-Engaging in Social Media Platforms
In the midst of the Coronavirus pandemic there has been a dramatic shift in the way businesses operate. Small to medium-sized businesses in particular have encountered numerous challenges that have been compounded by the rapid digital transformation taking place largely in response to these unprecedented times.
Many employers and business owners have been tasked with the responsibility of converting their operations—most of which typically relied on in-person interactions—into an entirely virtual platform. One of the most effective methods of managing this transition has been via social media platforms.
Understanding & Leveraging Social Media Platforms
In order to successfully utilize social media platforms for small businesses, it is necessary to comprehend how these platforms operate and the advantages with which they can provide.
First and foremost, social media platforms provide a variety of outlets through which businesses can reach out to both potential and current customers. From Facebook Ads, to sponsored posts on Instagram, to Twitter campaigns, each of these platforms offer a range of options to promote and publicize one’s business.
Moreover, social media platforms can act as effective customer service resources. Direct messages on these platforms provide efficient means through which customer complaints and inquiries can be addressed swiftly and in a more approachable and personal manner. Additionally, businesses can use these platforms to post updates and important messages regarding current and future operations, especially during such uncertain times.
The Benefits of Engaging with Social Media Platforms for Small Businesses
Engaging with social media platforms provides various benefits for businesses in terms of marketing, operations, and customer service.
Firstly, utilizing social media platforms to advertise one’s business is a cost effective means of ensuring maximum outreach to potential customers. For small businesses struggling to cope with the financial constraints caused by the pandemic, investing in a solid social media presence is a reliable solution to expand one’s customer base without breaking the bank.
In terms of operations, many businesses have had to be scaled back or completely closed. Having a good social media strategy enables businesses to continue to engage with customers, both answering questions and adapting to feedback in order to keep customer support and satisfaction high.
Finally, customer servicehas been at the core of social media’s success. According to a study conducted by The Institute of Customer Service, seven out of 10 people “would be more likely to use a business if it can be shown to respond quickly to queries over social media channels.” Furthermore, responding to customer inquiries on social media platforms within an hour can increase customer satisfaction by up to 25%.
Making The Most of Social Media Platforms for Small Businesses
Although the benefits of engaging with social media platforms are immense, it is also necessary to make sure to engage in them in an effective manner. Here are a few ways to maximize the usefulness of these tools for small businesses.
Firstly, make sure to analyze your target demographic and tailor your posts accordingly. There is a vast array of social media platforms available—each of which appeals to different users. Businesses should be sure to research which ones are used the most by their target audience in order to tailor their posts heaving been armed with targeting the best demographic.
Secondly, invest in the right technologies. Automation can prove to be an invaluable asset when it comes to managing one’s online presence. Investing in the right automation tools can make a considerable difference when it comes to responding to customer inquiries in a timely manner.
Thirdly, appointing social media personnel or influencers is an effective method of ensuring maximum customer engagement and outreach. Whenever possible, small businesses should seek out guest posts on relevant blogs, influencer reviews, and customer interviews—all of which can contribute to the success of one’s online presence.
Despite the many challenges posed by the pandemic, businesses have still managed to make the necessary adjustments to thrive during such turbulent times. By leveraging social media platforms, businesses can further extend their reach to broader audiences in a cost effective and customer focussed manner.
By incorporating effective strategies and optimizing social media platforms, businesses are, more than ever before, able to continue to engage and serve their customer base on a daily basis—ultimately providing them with the best possible customer service and experience.