What Is Social Media and Why Will It Help My Business?
Social media on the Internet currently are online channels or services that people use to communicate with their friends, followers, subscribers and other people who have liked interests. One of the unique features about social media is an ability to “like” another person’s message, read their experience of using a product or service, post reviews or comments, etc.
Some of the channels which social media are most apparent today are YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, and Google Places. There are also other online directories such as Insider Pages, Citysearch, Yelp, etc. So it’s important to be listed on all of these directories because people will want to talk about your business and tell others their experiences that they had in dealing with your business.
Hopefully these people will all be giving raving recommendations and congratulations to you about what they think of your business. Sometimes this is not the case and so these channels and directories allow you as a business owner to participate in a dialogue with anyone who posts a review or comment about your business-whether it’s good or bad.
For instance, if you receive a series of bad reviews about your company, your products, your employees, or your services, you have a chance to explain how you have since improved on the qualities that were negatively noted in the review or comment that a previous customer had written about your company.
On the other hand, if you receive good reviews you can also respond to the person writing reviews and thank them for their patronage and invite them and their friends and family back to your business so that you can serve them even more.
These social media channels have become the new word-of-mouth and referral facilities to promote your business (or hinder your business).
Business owners are finding that they want to continue to offer their products or services on the turf of their prospects and customers in the way that they desire.
When they do this, they find that they are rewarded with more and more customers referred to them from other satisfied customers. And if they don’t satisfy the customer, they find that these customers go to their competitors to get products and services.
The most prominent examples of these social media channels include YouTube (more than 300,000,000 visits each month), Facebook (more than 500,000,000 members), and Twitter (more than 200,000,000 members).
That is a lot of potential customers!
Another significant social channel for local business is Yelp! 39,000,000 monthly visitors use Yelp! And they combine local business listings with user ratings and reviews in a highly social environment. This allows members to subscribe to other members’ reviews, and thus promote other local businesses to other members. It’s a pretty unique and interesting concept when you think about it.
These new social media channels is the modern-day business owners answer to project a tailor-made, more personalized conversation with each and every one of their customers or their potential customers.
The secret to all this is that it has to be done correctly and your customer will love your business and what you stand for in your community. However if it is not done just right your reputation as a business owner in your town can suffer considerably.
For more details on how Yelp!, Facebook, Twitter, and other Internet “influence engines” can help drive your business growth and expansion, see the resource box at the bottom of this article to get more information.
Thank You Business Owners!
Brian B. Dawson
Customer Finder Marketing