Many small business owners and entrepreneurs understand the importance of setting goals. It is unlikely that you can sit back and wait for good things to happen to your business. You have to decide what you want and then make it happen.
If you are limiting your use of social media to advertising, you may be missing out on some of the greatest ways in which social media can help you. Certainly, advertising on Facebook or Pinterest may be vital to your marketing strategy. But social media is about more than just advertising. Here are a few business goals that social media can help you meet this year:
1. Build personal relationships with customers
Social media allows you to build personal relationships with customers. It's like the old days of the door-to-door salesman, except less intrusive for the customer and less work for the salesperson. Social media allows us to get to know our customers, find out what they like and dislike and communicate with them as individuals. At the same time, because we are running social media on our computers, phones or tablets, there is a degree of privacy and ease involved that provides some comfort to the customer. They can find out about your product, ask for help or provide their comments without having to let a salesperson into their living room or travel to a store or business.
2. Build brand loyalty
Once you have a personal dialogue set up with your customers, you can use that to help build brand loyalty. Just remember that loyalty is a two-way street. The brands that have a loyal following are the ones that are loyal to their customers. Thank customers who take the time to post positive comments about your product or service. Send them a coupon or offer a discount if appropriate. When a customer posts a negative comment about your product or service, react quickly to repair the relationship. Often a customer will be quick to forgive you and your business if you were helpful when something went wrong.
3. Make your customer's life easier
Use social media to help run your business, rather than simply to advertise your business. For example, if you ran the local children's soccer league you could post game times and results on Facebook, making them easy for parents to share with friends and relatives. Or you could use a blog to provide your customers with useful product-related information.
These are just a few of the many ways in which social media can help you reach your business goals. Remember to think beyond advertising when using your social media tools to get the most return on your investment.