Are you one of those skeptical but curious business owners who can't seem to grasp why social media is important for your business? You post once in awhile on Facebook, but deep down you know you're not using social media to its fullest potential. This is precisely where most of our customers start. They know enough to get by, but social media really is this black hole that they can't put their finger on. Last week we had a meeting with one of our clients and her questions lead to a great discussion about why is social media important.
Context for Our Discussion on "Why is Social Media Important?"
First of all lets give some context. Our client has recently done a revamp on their website with us, and it's ready to go live any day now. We are working on a integrated marketing approach that uses inbound marketing and with inbound marketing best practices social media is a factor. Our client started seeing all these "Pin this," "like," "follow," and other social media icons on her site and was confused.
She knew we planned to use them, but how? Why would anyone pin something from her website? It's not an exciting product, like women's fashion, it's actually pretty boring and technical. This lead our meeting down a path of explaining how social media could support her marketing strategy, and how involved she would be with social media. Below is a list of questions she asked, and our answers. We hope in answering some of her questions, we answer yours as well.
Real Questions About Social Media from a Business Owner
Question: I've seen the pin, share, like, etc. buttons on my site and I know we have talked a little bit about social media, but will I use all of these?
Answer: The buttons on your blog posts for sharing your web pages are there so that the user has a choice of where they want to share. So even if you don't have a Pinterest account, they can still share it on their own Pinterest account. Share buttons are different than buttons that link to your social media accounts.
Question: I am good at posting to Facebook for our business, and I made a Twitter account because I heard we should have one, but I just don't get why anyone would use Twitter. Why is social media important when it comes to Twitter?
Answer: Twitter is great for a business news feed. It can be used in a lot of different ways. Some technical businesses like website hosting companies use it to have current and updated customer service announcements. For example, a tweet might say: "email will be down for the next 4 hours, watch our feed for updates on this issue." This works great for getting information out quickly and with little cost or effort.
Question: Do I need all social media. For example, I have heard of Instagram, but I have no idea what it is.
Answer: No you don't have to use every type of social media. It is important to find social media that can affectively support your product/ service. Instagram works well for visually appealing products or services, like fashion, makeup, fitness, etc. It relies on pictures and videos. So if your product isn't exciting in front of a camera odds are Instagram is not where you should spend your time or money.
Question: What is Pinterest? Do I need it?
Answer: Pinterest is a social media tool that allows you to create a virtual board where you can organize pictures, web pages, ideas, and more! Anything that has a "Pin it" button next to it can be added to these virtual boards. How does this help a business? Pinterest is a great business tool for industries that have How to's, Do it yourself, fashion, makeup, home-decor, and other visual products. While visual products work well on Pinterest, there are some products that don't. In the case of our client we advised against Pinterest, because it didn't fit for her industry.
Question: What is Google+ (Google Plus)?
Answer: Google+ is a version of Facebook made by Google. We believe Google+ is evolving into a place for professionals. With features like Google+ Communities and Hangouts, businesses are being pretty creative with how they share content and interact with their customers.
I really hope these questions and answers have given you some insight into our work at Half a Bubble Out, and given you a few ideas for your own business. If you have other questions about why is social media important, or other business related questions, please ask them in the comments section below. We'd love to hear them!