Small Businesses – Use Social Media to build your local business brand
Small businesses are beginning to recognize the importance of using social media connections to help them build a loyal local following. Social media can also help the small business owner to expand their territories, keep their existing customers updated with new product offerings,and establish credibility for new customers.
As a small business owner, it is important that you know that your new and existing customers are now looking online, for a local business who can provide them with products and services when the need arises.
As a local media advertising consultant, it is my job to watch trends. Several years ago, I began to study the trend of small businesses migrating from the trusted and true methods of advertising such as yellow pages and newspaper to the internet.
My experience as a yellow pages consultant for over 21 years helped me to quickly realize that small businesses owners were growing less and less satisfied with the results that traditional print media brought in terms of return on investment.
In order to know what products were best suited for me to recommend to my clients, I needed to know where the advertising dollars were now being spent.
Case study after case study helped me to quickly realize that the number one reason that my small businesses were not realizing the same profits and return on investment from their traditional print advertising was clear:
Their customers were not looking for their services in traditional print media, they were looking for the products and services that they needed, online.
Small businesses need websites, social media and a following
If you are a small business owner, and you do not have a website, the time is now. The tide has shifted.
The internet is being used to either do research on the products and services that your customers need and want, as well as for purchases.
In order to use your advertising dollars more effectively, you will need to reach your new customers and engage your current customers where they are looking for you; online and in social media.
Social media for small business? Why?
It is not enough for people to look up your phone number online, they want to know what others who have done business think of the quality of customer service that you provide.
They want to know – where you timely, friendly, are your prices fair?
If you are in the service business, or a business that specializes in large tickets items, building the “know-like-trust” factor for customers who DON’T know you is key – social media is a fantastic and profitable way for you to connect, offer your services,and even allow your satisfied customers to give you positive reviews and testimonials, further building your brand, and consumer trust.
Over 70% of consumers search for local businesses to purchase products and services from, online.
The key to building and keeping your brand strong, is making sure that they find you.
If you are not engaging with your local market, chances are, your competitor is. Don’t miss out on these potential customers or the dollars they want to spend – Get online, and get SOCIAL.
Guest Blogger Alecia Barnes is a small business social media and SEO consultant, who specializes in helping local businesses build quality branding online and through social media. In addition to working as a consultant with GlobalWebFX.com, she is the author of www.a-body-by-vi.com, a site which focuses on her journey from heavy to healthy, and her weight loss of over 140 pounds. Visit Me On Google+