40 Social Media Content Ideas for Your Restaurant
We all know how important social media is a tool people use to make purchasing decisions. This is especially true when it comes to choosing where to eat — people just seem to love sharing and searching for photos of food. So much so in fact, according to TouchBistro, 41% of people have decided to eat at a specific restaurant based entirely on positive social media feedback.
So you’re a restaurateur that’s sold on getting social and you’ve created your profiles, but what next? Anyone who has ever created a social media account will, at some point, know the difficulty of coming up with fresh content. Many find it overwhelming to navigate the world of social media as it is, but throw in trying to run your actual business at the same time as well… well it can all just get a bit overwhelming can’t it.
Restaurants are one of my favourite businesses to work with as social media content is literally everywhere! It’s just that you may not be recognising it as such. That’s why I’ve created this handy PDF that’s free to download that you can reference whenever you’re feeling a bit uninspired for content. Why not try one of these fresh ideas for your next Facebook, Twitter or Instagram post…
Still feeling a bit overwhelmed with it all? Why not book a meeting so we can talk it through? Or if you just want social media off your plate… I can help you there too.
How To Generate Leads Through Social Media
Social media is much more than just a way to grow your brand and connect with your current customers. When done correctly, you can actually use platforms like Facebook, LinkedIn and Instagram to generate real leads for your business!Continue reading
How to Make Your Social Media Presence More Accessible
Little changes equal a big difference in making your social media more accessible for people who are blind and partially sighted. The changes you make don’t need to be drastic, most blind and partially sighted people are likely to have their own ways (such as magnification software or Braille displays) of making social media accessible. So, these tips are really about making a few small changes so that your posts can reach and be enjoyed by everyone.
Add Image Descriptions
Putting alternative text (alt text) on your images describes photos for people who are blind or partially sighted is very important as it allows them to build up a mental picture of what someone who is sighted is seeing. You do not need to describe every single detail of the image; a voiceover reads out your description so you certainly wouldn’t want to create a 1000-word one that’s full of irrelevant information. Just pick out a few key details that accurately but succinctly paint the picture.
How to add image descriptions on different social media platforms:
Facebook: With Facebook, you need to include a description in the text of your post. Write your post first and then tag the alt text onto the end of the post. It’s common to put your image description in brackets to separate it from the rest of the post.
Instagram: When adding a caption to your image, click on “Advanced settings” and then select “Accessibility”. You’ll then have the option to “Write alt text”.
Twitter: With Twitter, you can add a separate image description to an image. To do this you will need to activate the ‘Image Descriptions’ feature, which you can find in “Twitter Settings”, under the “Accessibility” tab. You’ll then actually be prompted each time you upload an image to “describe this image”.
It’s worth nothing that Facebook and Instagram have introduced automatic alt-text, a feature that uses artificial intelligence to recognise objects within images and create a description for the image. There are two things to note on these platforms:
- Auto-generated alt-text cannot be turned off. Every image you upload will have auto-generated alt-text, making it extremely important that you check the accuracy of the alt-text and edit accordingly. Because of this, you don’t add alt-text on Facebook, you edit the auto-generated alt-text.
- You can only edit alt-text on a desktop computer or iOS device.
Use CamelCase in Hashtags
Whenever you’re using hashtags, always use CamelCase (capitalise the first letter of every word). Not only does this make it easier for every user to differentiate words, it also assists screen readers in reading the hashtag for those with visual or reading disabilities. For example, #WriteYourHashtagsLikeThis instead of #WRITINGYOURHASHTAGSLIKETHIS or #likethis.
Don’t Go Emoji-Crazy
A screen reader software reads out a description for every single emoji which is used, so be careful with the amount of emojis you include. For example, if someone puts four heart emojis, the software will read out “heart heart heart heart” this wouldn’t be very pleasant to keep hearing, not to mention it would be very annoying if a post was flooded with emojis!
Videos: Do you Audio-Describe or Not?
Videos don’t need to be audio-described, as long as they are audio-led. This means that the audio must be as important as what’s on screen – the video should send the same message, both audibly and visually. If it doesn’t, try to add a description of what happens in the video as part of the caption. To make them fully accessible, videos should have subtitles where possible. There are lots of apps available which make adding subtitles to your videos easy such as Camtasia.
Remember That Disability Representation Matters
Represent people with all kinds of levels of ability, including temporary disabilities like injury or limitations. This applies to all the content you share — photos, videos, written. If you’re a looking for an image, consider using a photo or artwork that includes disabled people. If you can, hire disabled photographers and artists who can best portray what it means to have a disability.
Create Trigger Warnings
With so much violence/upsetting content shared on social media, trigger warnings allow individuals to decide whether they want to interact with posts that could cause emotional or physical distress. Use the word “TRIGGER WARNING” followed by a space before your post, will tell an individual if there will be sensitive topics addressed in the content. You never know the history of others who are reading your posts, and so you might consider warning for things like assault, violence, blood, or any number of other sensitive topics.
BONUS: Keep alert for new accessibility features
Now that you’re a bit more informed on know how to make your social media posts accessible for everyone, you’re all set to share your message! But don’t forget to regularly check for new accessibility features on the relevant platforms you use.
Would you like a bit more advice on making your profiles more accessible? ℹ️ Let’s chat about it!
Powerful Call to Action Phrases You NEED to Use in Your Social Media Content!
Having thousands Facebook Likes or Instagram followers is great, but it doesn’t mean anything if those followers never take any action. Whether it’s a tweet, blog title or text in your ad, every word you share in an update needs to inspire people to do something beyond just reading it. Words are very powerful and for social media to be a successful addition to your marketing strategy you must learn how to right copy that converts!
What Does a Call to Action Mean?
A call-to-action (CTA) is an image or text that prompts your visitors, leads, and customers to take action. It might be signing up for your email list, buying a product, investing in a service, or following you on social media.
- Almost 90 percent of website visitors read headlines and CTA copy. Many of them don’t read anything else.
- Full-screen CTAs, such as exit popups you create through Hello Bar, perform better than any other position for CTAs (up to 25 percent conversion rate).
- Color can make a huge difference in whether or not people click on CTAs.
- More than 90% of visitors who read your headline also read your CTA copy. (Unbounce)
- Emails with a single call-to-action increased clicks 371% and sales 1617%. (WordStream)
- Adding CTAs to your Facebook page can increase click-through rate by 285%. (AdRoll)
- By forcing visitors to watch an informational video on their services before presenting a CTA, Kimberly Snyder increased conversions by 144%. (QuickSprout)
- For KISSmetrics, a CTA within a video gets 380% more clicks than their normal sidebar CTAs. (QuickSprout)
CTA Phrases to Persuade
If your intent is to persuade people to choose your product/service, here are several phrases to try incorporating into your call to action:
- “Try it free now” or “Start your free trial now” Everyone loves a freebie. This CTA is good because instead of straight up asking a prospect to hand over money for your product/service, you’re offering a free ‘test drive.’
- “Join now and get…” Here you’re simply asking your audience to reply to your message to get something of value in return. It could be an e-book, a free sample, or a template, just make sure it’s relevant to your audience.
- “Start now to get…” or “Your Journey to X Starts here” or “Start now” infers to your prospect that they are about to begin an exciting process — with the rest of the CTA telling the user how he or she will benefit.
- “Talk to an expert now” This is a great CTA to use for an online chat opportunity or when you want the prospect to call. Telling your prospect that you are a team of experts, will automatically make them feel safer in your hands.
- “Learn more about us at…” Prospects at the top of the sales funnel are collecting information, learning about brands and your industry without knowing exactly what they want yet. Using a CTA that invites people to learn more about your business can be extremely effective at building brand awareness. When prospects decide they’re ready to buy, they’ll have your business name at the top of their mind.
- “Please don’t hesitate to call us” Let your customers know you don’t mind talking to them over the phone. These types of CTA’s belong on every page of your site.
- “Order now and receive a free gift” If you can tempt prospects with a free gift, they’re more likely to buy the original product. The free gift on offer doesn’t have to be physical, it could be a discount off a future purchase or a downloadable template for example.
- “Get yours now” A personable CTA subtly telling the consumer that you want him or her to have something valuable — something other people might want.
- “Request your FREE quote today” Giving a free quote costs nothing but time to you, but once you have the prospect communicating with you it may just turn to a sale!
- “Click here to get free shipping” Use this popular CTA to overcome one of the chief barriers to buying products online – shipping costs!
- “Money-Back Guarantee offer here” When you offer a money-back guarantee, consumers feel more confident trying out your product or service.
- Activate X Today! Using a CTA like this one puts the prospect in the driver’s seat and motivates them to act. These call to actions work well if you’re offering a discount on products or a free demo of your service.
CTA Phrases to Create a Sense of Urgency
Creating a sense of urgency encourages customers to act now instead of holding off making the purchase. Here are some effective call to action phrases that you should consider using as the sooner you can get people to take action, the better!
- “Download here immediately.” Or “Download here right now” Strong adjectives promote urgency and encourage click-throughs.
- “Act quickly or you might lose it” Loss-aversion is a common psychological principle that is proven to work! Get the point across that if they don’t act now, they might lose something valuable.
- “Reserve your spot now” Same principle as above! Tell your prospects that if they don’t sign up and reserve their spots, they run the risk of leaving it too late.
- “Order now while there’s still time!” Urgency is often a key element in effective call-to-action phrases. Subtly pressure consumers into acting now rather than waiting until the opportunity passes them by.
- “In a hurry? Call…” Call-to-action phrases like this one let the consumer know that you’re willing to respond to their needs right away. A perfect CTA to use if you offer out-of-hours or emergency services.
- “It’s very important that you respond promptly” With this CTA you’re telling the prospect that if they don’t respond right away then they might lose out on something good.
- “Offer expires very soon” A powerful, snappy CTA that clearly states there’s an offer on the table, but if you don’t snap it up, you’ll miss out.
- “For a short time only” This CTA is popular during sales or clearances. It’s clearly stating that here is a chance to buy a limited-edition product, take advantage of a big discount, or get some other benefit. But only if you act now.
- “Limited availability” a great CTA as it creates urgency and infers your product is highly popular. A win-win for you as it serves as a form of social proof as well as an incentive to act quickly.
- “Expires at midnight tonight” It gives a definitely end point to the sale, so your prospects know they have to act quickly as the clock is ticking.
CTA Phrases to Imply Exclusivity
A very effective way to make people act is to imply exclusivity with whatever you’re offering. Try these phrases out to get people taking action and jumping at the chance to be a part of your product or service to not get left out of the group.
- “I invite you to…” Everyone needs to feel wanted and special —foster that sense of belonging by giving the impression that you’re personally inviting your prospect to do what you want.
- “Join X Other [Category] as Subscribers to My Email List” A great CTA for social proof. This CTA comes in many forms for example “Become one of the X people who subscribe to my emails.” Or “Join the club! Over X request my emails. You could, too!”
- “Request an invitation”
- “Members Only”
- “Only available to X”
- “Exclusive access”
This is an excerpt from my book ‘The Ultimate Beginner’s Guide to Social Media for Small Businesses: A Comprehensive, Jargon-Free Guide to Social Media Marketing For Those Who Just Don’t ‘Get it’!’ – Want a copy? Get it for FREE here! 📚
How to Make Sure You’re Successful on Social Media
Want to ensure your social media presence is ultimately going to be a successful addition to your marketing strategy? Take note of these 24 best practices!
Have Goals and Objectives
Like every other marketing and business initiative, you need to have a goal or objective that you what your social media presence to achieve. Whether you want to use it to improve brand awareness or as a new outlet to interact with customers, having clear objectives for your platforms helps to optimise their reach and impact. In addition, having well-defined objectives also makes it clearer for you in what to measure for your return on investment. It is also worth noting that return on investment with social media marketing cannot always be measured in money. Whilst it can drive sales, the real power of social media marketing is in building relationships with customers. Whatever your objectives, make them achievable and relevant for your business and remember as you progress these objectives may change.
Portray Yourself Consistently
It is important that before you engage in social media that you are clear on what kind of image you want to portray of yourself and make sure to keep it consistent across all platforms. This consistency equally applies not just to the ‘voice’ you portray but also to the creative aspects, that is the overall presentation including the colour scheme and typography. If your brand or company uses certain colours then be sure to apply these consistently across the presentation of all your social media platforms. This also extends to a company logo or picture, make sure they are up to date and reflective of the image you want to portray. Having a social media platform is a great way to show a ‘human’ side to your business that customers appreciate and prefer. From this, it is important to have an idea of what voice you want for your page that can be consistently applied across all your posts, especially if your company page is going to be managed by several different contributors. In general, avoid generic corporate speak and replace it with your own unique voice and customers will be more drawn to and engage with you. By setting consistent guidelines over the presentation and integration of your branding into your page it ensures that all these factors support and are in line with your overall branding and help reinforce your message and brand across all social media platforms.
Be Where Your Customers Are
It’s important to have a presence where your customers are looking to interact with you. To find out where you should be there are two easy ways; research the demographics of your intended social media platforms and also ask your customers yourself. When you start researching what platforms you think are best for your business, be sure that their main audience are the ones you want to target. The other option is for you to ask your existing customers where they are active online; this will then help guide your platform choices.
Get In The Habit Of Checking The News
If you’re not already doing this at least once a day, you need to start. Get in the habit of checking both industry news and the news in the world. You don’t need to read an entire newspaper and several journals, just look to bookmark a few key sites and blogs and at the very least, skim the headlines. Social media covers all aspects of people’s lives and the more you understand about them in a wider context, the more you can understand where your brand will fit into your followers’ newsfeed. The added benefit of scanning the news daily means it will also help you to find real time opportunities that you can utilise for your social media content.
Learn To Manage Your Time Effectively
On average, 64% of marketers spend at least 6 hours a week on social media. As more social media platforms, tools and features are added into your marketing mix regularly, it can become overwhelming to keep on top of your timing and not to have your social media management impact your other duties. Timekeeping is one of the most vital skills for an efficient social media marketer, so make sure you’re getting everything done by creating checklists for regular tasks and using social media tools that help you work smarter.
Focus on Building a Community Rather Than a Number of Followers
The number of people following you can only take you so far. Having 10,000+ followers is noteworthy, but at the end of the day it doesn’t matter how many followers you have if they’re not interacting and paying attention to your content. So what can be done to build a community and increase engagement with your current and potential followers? Simple, always insert some personality, humor, and life into your brand and always converse directly with your followers: which is as simple as having a conversation with them, retweet them, like and comment on their posts, and directly ask them to interact with your content.
Create a Powerful Presence Across all Social Channels
If you want your audience to stay engaged, you need to be engaging. One of the great ways to do this by creating powerful social campaigns that run consistent across all your social platforms. How do you do this? Start by…
- Telling a powerful story: Think of ways you can use your social channels to tell powerful, motivational and therefore compelling stories to your viewers. For example, you can share a story rooted in charity work that you do or support. Alternatively, you could share stories from your happiest clients on your blog and then create a social campaign with a unique slogan and hashtag to promote and create a movement around their stories. Team this strategy with…
- Brand your movement with a unique name and hashtags: Branding your movement will make it memorable and stick out in the mind of your followers. Take time to brainstorm actionable ideas that will get followers involved, whether that is done by posting photos and using your hashtag to group them, running a contest, or throwing events run by your business. For example, you could use the inspirational aspect of getting fit, or New Year’s resolutions, or whichever angle you believe your customers would gravitate towards. Test out a few hashtags, find the one that resonates best, and brand your movement by announcing it on your blog and social platforms.
Suck Up to Influencers
The goal is to get these influential people to like you and like your brand. Once you get in with the people that matter, your business will exponentially grow because you are exposed to their audience and authority. Make a thorough list of key industry influencers and actively take the following steps to socially connect with them:
- Favorite, like, comment, and re-share their content: Don’t favorite/like everything they post however, that is too obvious. Try to like and favourite a few times per week and comment when you genuinely have something educational and valuable to say.
- Tweet at them: Whether it’s asking their feedback on your content or asking industry related questions, this strategy works very well as they will be flattered that you thought of them and consider them to be a valuable resource/influencer.
- Use the same hashtags: This way when they’re reviewing their hashtag feeds they’ll see your content, and perhaps spark their interest.
Share Trending Content
Your platforms don’t exist to be solely self-promotional, this strategy will only make you be seen as boring and obnoxious. Rather, you need to strike a balance between sharing promotional content that markets your brand, interacting with your followers and influencers, and sharing other useful and entertaining content and news from other valuable resources. To help you become an industry influencer and produce content that is share-worthy, follow these four tips:
- Look for viral videos on YouTube of hilarious children, adorable animals, and inspirational moments and re-share with your own unique spin.
- Scan the news for the highest covered media stories and add a unique perspective keeping relevant to your brand.
- Follow and use relevant trending hashtags to add your voice to the larger conversations happening on social media. For example on Twitter you can see “Trends.”
- Use a popular tool like Buzzsumo to find content that resonates. It’s the easiest way to search related industry news sites and blogs, keywords, influencers, etc. to find the content with the highest number of social shares. Study the headlines that were shared and re-share those articles/headlines with your followers. This will continue the train of sharing, but also show your followers that your social posts are intriguing and follow-worthy.
Focus On Creating Content That People Care About and Inspires Conversation
On social media, you can’t depend on passive followers to convert themselves. You need to create as many opportunities to engage people as possible, and it all begins with your content. As people spend longer on social networks, their community expands and with every person followed, page liked, or friend added, they have a whole new set of posts and stories vying for their attention. Brands who have little respect for what people want in their newsfeed will find themselves further fenced off than before, therefore it is vital that the content you share is what your prospects and former customers generally respond well too. This may be a video about how your products work, interesting insights about the culture of your company or shocking stats about inefficiency in your industry for example. Whatever the case may be, build social content that gets your prospects talking to you.
Utilise Every Opportunity to Make Social Media Content
Every piece of content that you post is part of your story that you share with your audience. Everything from your ups and downs, your proudest achievements, to your charity work and the people behind your business are all prime areas in which you can create content that you can share with your viewers. So whenever you launch a new product, attend a conference or find a new way to use one of your products for example, look at the ways in which you can squeeze content out of it for use on your social media platforms.
Promote your Platforms
Anywhere your customers interact with your brand is an opportunity to encourage them to engage with you online. Once you begin, remember to promote all your social media platforms and that includes mentioning them on your e-newsletter, your email signature, business card, product packaging and anywhere else your customers will see it. Your customers and fans need to be told where they can connect with you through social media, so make it clear where you are.
Make Providing Value a Top Priority
Social media is centred on having conversations and engaging with people. That being said, unless the aim of your platforms is to be akin to a personal journal, the content you post should not be simply an update of what you are thinking or doing no with no real substance or value in what you are writing. To avoid to making this mistake every post and tweet should have a clearly defined topic as well as delivering something valuable to the reader, whether that be entertainment or information. You must also write your content with your target audience in mind so rather than trying to appeal to a generic wider audience, write content that contains specialised information and analysis that those interested in your services or in your sector would read. By openly giving out valued advice and information you will become an online repository of specialist knowledge and this will attract the attention of your target audience. Central to being effective is also realising that conversation is a two-way process so you also need to listen to what people are saying to you and about you and respond to them accordingly.
Be Active and Consistent
In order to get the most out of using social media as a marketing tool, you need to post content often. It is therefore vital that in the very beginning you figure out a comfortable writing routine that works with your editorial calendar, be it posting daily or several times a week, and stick to it in order to maintain consistency and maximise your impact. Although it takes some experimentation to find the best publishing schedule for you, there are two things that should always be considered and will dictate your posting schedule; your business goals and what your audience wants.
The fact that customer service through social media is quickly becoming an expectation of consumers means you’re publicly open to both criticism and praise online. From this, it is vital that you watch for any negative things that are being said about you and respond quickly and accordingly. Rather than simply deleting any negative comments you receive, as even the most universally loved businesses receive negative comments, view them as an opportunity to win over a customer offering help, guidance or even acknowledging where something went wrong. By dealing with negativity in an open and authentic way you can help build rapport and trust with your customers. Also remember that often you will get praise online in the form of a great review or comment, do not forget to say thank you.
Coordinate Your Social Channels
Your success will be limited If you treat each social media platform as a stand-alone effort. Your networks should work together to help you achieve your goals, with your website acting as your brand’s home base. Coordinate and cross-promote your social media efforts to reach new audiences, boost your following and to push people to your website where they can buy your product or service.
Boost Results With Social Advertising
If you want to accelerate your social media performance, it’s worth your time to explore paid advertising options. Facebook offers a number of advertising options to help boost sales, brand exposure, audience engagement and website traffic. Twitter has two advertising solutions: promoted content that helps you cut through the noise and serve your content to tailored audiences and promoted accounts which help increase the size of your Twitter following. Likewise LinkedIn also offers opportunities to reach specific audiences by advertising or by the use of the sponsored updates feature to increase your brand’s visibility. Even if your budget is limited, don’t dismiss social advertising. Used strategically it can produce great results to boost your visibility and success on social media.
Find Leads Using Social Media Monitoring Tools
Tracking and monitoring conversations happening around your brand and products is a time consuming but vital task that can be made manageable using social media monitoring tools. Ensure you actively make the effort to monitor mentions of your name, your business name, your products and any other keywords related to your business to find conversations already happening in your industry. Jump into those conversations and provide answers, guidance or helpful information where needed. Being useful is one way to start to build relationships with your target market.
Participate in Other People’s Communities (OPC’s)
Actively join and engage the discussions in the communities populated by people likely to use your services and share some of your expertise when it’s relevant. Make it your aim to become and trusted member of these communities. You never want to be promotional in social groups, but if you’re consistently helpful and engaged, prospects will likely be interested and click through to your profile where they’ll find your posts and marketing collateral.
Send Regular Emails with Valuable Content, Deals and Promotions
As your social media connections move into your email list, you can and should continue to provide valuable information, notify them of upcoming deals and promotions and provide general interesting business news and updates. At this point in the funnel you have likely already become a trusted source of information, meaning your subscribers are warmed up to buying from you. Social media is all about building connections with your target market, and making yourself the first name that comes to mind when they’re ready to buy. Take this opportunity to craft perfect email campaigns, using segmentation whenever possible to be sure your content and offers are targeted to specific groups of subscribers and by the strategic use of strong calls to action in your emails to make sure your subscribers know what you want them to do, and what to expect when they click on your offer/content. By continuing to cultivate them with engaging, valuable and entertaining information in your emails, you will help to build connections that will result in long-term, profitable relationships.
Create Customer Advocacy Opportunities
Customer advocacy is where your marketing ROI can take off. You’ll be putting in less effort to reach your marketing goals because your customers will effectively sell for you.
Continue to engage qualified leads and customers
There’s no reason why people should stop learning from you after they become customers. If they’re on an email list or subscribed to your blog, actively send out informational reminders for them to connect with your company on social networks.
Offer occasional incentives for customers to review your services or share certain posts
Depending on your business and market, offering vouchers or bargains such as free consultations can work well. The benefits for you are twofold: You’ll increase brand exposure and subtly help customers become your advocates.
Engage customers specifically about your products and services
If your company offers a complex product, it might be a good idea to create a forum on your website or an entirely hub that’s purely for continued customer support, just for you and your customers to interact around your products. Externally, LinkedIn showcase pages and Facebook groups might be possible hubs for product-based conversations that build increased trust for your brand and position your company as worth advocating for.
- Provide substantial advocacy opportunities for repeat customers
Over time, you might form mutually beneficial partnerships with repeat customers. Consider rewarding these relationships with more substantial opportunities such as inviting them to networking events.
Monitor Social for Un-Tagged Brand Mentions
Not every person who mentions your brand or products on social media will tag you in the post. In fact, many social posters may assume that you’ll never even see the posts they create mentioning you. Actively scan your social media networks for these types of mentions and join the conversation by provide pleasantly surprising customer engagement. You should look to actively monitor;
Your Own Brand Terms—make sure to monitor for all variations of your company’s name, including nicknames and common misspellings.
Your Own Product Terms—A less frequently used strategy involves monitoring social for some of your popular products, as well as the common nicknames and misspellings.
Create an Internal FAQ Document
Consult with everyone who manages your social pages and build a document that houses all of these questions and some solid answers. Whilst you should never simply copy-paste those responses over to your customers, you can use this document to quickly guide your response.
Do What Is Right for You
As you become a regular participant on social media platforms, you will find unique ways in which they can be used to the best advantage for your business. Nobody knows your customers and what they expect from you better than you yourself so delivering the content they want and engaging with them is the most important thing and will dictate your decisions surrounding your social media marketing efforts. As with any other marketing efforts, you will learn in time what works and what don’t, the important thing is to learn by doing.
This is an excerpt from my eBook “The Ultimate Beginner’s Guide to Social Media for Small Businesses” Want to grab your FREE Copy? Click Here! 📚
What is Social Media and Why is it Important?
Social media is the means by which people interact with others in virtual communities and networks allowing them to create, share and exchange information and ideas. With the rapid popularity growth of these new technologies, social media has had a profound impact on the way people discover, read and share news, information and content. Social media encompasses all forms of ‘user generated’ content, from communication platforms such as Facebook and Twitter to multimedia services such as YouTube and virtual gaming platforms like World of Warcraft. It has become extremely popular as it allows people to connect and form relationships in the online world for personal and business use.
How is Social Media Being Used by Businesses?
Social media puts you out there and brings your solutions to your prospects’ doors. As such, the benefits of creating a social presence on the web have been felt by every type of business and industry. Whether you have a restaurant, retail outlet or provide professional services, social media enables you to build your online reputation, increase credibility and help generate business and drive sales. By taking advantage of social media, you can make your business gain more exposure, be more personable and generate and maintain long term connections as well as benefit from rich insights into your customers and industry. All of which can greatly benefit your business in the future.
Why Should You Join In?
With the surge in popularity in having a presence on social media, the chances are that your customers and competitors are already involved. On the web your customers will be talking, forming their opinions and its’s where they’re making their own recommendations to their friends and connections. Likewise your competitors may be already channelling in on those customers and reaping the rewards from engaging with, joining and listening to those conversations. People all around the world may be already talking about your business, so it’s important that you get involved in the conversation and present yourself how you want to be presented on the web. Still not convinced? Here are 5 more reasons why you need social media for your business;
Social Media is Everywhere and Very Popular
Social media has become a central part of most people’s lives, whether they are at home or on the go, people are actively engaging online. These users aren’t just sharing updates from their own lives; they are searching for businesses, products, and services, and connecting with brands through their social channels. People of all ages and genders are actively using social media so no matter how old or young, or what gender your target audience may be, chances are most of them are already logging on and waiting for you to get started.
Social Media Sites are Free
Getting started on most social media platforms is completely free. Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, YouTube, WordPress and LinkedIn all offer free accounts to users and businesses and in most cases signing up won’t require anything more than an email address. There are features within some platforms that you need to pay for such as a Facebook Ad or a profile upgrade in LinkedIn, but for the purposes of getting started there’s no upfront cost for most of the social networks.
Join an Existing Conversation
Social media provides you with an opportunity to listen to the conversations about your business and industry being openly discussed online. Not only does joining this conversation mean you can hear what is being said about you, it also means you can easily develop a richer understanding of your customers and benefit from insights into your target audiences. Moreover, it can also be used to create dedicated communities where you can host discussions about the products and services you offer or use your followers as an outlet for helping build new ones.
Social Media is Great for Customer Service
Customer service through social media is quickly becoming an expectation of consumers. Businesses have quickly come to realise that it offers a unique opportunity to showcase your customer service skills, promote more intimate business relationships with your customers and enables you to cater to your customer’s needs instantly. In a world where everything is fast-paced, a quick response that showcases how much you care about providing a memorable experience can create a lifelong customer. Social media allows you to continually strengthen relationships with these customers through social engagement and because this engagement is publicly visible to others, it can introduce your business to a whole new audience and enable you to reach your next customer.
It Helps People Learn More About Your Business
Social media sites are becoming the go-to place for consumers who want to learn more about a business. People are online actively searching for information about anything from product reviews to informative articles and general entertainment so it is up to you to utilise this and use your social media presence to provide valuable, informative and entertaining news and updates to existing and potential audiences. If customers are already searching for you on Facebook or Twitter and not finding your business, you are missing opportunities to win new customers and inform and engage your existing ones so it is vital that you join in with social media and have your brand heard and seen online.