Social media has overturned everything we know about marketing and has ushered in a new media paradigm seemingly overnight. Many businesses have been born or even died because of Facebook, and it is now more important than ever to harness the power of social media to have an effective, relevant, and successful overall marketing strategy – both personally and professionally.
The current generation raised on Facebook views it as an integral part of life, so it is crucial that we as individuals and businesses learn to utilize this new medium to its fullest potential. To do this, we must remember that social media, unlike traditional media, is a two-way street. Traditional marketing, like a TV commercial, talks at your potential customers while social media engages them in a real-time discussion. And if your social marketing strategy is not executed properly, it can be very detrimental to your businesses. Social media has now made it essential for businesses to practice a greater degree of integrity and transparency because of the increased level of accountability brought about by sites like Facebook.
Social media for business will not drive leads like an effective website, but it will turn satisfied customers into loyal brand advocates who will in turn promote your business on your behalf. Word of mouth and referrals are still one of the most powerful marketing tools, and social media has amplified this effect exponentially. At the same time, it has also amplified any negative experiences your clients may have and post online to share with their social circle. This is why it is more important than ever to maintain a strong relationship with your customers by understanding their needs, communicating with them often, and providing solutions that offer real value. This is the foundation to success in business and life.
Social entrepreneur and Forbes contributor Naveen Jain has said that success is not measured by how much money we have in the bank, but rather how many people’s lives we have impacted through it. If we focus on relationship building and providing our partners with win-win solutions to problems, then sustainable success and financial security will follow. Social media allows us to develop these business relationships beyond what is possible offline and tremendously magnify their influence. Social media knows no boundaries – geographical or otherwise – and affords us the opportunity to communicate with our customers like never before. To stay relevant, your business social media pages should be updated often and share important facts, ideas, and expert insights from your industry that offer unique value to your target audience.