Many people write about using social networking in business, and I recently read a blog that highlighted its usefulness, which prompted the question; is social networking really that important when it comes to helping your business to grow? In short yes.
Firstly, social networking allows you as a company to really form a relationship with your customers or clients on a personal level. It will seem as if they are communicating with a real person rather than a robot, for instance they can post questions directly to your page, and more often than not, they will be able to get the response that they require without having to go through the rigmarole of various telephone menus before they speak to a human being. In a society where people want the answers to their questions immediately, this can be extremely beneficial when trying to maintain good relationships, provided that you give them the answer they are looking for.
Secondly, it can be a great source of information for your customers, or for people wanting to find out what is happening within your company. Whether your company is big or small, there will always be a rumour on the grape-vine. If you have the means to make announcements via your own social networking feed, you can be certain that the knowledge people have about your company is correct, and it may also make people believe that they are receiving exclusive news first.
These sites have to be used correctly though; there is no point in employing these tools if you are not going to use them properly. Content has to be fresh and engaging, if you are encouraging more people to talk about your company you’re doing something right, don’t forget, the best recommendations are spread word-of-mouth. If your friends like something, it is likely that you will like it too; similarly, if they share a post, it is likely it will be of interest to you. Posting content that goes viral is invaluable to success, this is what you want to be striving for, be aware that this is extremely difficult so don’t be disheartened if you don’t achieve this immediately.
It is important that your company is accessible and approachable, social networking can help you achieve this. If you are posting things that people can understand and relate to then it is more likely that they will want to use your service, if you’re page is boring and full of information that people can’t or don’t want to relate to, then you will fail. Try to be light-hearted and funny, people are drawn to people and things that make them laugh and you’ll be seen in a more positive way.
It seems as if social networking will be around for a long time yet, and is already proving to be a major tool for communication. The sooner that your company jumps on the band wagon the better, but use it correctly or it could be your downfall.