Social media is a critical channel for your organisation and but needs to become a key part of your business strategy. Below trends indicates that.
Social media is where your audience is
- a recent study shows that more than 50% of the world’s population is on social media, and 54% of these users use social platforms to research brands and products.
Social media is growing into an ever more fractured landscape, with new platforms arising daily as old ones die (MySpace, anyone?), but one key fact remains: social media as a phenomenon is not going away. Users worldwide are only increasing, and so is their daily use. It has become our main entrypoint to finding out about new brands. And it is where we increasingly go for quick customer support.
This is where your target audience is every day - so be there with them. Prioritise budget and be present on the channels your customers already use. Don’t let your organisation continue speaking into the ether based on old assumptions or organisational inertia.
Does your organisation have a clear analysis of what social platforms your audience use the most? How present are you in each channel? Will your customers be able to find you when they need you?
Social media marketing works
- 73% of marketers find that social media marketing efforts have been “somewhat effective” or “very effective” for their business.
There is no channel more cost effective, specific in its reach or full of viral potential for growth than as social media. As a marketer, you know your content is viewed by real people in the right segment - and depending on the platform, that segmentation can be extremely detailed today. Want to reach gadget freaks that appreciate your quirky brand?
Advertise on reddit, or cultivate an influencer already having the trust and ear of your target segment. Want to reach a very local part of your country with key government health information? Odds are, on social media, they’ll listen - and pass it on.
With a budget large enough, you can of course deliver effective marketing in any number of channels. But social media is unique in its organic reach and financial soundness. Every customer interaction is measurable, and every activity has the potential to gain broader organic reach – all at a very low cost possible to measure by ROI.
Is your organisation making social media marketing its priority in the budget? It should.
Social media is key to build brand loyalty
- 71% of customers who have a good social media experience are likely to recommend the brand to family and friends.
Brand loyalty is a vague term with very tangible consequences. Social media presence can make or break your customer retention, or your whole brand. 67% of consumers now use social media to connect with a brand at some point, and 54% prefer it to phone or email channels.
A key trend in the social media landscape today is the rising expectations on customer care: customers today expect to be able to reach you on social media with questions or problems, with 60% expecting a professional reply within the hour.
The good news is, when they do, they often become brand ambassadors - and that personal recommendation is worth any amount of well-planned marketing effort. Customers spend up to 40% more on companies that respond and engage with them on social media, and a positive interaction here will make a customer 3x more likely to recommend you to mothers. Simply answering a complaint can increase customer advocacy by 25%.
What happens when you don’t prioritise customer care on social media?
88% of consumers are less likely to buy from a brand that leaves customer complaints unanswered. Not responding to comments on social media can lead to 15% higher churn rate, and this number is critical to the bottom line - every 5% increase in customer retention can increase your profits by 25% to 95%. Help your organisation do the math.
Does your organisation have a dedicated social media customer care team? Can you provide fast and professional support in key channels? Do internal stakeholders understand the impact of social media customer care on the bottom line?
Proper social media management
Getting social media management to become key part of your business strategy will not won’t happen on its own. Your organisation needs to invest in a proper plan and management of all the social media platforms you are active on. If you have that in place you can benefit from social media. Read more about that here.
More from the author