Not too long ago, businesses had to spend so much to reach their target audience. Even at then the focus was to directly advertise to their potential customers and hope for a sale. In those times it was the biggest spender that won: whoever could get their advertisement seen by the most eyes. But in our present age and time, due to the ever lowering barriers to entry and the equalizing effect of the Internet, so many business have sprung up in all kinds of markets. Now, the market leaders aren’t those with the fattest advertising budgets but those that are most trusted.

And that’s the fundamental purpose of Social Media to any business, it is to build a relationship with the people in your target market. Not To Grow Your Mailing List, Not Drive Traffic and definitely Not To Sell Stuffs. These pros are merely the fruits of your relationship with your customers.

Social Media offers the chance to build a solid relationship with your present customers and reach out and get to know your potential customers in such a cost effective way, at least it a more effective than spending ₦2.4 million per month on a billboard at V.I.

Bridge Billboard Panel at Victoria Island

So I still sit wondering why so many small businesses are still reluctant to jump on this amazing opportunity. Here are some the major benefits of social media to any and all businesses (Yes, even Iya Fatima Buka!):

5 Benefits of Social Media to your business

1. Build an intimate relationship with your customers

The life blood of every business is it’s customers. Your business rises and falls on your customers. Platforms like Facebook and Instagram, give you direct access into the psyche of your customers. The better you know your customers and what their needs are then you can better serve them by creating a product that directly tackle those needs. The real beauty of social media is that you get to connect with each customer on a much more personal level.

Saying Hello doesn’t have an ROI. It’s about building relationships.Gary Vaynerchuk

Customers only buy stuffs from people they trust. Especially in this part of the world, where we already know what 419 means before we can spell our names. So build a relationship.

2. Relative control over your brand image

Every business have particular values that they would like their customers to identify them with. Like while Closeup is all about “fresh breath”, Oral B is all about being clinical proven and medically tested, that’s why Oral B can afford to sell for a much more higher cost, their taking the approach of it being more than just toothpaste but a “toothdrug” as well.

Closeup- Toothpaste
Oral B- Toothdrug

Social media helps you amplify those messages and share your story to a larger audience. Cause the best form of marketing is story-telling. It’s basically like gisting with a friend telling them, “Hey, this is what am really good at and what I really take seriously.”

But the truth is that it’s all relative cause you can’t totally control the way people see you cause we all have different opinions and experiences.

3. Show that you are human

I’d rather buy from a friend than a faceless entity. That’s the plain truth. That is why companies sign ambassadors, these ambassadors are usually trusted by the society or authorities in the target market. But also rather than spending tons of cash on ambassadors, just prove that you are actually human by frequently posting employee group photos or work break videos of your team having a little fun. That’s even more credibility than ambassadors. A good example is when Konga share their team engaging in the mannequin challenge. When I watched the video I totally fell in love with Konga.

4. Respond to criticism and show you care

This is going to sound weird but be excited whenever a customer complains openly about your page on social media. For one it’s better than them expressing their griefs to their family and friends which would definitely create deep negative stronghold in their mind about how bad your business is.

But when they speak up, expressing their discontent. In that position you can openly show the world how much your company cares.

Usually when this sort of things happen it would be wise to over satisfy your customer, so he not only becomes a happy customer but also a brand evangelist; now he has a story to tell his friends about how awesome your business is.

Imagine you ordered a set of headphones online but it’s taking like 3 weeks to deliver, so you get angry and tweet at the company. They reply to your tweet apologizing and reassuring that they would deliver. So the next day, they not only send your headphones but a box of donuts and a hand written apology note on it. I don’t know about you but had probably forgive them in an instant. Then when I share the donuts with my friends and their like where did you get it from, you tell them the story. Can you see now the chain reaction that occurs.

And remember not to be too robotic in your response to your customers. It sucks.

5. Increase brand awareness much faster

Social Media is such an awesome way to reach out to many more people at the same time. It gives your business such amazing brand visibility opportunities. Nowadays the average number of followers for a business account is about 400 followers, that might seem small on the surface but think about it this way, imagine delivering a speech to 400 people. And that’s the problem with many businesses already using social media, they fail to see their followers has actually living breathing people rather than just figures and metrics.

Great brands don’t have followers, they have evangelists.Oluwaseun Sunmola

Now that you know just how awesome social media could be to your brand why not get on board. This is actually my first post on the blog, but I’d be talking a lot more about how you can use social media to grow you business.

If there is anything you think I missed in the post or anything you’d like to add, drop a comment below.

But if you’d really need help, my team and I could help your business maximize your sales and exposure using social media platforms, let’s talk on whatsapp, +2349064916346

Thank you for taking out time to read this.