There are numerous ways that social media can be used by businesses to increase their customer base and revenue. Many of these are free or very cheap. Others will seem cheap once a company reaps the benefits. Using internet resources such as Facebook, Twitter, Digg and other sites is fast replacing conventional advertising, but advertising is still a skill in itself.
The temptation is for a company to do all of the work in-house because they can, and this saves money. Someone with computer acumen might run his business and design an internet campaign. Without advertising knowledge, however, this could be a waste of time. Few individuals seem to possess advertising, business, and computer skills strong enough to do all of the necessary work to build a fan base for a product or service.
Typically, qualified people are hired to handle marketing and it is common for the current generation to have strong computer skills to go with this advertising knowledge. If a firm is run by just one or two people who really know their product but not marketing and computers, then these co-owners will hire someone to build an effective internet campaign.
The value of internet resources cannot be overstated. People walk around everywhere with internet-connect, mobile devices. Broadband access is expanding. Coffee shops and hotels provide free wireless services to customers who combine business with caffeinated pleasure. With so many people connected for several hours every day, the market to be reached is huge.
At the same time, it is wise to understand who your market is and focus your efforts. Behave as though you know this audience because you are one of them. An invitation thrown out to just anyone does not sound appealing or thoughtful. It is ill-considered and unpopular. The kind of message that gains a company ground is the one that sounds like it was meant just for the individual, only it will reach thousands of individuals simultaneously.
Of course, all of these consumers have the option to ignore what you are selling, but unlike the cold call received at dinner time, accepting the invitation to look more closely at a Facebook campaign or a blog site is the consumer’s choice. He or she is tantalized by an advertising angle and chooses to pursue it because it sounds interesting. More importantly, it looks interesting too.
Thanks to experts, your campaign can be a multi media experience involving written slogans, powerful images, and also video clips which demonstrate how a product works. Better still, it can be interactive. Invite consumers to take part in quizzes which show that you want to know what their ideal organic nappies or environmentally friendly light fixtures would look like. Show that you do not presume to know their inner most wishes as though you were some wizard and clients will begin to ‘like’ you and become your ‘fans’, selling your name in the old fashioned way: by word of mouth. The only difference is that their word will be sent via e-mail.