Social Media, From Supplement to Staple
Social Media today has permeated the farthest reaches of Western Culture by, quite literally, transforming how we communicate. Naturally, this almost-overnight evolution isn’t exactly a mystery – it’s easily observable just about anywhere you go.
Yet, it’s still media at heart – and it’s also brought radical changes to how companies communicate, with both consumers and businesses. It’s become mainstream knowledge that you can leverage this new wave of communication directly into measurable income, and businesses of all sorts are tuning in. No matter the professional relevance to web or social marketing – you’ll find it’s becoming common for many businesses to hire content professionals to develop websites and social channels.
So, what’s the deal – is there real value in this for your average medium-sized business? We say “yes” – and in our experience, here’s why.
Having an active Social Presence for your brand gives you a greater chance of standing out amongst the endless sea of competitors. Simply put, the more you’re posting, communicating, back-linking and sharing – the greater physical space you will occupy on the web.
Get people involved with your brand by investing in quality content. Content is a powerful beast, and its’ tamable with the right mix of effort, discipline and research. Identify your audience, and create the content they are dying to read. Don’t make it a chore – leave ‘em begging for more.
It’s commonly speculated that in the near future, as networks like Facebook and Twitter continue to grow, they will have a stronger impact on your rankings than even common SEO practice. Speaking holistically; the influence you develop on these networks today could be a lucrative investment in your brand’s web presence tomorrow.
As we stated earlier, Social Media is about driving change in communication – and you can harness this to add a “human” element to your brand. Being active in Social Media allows you to promote your unique brand culture, and give outsiders an inside look into what drives your company.
From prospective clients to potential employees – they can see the day-to-day operations of your company in-action. If game-changing information hits the press, you and your followers can learn together. When there are triumphs or tragedies in your industry, you can experience them together. And if you’re making history, you can be sure your audience is on the edge of their seats watching.
It’s taking a step away from presenting yourself as a large, cold corporate entity – and taking steps to allow your brand to take its’ voice and shine. One could remark it’s degradation of traditional branding – but, we contend otherwise. You can still position yourself as the uber-professional organization; however, you want to be the organization made up of real-life, human uber-professionals.
The general public does not enjoy advertisements. No matter how life-changing your product or service may be - they don’t seek to be solicited. Traditional advertising combats this with “the big idea” – developing content that captivates and resonates with your audience – winning them over with an emotional connection over a saturated sales pitch.
Social Media brings the same opportunity to the table – using a more intimate medium. Advertise without advertising. Create a personal relationship with your users – and gradually nurture into a business relationship naturally.
Build an audience and cultivate it. Nurture them – provide information and resources you know they’re looking for. Be the guide, the guru, the unyielding source of critical information. Care about your audience – answer their questions and talk to them.
When the time comes when they need your product or service – there won’t be a moment of doubt – because the relationship is already there. They’re not cold-calling a big organization, they’re reaching out to a friend who they are confident will deliver.
We leverage Social Media for a wide variety of benefits, but these aren’t set-in-stone for all businesses. How do you use social media for your organization, and what value do you receive from it?