If you are a small business owner, you have probably heard this line a thousand times: “Are you utilizing social media yet?” If you’re not, you probably roll your eyes, wondering why there is so much emphasis on it these days. After all, it has been difficult to actually quantify its effectiveness. I recently found an article on SocialMediaExaminer.com that just may shed some light on why you need to be looking into using social media if you aren’t already doing so. Here are some of the current social media trends:
- The benefits are continually on the rise. As business owners and marketers have continued to increasingly use social media, the benefits have become increasingly clear. Rather than counting on it for lead generation, marketers and businesses are seeing it as a way to create brand awareness. While it is not easy to quantify the ROI on this, brand awareness is no less crucial to a business.
- More businesses are investing in their social media marketing. This means that you risk being left behind. The good news is, however, that many businesses are not using it as effectively as they could, which means that you still have time to get in and leapfrog your competition.
- Businesses and marketing agencies view the value of social media differently. As I’ve mentioned above, it is typically quite difficult to measure ROI. However, marketers are finding an increased correlation between social media engagement and getting found online. With more and more people using Google instead of the Yellowpages to find businesses, it is easy to see how important it is to be found online.
- Having an integrated social media plan will make you more money. Several surveys have found that there are still a lot of businesses that have not fully integrated social media into their marketing plans. However, the ones that do are seeing a greater financial reward for their efforts. In short, it pays to engage your potential customers.
While I won’t come close to saying that social media is the great panacea for your business’ marketing woes, I will say that it is a very important cog in the machine. When evaluating your marketing budget, take the time to see how social media can fit into your overall plan. You won’t regret it.