Social media started out as something that marketers and business owners questioned. Publishers and bloggers would write articles questioning whether or not we should be using social media in our marketing strategy. Then, not so slowly, the conversation switched from questioning social media for marketing to discussing how to use it. We no longer ask why we should be integrating it into our strategies, but how.
For some industries, like e-commerce or service businesses, the biggest issues that they face are positive and negative reviews and timely customer service. Even with such challenges, the benefits of social media marketing for e-commerce and service businesses are still undeniable.
So, what are some benefits of using social media in all types of marketing strategies? Let’s explore a few.
When social media first started taking over our marketing strategies, customer service was one of the biggest hurdles for small and medium size businesses to overcome. The issues of time, bandwidth, and manpower were keeping many businesses from using social media for customer service. Now that we have chatbots these are nonissues.
Instead of having to hire and train new customer service representatives or social media managers, we can use AI and chatbots to automate most of that process. The benefits of being able to communicate with our customers in real-time are tremendously beneficial to customer retention and review management. You can use tools like MobileMonkey to create your own chatbot for a minimal cost.
Hyper Targeted Advertising
Advertising is an entirely new ball game now that social media has evolved and become an intelligence platform that we have fed information to. Marketers and advertisers are now able to use email lists, groups, interests, and many more defining pieces of information to target customers. Facebook and Instagram have especially taken leaps in hyper-targeted advertising. The ROI for some luxury brands on Facebook have seen returns over five-hundred percent for years now and those numbers have not been declining.
There have even been interesting advances in content and ad copy types. Some hacks include using emojis and videos to help reach a millennial audience. The more marketers know about social media advertising, the better. ROI has never looked so good.
Testing New Messages
Before social media, it would cost a company thousands of dollars to test a new advertising campaign. You would have to create the content and find the audience to test it in front of. Now that we have social media, you can test new types of content right in your feed, with targeted ads, and even see an ROI from a failed test. It is crazy when you see companies like Pepsi running video ads like the disastrous Kylie Jenner video when they could have tested it in front of social media users first. This would have saved them millions.
Some marketers have even proven that emails sent with emojis in the subject line have an increased open rate. They learned this while testing emojis in copy and ads on Facebook, then they used this informed piece of information to test the theory in email marketing. And it worked.
Testing new content types, media, and messaging on social media is a huge win.
Increased Brand Authority
This may be by far the most valuable gift that social media has given brands. The ability to find your current authority, your competitor’s authority, and use the two to increase your overall brand authority. Even Google agrees that there is no greater value than brand authority. It is really no wonder that most of Forbes’ most valuable brand list includes companies that truly understand how to get people to share things.
Coke is on the list as well and they create entire campaigns around “sharing.” They understand that brand equity and brand authority can be built on social media. They also know how to encourage the process required to increase a brand’s authority online.
There are many benefits to social media and the list will continue to grow. It is important as marketers that we remove excuses and work to improve and experiment with social media as it continues to evolve and change our craft. The returns absolutely out-weight the risks. Make informed decisions, experiment, trust the data, and follow campaigns that are doing well. Watch what the big guys are doing and have some fun. Social media makes everything more interesting and interactive.
Did I miss any major benefits to social media that you would have added?