“Follow me on Instagram!” read the text. “Amber __ added you on Facebook!” said the notification. Years ago, those sentences would have been meaningless, but today, in our personal lives, social media has become a vital part of how we connect with others. The same is true for brands trying to market themselves on social media.
Here are 3 reasons why social has become a key component of marketing programs:
Social media builds communities.
If you do it right, building your brand means connecting your audiences within a larger community. Social media allows people who are interested in a brand to connect not only with that brand but also with each other. For example, my dad only has 5 friends on Facebook, but follows every move of the “Game of Thrones” Facebook page. Creating engaging posts and great content makes social one of the most important tools in a marketer’s arsenal. It enwraps users into the loving embrace of a community bigger than themselves but in which they play a role – and makes them more likely to engage with the brand in terms of using/buying.
Social media is a microscope into the petri dish of user feedback.
Social media is one of the main platforms for consumers to express themselves, which includes both praise and complaints. You can probably remember the last time you sent out a Tweet praising your meal at a restaurant or complaining about an airline, for example. With a proper monitoring strategy, brands can keep track of their mentions and respond in real time – making amends or just letting customers know they’re listening and that they care. In industries where public image is everything, social media lets marketers tap into sentiment they might not otherwise get to see and convert brand haters into brand celebrators.
Social media lets customers, who you might never have known how to reach, find you.
Pretend you’re managing Pinterest for your brand, posting great content, the works. Someone goes looking in the feed of users they follow to find some great new content for their “wedding” board (I promised myself I wouldn’t make one, but I caved). They see that one of the people they follow has repined a pin you posted, one that showcases your brand of wedding planning services. You attract their interest, they re-pin the pin that caught their eye, and before you know it they’ve become a customer. Such is the seemingly magical power of using social media. You never know who you can reach by using social media as a marketing tool, and you can attract a lot of customers to your brand that might never have come your way.
This is just the beginning of why social media can be the proverbial claw hammer in your box of marketing tools – in other words, an essential tool that you can’t go without. Have any other ideas for why social media is your go-to marketing tool? Add them in the comments!