Let’s get to the bottom line: How will social media actually boost my business?
When did successfully squeezing a message into 140 characters equate to big business? About the time that Twitter became the second most-used search engine, purchasing and using virtual goods became a daily habit (and a billion dollar industry), and Facebook cornered the market in television, online, and mobile advertising.
We get it: social media is revolutionizing the way we do life. Now your Facebook newsfeed is brimming with a never-ending photo stream of your high school friend’s baby, Grandma can Skype with the family everyday (oh boy, and does she take advantage of that), and there is an entirely new strategy for clipping coupons that has left newspaper inserts in the dust. We are the offspring of the digital age: the most tech-savvy, connected generation the Earth has ever supported. How does this phenomena translate into profits for your business?
Even though Facebook and Yelp exhibited less-than stellar first quarter earnings in May, Sandy Carter reveals estimates in Forrester Research that outline the market opportunity for social media software. Such software is expected to exceed $6 billion by 2016, marking an increase of 60% annually from 2010. Do you find this significant? Because we do. Let’s take a peek at a few strategies about how to translate your social media into profit:
1) Focus on the Benjamins:
Mitchell York suggests that small business owners need to de-clutter their desktop of to-do’s and shift their focus back to the almighty dollar. He proposes that the bottom line can be increased through a series of simple changes. Some of these include streamlining management costs, improving operating procedures, and training each employee as a salesperson. Brushing up on these basic business techniques will strengthen the momentum of already existing efforts and clear the way for innovation.
2) Connect With Your People:
According to Patricia Sigmon, author of Six Steps to Creating Profit, it is essential that businesses set themselves apart from the competition by staying visible and connected to consumer. This means diving into the web and polishing up that dusty online presence. Utilizing your blog, Twitter, Facebook, and even YouTube can help manage your online reputation and connect your business to the target audience.
3) Tool up:
In Ric Dragon’s “Social Marketology”, he articulates that the bridge between social media and pleasing the CEO is in the measurement and analytical tools. Using these metrics, marketers can connect the dots between the social media campaign and the program’s profitability. Building a plan based on the analytical findings will help drive results and increase profitability.
Do you think that integrating these strategies could help build your business and perhaps even line your pocket? The odds are in favor of those successfully harnessing social media as an integral piece of the marketing strategy.
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Article by Kristen Hale
Kristen Hale is a recent graduate of Kennesaw State University, where she has studied communication, public relations and marketing. She dabbles in writing, voice-overs, acting and attempting to cook like Giada. You can see her portfolio on Behance and follow her on Twitter.