Social media has become an essential part of our everyday lives, and more so for businesses. Presently, every kind of enterprise big or small is making use of social media in the best possible manner, to maximize its profits and attain growth.
Social media offers an excellent opportunity to small businesses for showcasing their products/ services and reaching a wider audience.
The reach of a small business has become as wide as that of huge multinationals. Many small businesses are currently using social media for promoting their businesses. Research revealed that 70% of small businesses deem social media as their most crucial marketing tool. The same platforms used for marketing products are also used for engaging pre-existing customers and enticing new ones.
The above chart shows that out of the total global population of more than 7.5 billion, more than half of them are Internet users, and 42% are social media users.
Such a vast user base affirms that as far as small businesses are concerned, social media has opened a wide range of possibilities from distributing their content and building a loyal following of their brands.
Two Way Communication through Social Media
Social media platforms allow two-way communication between the business and its customers through active engagement. There are built-in analytic tools within social media websites that will enable small businesses to gauge the effects of its campaigns and carry out necessary improvements.
Free of cost social media tools prove to be an added advantage when it comes to maintaining the business’s online presence. Small companies have incorporated social media trends that are proving to be extremely beneficial.
Here are six social media trends that small enterprises have incorporated to attain maximum growth.
Chatbots for Better Customer Service
The Internet has made us impatient. We want everything right now, right here without losing any time at all. Immediacy has brought about a dilemma for small businesses; either they refrain from responding instantly to the customer, or they risk making mistakes. In both cases, customer satisfaction suffers.
With the advent of Chatbots, this dilemma has, to some extent, been resolved. A Chatbot allows small businesses to interact with their customers in a very personalized manner. With the number of messages exchanged between companies and their customers crossing the billion mark, Chatbots have provided small businesses with an opportunity to engage their customers in real time any time of the day.
Source: Capital One
Small businesses are finally getting used to this novel technology. For instance, Capital One’s Eno, a banker-style bot, helps customers manage their finances through chat. The process is more convenient than logging into an account.
Personalization of Content
As a rule of thumb, people are not interested in content that doesn’t concern them no matter how interesting and engaging it may be. This phenomenon becomes more relevant when a person is in the process of interacting with his / her favorite brand.
Generic content will put them off. Consumers are more interested in finding something unique that caters to their needs and demands at any given time. Most of the people will become frustrated when they are unable to lay our hands on specifically relevant content.
A significant small business trend that is slowly emerging is improved content personalization. Social media is evolving at a rapid pace. It is offering features that are specific to small businesses.
Combined with built-in analytics, these features are proving invaluable to businesses.
Small businesses are creating much better and more personalized content for their customers. This kind of content successfully engages the audience on a personal level and makes it easier for the business to offer their customers precisely what they are looking for without unnecessarily going through generic content.
Social Media Listings
Small business has come to understand that merely tracking the content posted by its competitors on social media doesn’t cut it. They must also keep an account of the likes, mentions, and reviews offered by other users.
Monitoring social media is allowing small businesses to collect a vast amount of data regarding themselves and their competitors. This data, in its pure form, is being used for designing and implementing their comprehensive marketing strategy.
The above chart shows a study conducted by the Pew Research Center; it highlights the trends of daily Internet usage. It reveals that 49% of Internet users log on to the net to carry out online searches. Most of these online searches start with calls for recommendations or requests regarding buying information.
A rising trend among small businesses is to monitor these requests posted by online users and offer appropriate responses. The pattern is known as social listening, and it allows small companies to collect relevant information and provide timely and to-the-point answers.
Regular users of social media websites like YouTube, Instagram, and Snapchat, are familiar native posted content, yet, many are unaware that Instagram and Snapchat have added a timed-video feature to reach more specific audiences.
There are YouTube alternatives that are gaining traction among users. Stories posted on Instagram are more popular. A significant number of Instagram users open their stories every day. On the other hand, Snapchat is more popular among younger people.
Several other platforms are providing overlapping features and allowing small businesses to make their selection based on the specific needs of their niche market members. These businesses are carrying out analyses of several platforms and investing in the ones they think suits their needs best.
Tapping into The Power of The Video
Videos are wildly popular over social media, which increases their importance as potent marketing tools. Videos will become more and more popular in the coming months. That is why small businesses have been trying to generate customer engagement through them.
Source: Digital Information World
The above chart shows that 84% of marketers deem video creation as a necessary skill when they are hiring new professionals.
Videos posted over Facebook create more engagement. They are being mentioned and shared more often than any other content on the same platforms.
Small businesses have embraced this trend. They are creating better videos and connecting them to their written content on the blogs.
A study has predicted that by the next year, the better part of the US population will access social media websites exclusively through their mobile devices like smartphones and tabs, etc.
There is a rising trend of mobile-only apps, which is revolutionizing the small business arena. They are continually coming up with content optimized for the cell phone and similar devices.
This trend is allowing small businesses to reach their customers on-the-go.
The world is continuously changing around us. Small businesses have come to terms with the fact that the traditional methods of marketing do not apply anymore. They are continually coming up with innovative ways to allow small businesses to reach their customers on-the-go.
These rising trends of marketing over the Internet is not only benefiting the businesses but also the customers in more ways than one can imagine.