While social media has been in existence for over 15 years, its adoption for business is relatively low especially in developing countries like Kenya. The reasons for the slow uptake are as varied as the number of companies in operation. A closer look at the underlying factors points to an inadequate understanding of how social media marketing works. For many, the traditional ways of marketing are largely working for them. To this end, they don’t see the need to switch to the new wave of business promotion.
However, what many don’t realize is that digital transformation is the future. The marketplace will tolerate only those companies that are agile, effective, and efficient. This means that if your business is not going digital in any aspect of its operations then you may be rendered obsolete in due course. As the popular adage goes, change is inevitable. As a business owner who hasn’t transitioned to the new age of marketing, you may be wondering what all this clamor is about. So, it begs the question: why do you need social media marketing?
Social media technology has opened up so many opportunities for both small and big businesses alike. When properly utilized, it could lead to unprecedented success. In case you are yet to be convinced on embracing social media marketing for your business, we’ve put a short list to help you see its value and perhaps, go ahead to make your brand a digital native.
1. Build Brand Awareness Cost-effectively
Most small business owners don’t realize it but brand awareness is a key determinant of your success. Many falsely imagine that once they have an excellent product or service, sales will come in fast and furious. Nothing could be further from the truth. A great product or service doesn’t necessarily guarantee triumph. It’s akin to groping in the darkness of the market where no customer can see you. Certainly, you first need to promote your company and its products/services so that your target market becomes aware of its existence. Customers like to know about a company before they purchase, partner, or hire them. That much is granted. However, for the majority of small businesses, the financial investment required to conduct a properly integrated promotion is way too high. This is where social media technology comes in to save you some cash by providing relatively low-cost promotion channels with high impact prospects. You can use various social media channels to position and promote your business on an affordable budget.
2. Consumers are Moving Online
Unlike the old days when the brick and mortar model ruled the world of business, a new trend is quickly catching up; click and mortar. This trend is fast gaining momentum across the globe, and it’s powered by the consumer shift to digital, which has since been amplified by the COVID-19 pandemic. From a general standpoint, it may seem like a simple trend. However, its impact on business is profound and pervasive than you can imagine. One of the most prominent impacts has been on consumer behavior, where we now see prospects beginning their purchase journey online. They search for their social networks to learn about the business offering the services or products that they intend to buy. Finding information on social media helps to validate the business, and it helps buyers to narrow down to their choice of sellers. What this essentially means is that if your company is not online, you will lose a stream of potential customers who will ultimately go to your competitors who have embraced social media marketing strategies.
3. Connect With Your Customers Easily
Before the advent of social media technology, keeping in touch with customers was a cumbersome and expensive affair especially for companies with mass-market products/services. As marketing orientation shifts from transaction to relationship-based business, the need to connect with customers effectively and efficiently has never been this important. Social media technologies have greatly narrowed down the gap between businesses and customers. Today, you can consistently keep in touch with your customers and build long-term value through repeat purchases. The ability to promptly respond to customers’ questions, compliments, and even complaints helps solidify loyalty to your brand.