Social media fact or fiction?

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If you’re involved with managing your company’s online presence, you’ve probably heard a lot about the wonders of social media and about the miraculous things it can do for your business. The list of benefits is a long one - boosting visitor numbers, enriching your market research, engaging your target audience and giving you a platform to successfully market your products and services to name but a few. Social media is credited with some very impressive abilities.

So can social media’s extensive list of benefits actually be real? And what is the fact and the fiction behind this global online phenomena?

Social media networks

Social media has taken the world by storm. Around 2.2bn people now have some sort of social media profile, with Facebook boasting a whopping 1.59bn users worldwide. In the UK alone, 31 million people have a Facebook profile, meaning that around 60% of the population is active on social media.

Not only do users around the world sign up for social media profiles, they also actively participate in networks and check their news feeds on a regular basis. This provides businesses who take advantage of social media with a ready made audience of engaged and connected individuals.

Market research

On social media networks, users voluntarily offer up information about themselves and their families. This often includes likes and dislike, geographical information, opinions, ages and interests. This is invaluable when it comes to market research, especially if you can engage with your social network to garner information on specific subjects, products and services.

Use hashtags (#) to find relevant groups and organisations in your target audience. You can then use the less formal platform of your social media network to collect ideas, feedback and criticisms that will help you fine tune your products, services and marketing campaigns.

Promotions

  • In order to ensure yours is the company that people turn to when they’re in the market for the products or services you offer, you need to make sure you’re always at the forefront of your customers’ minds. Social media is a great way to do this as the average user spends around one hour 28 minutes checking their news feed and exploring their network every day.
  • Running regular promotions, competitions and special offers on social media can really help to boost your company profile. You can also use your network to share blog content and your latest news, ensuring your customers stay up to date with all your innovations.
  • Though signing up for a social media profile won’t magically transform your company into an overnight success, it will give you a fantastic platform on which to engage with your customers, promote your products and boost brand awareness. If you’re yet to embrace the world of social media, now’s the time to make a profile, get active and see what networking can do for you.

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