Social media has developed a reputation by some for being a passing marketing interest, and therefore, an unprofitable one. The statistics, however, prove this idea wrong. According to Hubspot, 92% of marketers in 2014 claimed that social media marketing was important for their business, with 80% indicating their efforts increased traffic to their websites. And according to Social Media Examiner, 97% of marketers are currently participating in social media—but 85% of participants aren’t sure what social media tools are the best to use.

This shows a huge potential for social media marketing to increase sales, but a lack of understanding on how to achieve those results. Here’s a look at just some of the ways social media marketing can improve your business:

1. Increased Brand Recognition. Every opportunity you have to increase your visibility is valuable. Your social media networks are just new channels for your brand’s voice and content. Social media makes you easier and more accessible for new customers, and makes you more familiar and recognizable for current customers.

2. Improved brand loyalty. According to a report published by Texas Tech University, brands who engage on social media channels enjoy higher loyalty from their customers. Another study published by Convince & Convert found that 53% of Americans who follow brands on social media are more loyal to those brands.

3. More Opportunities to Convert. Every post you make on a social media platform is an opportunity for customers to convert. When you build a following, you’ll simultaneously have access to new customers, recent customers, and old customers, and you’ll be able to interact with all of them. Every post is a chance for someone to react, and every reaction could lead to a site visit, and eventually a conversion. Even if your click-through rates are low, the sheer number of opportunities you have on social media is significant.

4. Higher conversion rates. Social media marketing results in higher conversion rates in a few distinct ways. Perhaps the most significant is the way that brands become more humanized by interacting in social media channels, because they act like people. People like doing business with other people, not with companies. Studies have also shown that simply building your audience in social media can improve conversion rates on your existing traffic.

5. Higher Brand Authority. Interacting with your customers regularly is a show of good faith for other customers. When people go to compliment or brag about a product or service, they turn to social media. And when they post your brand name, new audience members will want to follow you for updates. The more people that are talking about you on social media, the more valuable and authoritative your brand will seem to new users.

6. Increased Inbound Traffic. Without social media, your inbound traffic is limited to people already familiar with your brand and individuals searching for keywords you currently rank for. Every social media profile you add is another path leading back to your site, and every piece of content you post on those profiles is another opportunity for a new visitor. The more quality content you create on social media, the more inbound traffic you’ll generate, and more traffic means more leads and more conversions.

7. Decreased Marketing Costs. According to Hubspot, 84% of marketers found as little as six hours of effort per week was enough to generate increased traffic. If you can lend just one hour a day to developing your content and syndication strategy, you could start seeing the results of your efforts. Even paid advertising through Facebook and Twitter is relatively cheap.

8. Better Search Engine Rankings. Search engine optimization (SEO) is the best way to capture relevant traffic from search engines, but the requirements for success are always changing. Google and other search engines may be calculating their rankings using social media presence as a significant factor, because of the fact that strong brands almost always use social media. As such, being active on social media could act as a “brand signal” to search engines that your brand is legitimate, credible, and trustworthy.

9. Richer Customer Experiences. Social media, at its core, is a communication channel like email or phone calls. Every customer interaction you have on social media is an opportunity to publicly demonstrate your customer service level and enrich your relationship with your customers. It’s a personal experience that lets customers know you care about them.

10. Improved Customer Insights. Social media also gives you an opportunity to gain valuable information about what your customers are interested in and how they behave.

These are the benefits of sustaining a long-term social media campaign, but if you’re still apprehensive about getting started, consider these points:

  • Your Competition Is Already Involved. Don’t let your competitors reap all the benefits while you stand idly by. If, somehow, your competition is not involved on social media, there’s even more of a reason to get started—the field is open.
  • The Sooner You Start, the Sooner You Reap the Benefits. Social media is all about relationship building, and it tends to grow exponentially as your followers tell their friends, and their friends tell their friends, and so on. The sooner you start, the sooner you’ll be able to start growing that audience.
  • Potential Losses Are Insignificant. Realistically, you don’t have anything to lose by getting involved in social media. The amount of time and money it takes to create your profiles and start posting is usually minimal, compared to other marketing channels.

Read more here. At Station Break we understand how important social media is for your business, and that's why we offer personalized, one-on-one social media management packages. Click here for more information and remember- there's no time like the present!

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