from this sort of unscripted, natural market research, free from the sort of self-selection which taints so very many polling samples. It’s useful to see how people really talk about products and services you might offer, and what else they care about.
Customer relationships. Social media gives your business an opportunity to engage with real people who have real problems around Austin. This presents a unique opportunity. You may not want to turn your social media accounts into a backdoor to your customer support system, but getting out there and being proactive in answering questions and offering assistance will improve the way current customers view your company. Which is important for so many reasons, not the least of which is…
Word-of-Mouth. When you start making noise, people are going to start talking about you. What they have to say will largely depend upon what they already think about your business; if you’ve run smart marketing campaigns and focused on good customer relationships, you’re going to get positive word-of-mouth.
Lead Generation. If you offer enough value to people on Twitter or Facebook, you’re going to get leads sooner or later. Not everyone needs to jump through a million marketing hoops before they become a valuable lead—sometimes, you just need to get your name out there and associated with something vaguely positive, and the leads will come all on their own. Even better, the way you present yourself on social media can in fact shape the leads you generate, cutting down on time wasters and improving the number of qualified potential customers your sales agents talk to.
Segmentation. As you interact with customers on social media, you’re going to get a glimpse into their life beyond who they are as a buyer—which means a fresh opportunity to spot unique segments within your market, the sort of segments which can refine your marketing to new levels and drive your sales closure percentages way, way up. Spotting groups lets you know why individuals buy the way they do, which in turn allows you to create ‘individualized’ marketing and sales approaches on a broader, more efficient level.
Site Traffic. When you make noise on social media, and people like the sound of it, they check out your site. If your site is well-built with effective landing pages, plenty of fresh content, a layout tailored to funnel visitors to action, etc., that’s going to make you money. If it’s not well-built, you should go fix your site. There’s not much point to a strong social marketing campaign if the rest of your web presence isn’t equally up-to-date and strategically built.
SEO. When you get people relinking to something you posted to your social media, you create the sort of natural backlink profile that SEO specialists dream about—the sort of backlink profile that drives you up the Google page ranking without trick or trap; no update to Google’s algorithm will punish you for this sort of honest attention for your website. And that’s ignoring the direct traffic such sharing of your links and content will earn you.
Display Value. Nothing promotes a business better than showing the value you offer to a broad audience. When you offer worthwhile content related to your product or service for free via social media, your audience is going to sit up and pay attention—and they’re going to think, “If this is what they offer for free, just how valuable is something they’re charging for?”
There you go—ten reasons to make the most of social media for your Austin business. No matter how little the overlap between your target market and social media users may be, there’s always opportunity to be had, in branding and other avenues. So go get to work, and make the most of this potent new tool in your marketing toolbox.