Social media marketing has become a very important aspect in branding in this age of digitalization. Consumers are spending a lot of time online and the Social platforms are the major contributors for their buying decisions. According to an estimate, people spend a minimum of 30 minutes every day on popular social platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Reddit, LinkedIn, Instagram etc. It is thus a very effective means of online lead generation.
The concept of social media marketing has also become very challenging and confusing for small businesses that have just entered the game. It has the power to make or break a brand depending on how well or how poorly it is strategics and executed.
According to a recent survey by a Nielsen and McKinsey company, around 60% of consumers researching products online get information about a brand or company through social networking platforms. These social networking platforms are so versatile that most of the product reviews, customer feedbacks, product ratings and user info are easily found here making them the first place for the consumers to look for.
Statistics points out that a well strategized social media marketing campaign has a positive impact on your business’ brand building and can’t be ignored. However, more than 85% of young businesses are not sure which of the social platforms and tools would benefit them the most in marketing their brand.
The Impact of Social Media Marketing on Branding
Generating leads through social media is more lucrative to your business as it not only helps in increasing conversion but also allows you to engage with your customers, key influencers like analysts and investors, and gives a wide visibility to your business. If that wasn’t enough to explain the impact of Social Media on your business branding, read on.
1. Improved Brand Recognition
A person will remember you only if you meet them often, right? The math is pretty simple in the marketing world too. The more visible your business is on the social platforms the more consumers recognize and remember you. Your business recognition, product awareness, and brand exposure are greatly impacted by your online visibility and social media marketing campaigns you invest in.
2. Enhanced Trust and Credibility
Imagine getting linked by a popular blogger, a major influencer endorsing your business or some great content published on the social platforms that get the immediate attention of your audience. That surely screams of big time business credibility and brand awareness. People tend to gain trust on a brand by the number of people supporting it or names associated with it. We are talking about leveraging credibility to gain consumer trust on your business and this comes through a well-planned out social media marketing campaign. A 2009 study by Mext Consulting explains consumer behavior towards your business once they start trusting it. According to the study, of the total consumers who trust your business, 82% will recommend it to others, 78% will come back the next time they are looking for something, 82% will continue using your products and services and 50% of them would be ready to pay a higher price for your product or services.
- Enables better cold conversions
It is a common tendency of online consumers to choose brands that have a stronger virtual presence, especially on the social platforms. If you have an active and a quality presence in such virtual space, your business is sure to be a success in generating social media leads. Often, online audience search for a product or service rather than a brand or business. Hence, the consumer will get a host of other brand names as well with similar products and services who are basically your competitors in business. The probability of a consumer choosing your business over the others is greater in case you have a better social media marketing campaign when compared to your competitors.
4. Referral Marketing
Gone are the days when consumers went through yellow pages or asked references from colleagues or friends for a certain requirement. A virtual consumer nowadays has to only hit the search button with the relevant keywords to get a plethora of options pertaining to the product or service requirement. The consumer would then shortlist a particular brand or service based on its online reputation and after having a glance at their social networking pages on LinkedIn, Twitter or other related platforms. This would be basically done to ascertain their brand credibility, customer reviews, business expertise, business existence, brand values, and competency. The challenge is that your business would get a very short span of time to actually impress your audience and seal the deal. One miss on the social media marketing campaign would result in your competitor gaining a customer and you lose one.
5. Increasing Sales
Social media marketing campaign is not a complete sales strategy in itself but it definitely has a significant improvement in online lead generation and sales conversions. It has been observed that businesses who promote their business on social media have a greater chance at online lead generation than their competitors who don’t. It acts like a funnel to target a pool of potential virtual consumers to your business.
6 Helps in Increasing Brand Ambassadors
It is a common observation that when a consumer trusts your brand and starts using your products and services regularly, he/she tends to become a brand ambassador for your business and starts advocating it to others. More than 53% of active social networkers follow the brands they use and spread word-of-mouth endorsements of your offerings. They share their experiences, review your products and services or just give thumbs up (Like) or share to promote your business among their social contacts. More than 60% of the customer group between the ages 18-34 also actively engage in providing recommendations and improvement ideas which can benefit your business to a great extent.
Social media marketing has a huge impact on how a business performs in the virtual marketplace and the kind of recognition and awareness it achieves. While there is a risk of consumer complaints and negative feedback taking a toll on your business, the benefits will definitely surpass the negative effects and help you restore and improve your business taking your customers with you as you grow.
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