For those who haven’t got the memo, it’s no secret that social media has become quite popular over the last couple of years. Actually, “quite popular” is a biiiit of an understatement. A recent study shows that 97% of online adults aged 16-64 have visited or used a social network within the last month. Almost all of the world’s active Internet users are spending their online surfing time on social media! In this post, I am going to share three (of many) benefits that social media has for startups and why it is more important than ever to be a good “social media citizen.”
Create Brand Awareness
The most important thing that social media can do for your startup is make people aware that you exist. Whether this is done organically or through paid social advertising, social media (along with quality earned media) is one of the most effective ways of getting your name out there. While paid social advertising is the quickest way to grow your social media audience and create brand awareness, there are also things that can, and should, be done to reach this goal organically. Posting content relating to your industry, following and engaging with relevant influencers and jumping in on related conversations will help create brand recognition and increase your audience reach.
Develop Thought Leadership
Another advantage of being active on social media is establishing your brand as a thought leader within its industry. One of the best ways to do this is through an active blog on your company’s website, which can then be posted as original content to your social media channels. When writing your blog, there are a couple of important things to remember. You must identify your target audience and tailor the content so that they will find it interesting. Also, it is important that you are offering a unique perspective on the topic being presented. Finally, try to find opportunities to quote and link to other thought leaders in the industry. By associating yourself with an established thought leader in your field, it will give your company blog a bit more credibility as well as an opportunity to form a relationship with this person on social media.
Support Lead Generation
After creating brand awareness and establishing your startup as a thought leader, social media can play a role in supporting lead generation. While your startup may have other means of bringing in leads, using social media marketing for lead generation has been proven to be quite cost effective, with statistics showing that social media marketing can reduce lead generation costs for 45% of businesses. Running a contest, hosting an online event or promoting gated content are all great ways to use social media to aid your startup’s lead generation.
These are just three of the many advantages social media has for your business. So what are you still doing here? Go get posting and promoting!