Did you know that recent data showed that 90 percent of marketers are now using social media channels such as Twitter and Facebook for their business, and 93 percent of those rated these tools as “important”?
Brands of all sizes are now leveraging online communities to generate business exposure, increase website traffic and even improve search rankings, but what about sales?
Less than half of all marketers surveyed (43 percent) noted an improvement in sales courtesy of their social media campaigns. However, experience does improve results – 72 percent of marketers who have worked in social media for three or more years said that they had seen a direct boost in turnover.
Moreover, 91 percent of experienced marketers said that social media had improved website traffic, and 79 percent said that it had helped to generate more quality leads.
This infographic from Pagemodo takes a closer look at how marketers are using social media successfully.
The influence of social media on the conversion of sales is outstanding compared to traditional marketing. Being involved and creating a community using social media has never been as important as it currently is today. It is a proven science that a one-on-one interaction with customers creates a rapport between the consumer and the business. Building trust and loyalty converts into more sales PERIOD!
Most businesses have forgotten about the way our ancestors operated their businesses, and this is the biggest mistake that can be made today. Having a mom & pop shop mentality will give customers a comfortable and personable feeling towards your company, and using social media is the perfect way to accomplish this goal. Every customer should be interacted with, on one level or another. Interaction leads to trust and trust leads to loyalty. Gaining a customer’s loyalty and trust will lead to a word of mouth marketing campaign.
Word of mouth marketing is one of the most effective strategies that any business can pursue using social media. For example, a client compliments you on your services, and you then respond to the client on their social networking platform of choice. This leads to the customer spreading word of your company because of the personal interaction. Let’s say a fan of Starbucks reaches out to the business on Twitter and says “I love Starbucks Coffee”. Starbucks should then send a response such as “What is your favorite cup of coffee?” This leads to the customer feeling a sense of importance, because their favorite brand has mentioned them and took into consideration what their favorite cup of coffee was. Little things like this build a strong and loyal community. When a business can build a loyal community, then they will always be guaranteed sales and will expand their consumer base by existing customers spreading their business through word of mouth amongst social media networks.
People do not visit websites to find information about the best movie that is currently out, or what the best seafood restaurant is anymore. Consumers now find their information on social networking websites. If a Facebook user views a friend’s status and it says “Robs Seafood is the best!”, then the user will most likely check out what their friend has recommended, instead of what so called “professionals” prefer on other websites. This demonstrates how the word of mouth affect, using social networking websites, is one of the most important assets towards any business.
Social Media is an excellent tool to build a strong community that cannot be reached with banners, flyers, commercials, and other ad campaigns. Social interaction between businesses and customers is a growing trend that is increasing sales and growing brand loyalty by keeping in contact with a community on a day to day basis. 67% of shoppers who receive a recommendation from their social media graph are proven to spend more money. Also remember, one-on-one interaction with targeted customers is the key to a successful brand. Let’s take a look at how each Social Networking Site can be used to amplify your businesses community and sales.
Facebook currently has over 500 million active users and continues to grow on a daily basis. Gaining targeted local traffic towards your business has never been easier. Creating a Fan Page will give your business a presence on Facebook, and offer the ability for fans of your business to personally connect with your company and share this with others. A Fan Page consists of a “Like” button, which when pressed displays your businesses name on the person’s profile that clicked upon the button. This gives the opportunity for their friends and contacts to view your business because it will appear in their “Newsfeed”.
Your business could already have current customers searching for your businesses Fan Page to view news about your company. Businesses who are lacking a Fan Page are not taking advantage of the vast amount of local users available on this social network. A Fan Page can be used to represent business news, sales, and events that consumers may be interested in. When consumers are able to learn news in an instantaneous manner, it is more appealing to them than waiting for the newspaper to come, or commercial to air and announce your businesses news. Facebook is one of the best platforms to create social interaction with your customer base and create brand loyalty.
Twitter has just reached 200 million users in 2011. This is easily the second best social networking platform that is used to date for promoting businesses. Twitter’s unique service is excellent to present customers with live news. A “Tweet” is a 120 character message that is sent to your community, aka “Followers”. Locally targeted followers are a valuable resource to a company that is present on Twitter. When a user decides to “Follow” a business’s Twitter account, they are agreeing to receive updates from the company. With today’s consumer base having a short attention span, Twitter is the perfect tool to get news out with speed, and as little writing as possible.
The amount of “Followers” a business has is not as important as how targeted and engaged their followers really are. A company that has thousands of followers who are not targeted will cease to see the results of a business with 100 followers that are directly targeted and interacted with regularly. This social network can be used to represent sales, events, or industry news that your business may be having in a real-time environment. Most Twitter users use a mobile version of this social network. This gives the opportunity for a business to post a Tweet, and the user will receive it even on the go. Converting sales is easier than ever using targeted traffic and short bursts of information, which keeps customers intrigued.
Customers today do not have the patience to sit down and read an article. They are more interested in viewing an informative video. YouTube offers this service for free and has over 490 million unique visitors every month. By creating informational and promotional videos, your business will be able to promote itself on another leader in the social networking industry. Creating videos will convert sales in ways that a simple commercial cannot.
By placing a link in the “Learn More” section of the video, your business will be presenting the consumer with a link to your businesses website, or other social media accounts. If a video is created to promote a new service or product, the business can also place a link that leads directly to the offered service or product. This gives an ease of access to the customer. When consumers watch a commercial, they are presented with the brand and product, but have to either call a number or visit the businesses location to view it. By introducing potential customers to short and viral videos on YouTube, you will be promoting your brand as well as creating a social experience by using the comments box below to create discussion and interaction.