How social media gives businesses the competitive edge

Social media has carved an enormous slice for itself in the everyday lives of people. It’s so pervasive that by 2021, more than 3 billion people are expected to be on it (1). As people grow accustomed to a ‘social media’ lifestyle, it would be myopic of businesses, B2B or B2C, to ignore the contribution of social media in driving growth. Perhaps a closer look at the lesser-known benefits of social media marketing will underscore its importance.

1. Nurture authority

Pre-social media era, businesses were limited to the use of press or TV to showcase themselves. Being expensive media platforms, the costs tend to outweigh the benefits, especially for smaller businesses. With limited resources, it’s almost impossible to nurture authority. Social media, on the other hand, is not only inexpensive, it’s also versatile, with businesses only limited by their imagination and creativity.

2. Your authenticity shines through

Why is the versatility of social media important for businesses? Just like not everyone is comfortable in front of the camera or on radio, not every business will come across as ‘good’ on print or TV ads. As a result, the authenticity of your brand or business may be negatively impacted despite your good intentions. Perhaps your brand or business’ authenticity comes across stronger by sharing a well-researched whitepaper or a funky animated infographic. Whichever it may, social media is a versatile vehicle for delivering ‘the-true-you’ of the brand direct to your intended audience.

3. Trigger engagement

Social media is a 2-way street. Consumers can, and will, respond to a business’ posts and online ads. In fact, some studies have shown people trust reviews posted by others more than they do ads (2). To this end, social media has led to the growth of conversational marketing. The ability to interact directly with prospects and customers empowers brands and businesses to be more precise in their marketing activities as well as sharpening the capabilities of their products and services.

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