Understanding the impact social media has on a small business is becoming more important as more potential consumers join and spend a large amount of time using social networks. A recent Pew Internet social media research discovered that 66% of adults online use social networking sites. However, as the infographic below illustrates, potential customers’ participation in social media is the number three reason small businesses use social media. What else drives small business owners to create a profile on social networking sites? How do their ideas about social media differ from their consumers? And how can investing in the knowledge of an expert potentially help the bottom line? Check out the infographic from Intuitbelow to find out.
How does this affect small business’ customer acquisition and retention efforts? Here are a few key takeaways to keep in mind:
1. Businesses engaging with customers on Facebook build loyalty and drive word of mouth. With approximately 9 million small businesses on Facebook, it is becoming more important for small business owners to develop a social strategy that differentiates them from their competitors online. Connecting with fans who are current customers not only builds loyalty, but also increases the chance that they will recommend the business to their friends. And as 51% of potential consumers who fan a business page become purchasers, friend recommendations can be a great boost for business.
2. Special deals and offers are the top reasons consumers follow a brand on Facebook. About 37% of consumers stated that special offers and discounts were the main reason they followed a business on Facebook. Offering incentives is a great way to reward followers, creating an engaged community and developing a dynamic Web presence.
3. Social Media Experts can help take the burden off building and managing social media pages. From a small business owner’s perspective, the low cost and small amount of work to run a social media page are the top reasons to create a social media presence. However, as the research shows, one of the main reasons small business owners don’t comment or respond to fans is because they don’t have the time. Not only can hiring a social media expert help you grow and maintain a social presence, provide strategic thinking, manage online reputations, and potentially increase sales, it also allows small business owners to do what they are experts in – their business.
How has social media changed the way you connect with your consumers? Let us know in the comments!