411 Blog

Why your Small Business Needs Social Media

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Ready to get social? Read our Entrepreneur’s Guide to Social Media Content.

There’s a ton of buzz about social media for business, but it’s not just a hype. Social media isn’t just for keeping in touch with your family across the world or your old friends—social media is an essential business tool. However, there’s a big misconception that social media is only for Fortune 500 companies and this simply isn’t the case. Social media is one of the best tools small businesses can use.

According to Sherpa Marketing:

  • Only 57% of small businesses in Canada use social media (but that number is quickly rising)
  • 46% of business owners use social media to promote their brand
  • 38% use social media to sell their products and services
  • Facebook is the most popular social media platform for business

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“It’s important that Canadian businesses realize the true value social media possesses and use it to engage its audience.”

Here are 6 benefits of using social media for small business.

1. Community Building. You’re already part of your local community but it’s also important for your business to build an online community. Social media is an important tool for customer engagement, because it allows for two way conversations, as opposed to traditional advertising and marketing. This means you can make real connections and foster existing relationships with your customers.

2. Affordable Marketing. Social media is a valuable option for small business marketing in comparison to paid advertising. It doesn’t necessarily have to replace paid marketing campaigns, but it is a low cost way to complement other marketing efforts. You can use social media to promote your products/services, create events and do much more.

3. Lead Generation. Social media can be a great tool for social selling, which is essentially finding, qualifying, and nurturing sales leads via social media. With websites such as Hootsuite—a social media management tool—you can find customers looking for your product or service. For example, if you own a restaurant, you can use Hootsuite to find people in your area tweeting about craving the food that you serve and invite them to come by your restaurant.

4. Improve Customer Service. Customer service is arguably the most important aspect of any business. If you don’t have happy customers, you won’t have much success because your customers are the ones supporting your business. Social media is an a new approach to hearing your customers’ perspective and personalize the way you respond.

5. Increase Brand Awareness and Reach. Small business branding is essential to stand out from the competition, both large and small. Social media allows you to personalize your company and spread your brand message for little to no cost.

6. Drive website traffic. Social media helps to improve SEO because the more shares you get, the higher your search engine ranking will be. This will then help to drive people to your website.

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The bottom line is, if you’re not on social media, you’re missing out. Once you develop your social network you can leverage it to improve your small business. It’s an important tool for success, and isn’t as scary as it may seem. If you need more social media assistance be sure to subscribe to the 411.ca blog for helpful tips.

Ready to get social? Read our Entrepreneur’s Guide to Social Media Content.

Laura has a B.A. in Honours Communications Studies from McMaster University and is currently enrolled in Humber’s Public Relations Postgraduate program. She is passionate about writing and local business, so this blog is the perfect combination of the two.