2015 will be the another great year of owning social media for strategic marketers. The most significant reason for this is that consumers are always connected digitally and expect brands to do the same. According to the 2015 State of Marketing Report published by Salesforce last week, the top three areas of increased spending for marketers in 2015 are social media advertising, social media marketing, and social media engagement. But why is social data so critical for marketers? Here are five straightforward reasons:
1. Create brand awareness
Engaging on social media is a great way to increase brand awareness and brand recognition. Social media gives companies great exposure and visibility at little to no cost. It is the perfect tool to reach millions of consumers in just a second, with minimal efforts. By increasing brand awareness through social media, companies can increase customer loyalty and accentuate positive aspects of their brand. One way to increase positive sentiment and create customer engagement on social media is by producing interesting content that is consistent with the brand image.
2. Improve customer service
Social media encourages two-way communication and allows customers to share their questions, comments, and complaints instantly. Engaging on social media can improve a company’s relationship with their customers and their overall experience with the brand. Many consumers expect real-time customer service from companies. For these reasons, social media offers a great opportunity to improve customer service and provide real-time communication and gratification to customers. Social media monitoring tools automate the process of searching and listening to what consumers are saying.
3. Manage reputation
Social media monitoring also helps uncover how consumers really feel about a brand. It enables companies to measure attitudes, conversation and behavior toward their brand and to better understand its strengths and weaknesses. Social media sites are the go-to places for many consumers that want to share their thoughts on particular topics. Responding to negative comments can assure customers that their voice is important and can help repair a brand’s image. By actively listening and reaching out to consumers, social media can play an important role in reputation management.
4. Get to know your customers
People share a lot of valuable information on social media every single day. Social media allows companies to learn the demographics and psychographics of their customers. Monitoring social media is an essential step in the ongoing process of understanding what customers value, need, and like. It also gives marketers the opportunity to create better and richer campaigns that will resonate with their target audience. The insights that can be obtained with social media monitoring can drive critical marketing decisions.
5. Generate more leads
Engaging on social can translate into bigger sales. Social media sites can bring high volume of traffic into a company’s website and convert leads into prospects. According to HubSpot’s Inbound Marketing Annual Report, 84% of inbound marketers cite organic sources like social media as rising in importance for lead generation. Utilizing multiple channels, creating interesting content, and developing a strategy are some of the ways to generate more leads with social media.
For more information on the power of social data today, download our e-book on measuring brand equity.