Businesses fail to thoroughly explore social media investments
Having an online presence should be as essential to a business plan as maintaining a physical storefront. Not only does it offer another experience to consumers even after they leave the store, potentially boosting revenue, but it aslo increases visibility and marketing for products and services just by keeping the site active.
Those who may never otherwise see a store can find out about its products and shop online even if they live on the other side of the world. It also helps increase access to those who otherwise have no way of reaching the store or want to do research before driving to the location.
All these aspects add up to making online ecommerce websites crucial to a company's success, yet a recent study by InSites Consulting shows that fewer owners are making use of the channel.
Diminishing market share
By avoiding the online community, owners may be sabotaging their own success. InSites Consulting stated that a recent survey found only 11 percent are using social media to its full potential for advertising and sales. Since the majority, therefore, have no social marketing in place, those that choose to move on this platform now may see even greater success due to a thin forest of competition.
On the other hand, roughly 40 percent of business executives want the rest of the organization to be aware of online initiatives, indicating they're aware of the importance but may not know the correct methods for implementation.
Four out of five organizations are already using Facebook and roughly half are on LinkedIn and Twitter. Since these networks also enjoy a higher regular consumer participation than other sites, it makes sense these show the best integration statistics. At the same time, though, the sites that are in disuse show that IT and marketing may not really grasp the uses of online resources.
The study also found that fewer than one third of respondents are participating on sites like YouTube and company blogs are below one third of adoption, while Flickr and Foursquare is below 10 percent. These sites offer an alternative experience for customers before coming to the business. They can check out videos of the layout via YouTube, view images of new products thanks to Flickr, as well as find a new place to visit while walking up the street browsing Foursquare.
Getting in on the trend
InSites said that only about one-third of organizations keeps a blogger or similar employee on staff in order to handle content creation, yet a similar amount feels that it is the staff's responsibility to put content online. Since both sides of the conversation are passing the buck, so to speak, it makes sense that little progress is being made.
That doesn't make it any less important, however. In fact, companies that understand the worth of small business social media and successfully implement it may reap more monetary and brand benefits than those without these tools.
An article from Brandignity highlighted the differences in companies that made use of social media and those that didn't properly manage these accounts. These tools allow corporate spokespeople and others within the organization to reach out directly to consumers and discuss bad customer service, thank those who posted positive feedback and add new information about company offerings. Increasing visibility and communication in this way is more likely to earn return customers, as these actions build customer loyalty.
One of the most important details that Brandignity points out is the range of individuals small business social media can now reach. The article states that everyone, from young children to the elderly, is now connected to some social tool. Even if it's not intentionally to research business or shop online, these resources allow businesses to reach out to a vast portion of the population and shouldn't be short-changed by any company, as they can prove a significant asset for success.This entry was posted in Beginner. Bookmark the permalink.