It drives me crazy when people call social media a “trend” or a “passing fad.” It’s just as much as a “passing fad” as the napkin is or apple pie on the 4th of July. It’s a full-fledged phenomenon and more small business owners are diving in daily. Shockingly, there are still some that aren’t and ignore social media out of pure ignorance or simply for the lack of being technologically savvy.
So many myths, misinformation and ridiculous claims are present in this industry that often business owners just throw their hands up in frustration and miss out on a huge opportunity in social media. Let’s clear some of those up, shall we?
- “My customers are not active in social media.” Baloney. Nielsen estimates that social media sites and blogs reach 80% of all active U.S. internet users. Social media reaches every demographic across the entire map. Your customers are other there – you just have to find them or make yourself available to be found.
- “Facebook is the only social media site we need.” You’ve got to be kidding me. Facebook is ideal for many businesses, but it is only the tip of the gigantic social networking iceberg. LinkedIn offers greater access to executive types and business professionals. Pinterest serves up women who are fashion, food and fitness goers. Twitter has Kim Kardashian (and others). Each network has a valuable role. Never limit your company to a single social media channel.
- “I must have 1,393,927 followers to make an impact.” Large audiences are great, but The Beatles didn’t start off with sell out crowds. Pursue quality of quantity. A couple hundred followers on Facebook or Twitter who are in your target market is much better than 10,000 fans that are not. Build relationships and provide value in your niche and the numbers will follow.
- “Pinterest is just another fad, it’ll fade.” Possibly, but not probably. Pinterest is the fastest growing social network ever. It’s so easy to get started too there is no reason to not add it to your social media strategy. Ignore it at your peril.
- “Social media can’t be used for B2B, only B2C.” Negative ghost rider, the pattern is full. LinkedIn is a great B2B platform and even Facebook has BranchOut which rivals LinkedIn’s professional networking capabilities. Large B2B organizations use social media in many of the same ways to connect with potential new clients and funnel them into lead nurturing campaigns.
- “I don’t need a social media strategy.” Good luck with that, Chief. Many business owners jump into social media without a long-term strategy, or any plan at all. In order for social media to be effective, you must be consistent, relevant to your audience and interesting. Without a systemized approach to social media it’s impossible for a small business owner to maintain a consistent presence.
Social media is a tool set. Use it as a bullhorn for your marketing message to reach a larger audience. But use it wisely – no one likes that guy who’s on the soapbox with nothing awesome to say.
Have all your doubts cleared up? Good. Give us a call at CPMarketing or shoot us an e-mail to see how social media marketing can target your local audience to bring them to you, before your competitor snatches them up.