Many local business owners do not invest much effort, if any, in their social media presence and to be perfectly honest, it’s quite understandable. It can be really very time consuming! Business owners are already very busy running their businesses on a day to day basis and finding the time to devote to developing social media properties such as Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin etc. can prove to be challenging and even overwhelming.

The question is this, is there a downside to ignoring social media completely when it comes to business? Well the answer to that question, simply put, is… an emphatic YES. There certainly are disadvantages. If businesses competing with yours are doing it, you will be playing catch-up with them in the race to attract new business.

Competitors who are using social media have channels of communications to connect with their prospects, customers and clients on an ongoing basis. Whether we like it or not, social media for business is here to stay and most likely will even grow in importance in 2016 and beyond.

Devoting some time to getting social media exposure allows businesses the chance to get up close and personal with their customers. In turn, customers who share a positive experience they have had with a business pave the way for getting even more business when friends and connections read their shared positive reviews and comments. This is especially good for brick and mortar businesses such as restaurants, local coffee shops or hair salons. Word of mouth through social media is very very powerful indeed. If a business is providing a great product or service, the word can spread quite fast.

Many social media entities such as Facebook have moved to a pay for advertising model. If you want to get more exposure you just have to pay for it. The reality is that when you post to Facebook only just around 5% and as low as 2% of fans actually get to see that post. It stands to reason that since Facebook was floated on the stock exchange in 2012, they are in the business of making profits. Just like Google are too through their Adwords advertising platform!

Is it worth paying the price for paid advertisements? As long as you know how to measure your ROI (return on investment) against your ad spend is the short answer to that question. ROI aside, being active and getting more exposure on social media platforms, paid or otherwise, brings other benefits too including brand recognition, trustworthiness, more sales and greater profits.

Well, there you have it. Is social media worth the trouble and time investment it takes? We say, very much so! If you are not doing it, start doing it.

 

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