Understanding Social Media and what Drives it
It is very difficult today for the common person or the business leader to understand social media and what drives it.
So much of what is written in Social Media circles is written for full time marketers by social media gurus. I want to be helpful and I want you to understand even though you may never have the need for my services.
Basically, and I mean very basically, there are three things that make people decide to use a product or service. Social media can help you with all three areas because in essence they are the very things that have made Social media what it is today. Here is the list and the explanations. Hope it helps.
Word of mouth has always been the most powerful form of promotion in the past and still is to this day. The only problem is that word of mouth now happens on the net and specifically via social media networks. That is why there is a real need for understanding social media today.
When a friend or follower talks well about a product or service on Facebook, Twitter and Linked-In this puts a big exclamation mark on that business that cannot be forgotten or overlooked. These are your friends and you respect what they think. Even if you don’t need the product or service at this time your brain will store this information for a later date.
Social media has improved word of mouth by allowing more people in on the conversation at the same time. Also, Social media has made the information more accessible, easier to share and recorded it for future use. How does this work? Your wife finds her favorite makeup at a reduced price. She then takes out her smart phone and send off a message via her social media connections. Mary, her friend likes that make up too and she sends it to all her friends that include people your wife does not know. Before you know it the information has gone “viral” and like an infection it has spread to many people fast. This action virally provides free advertising and promotion for the seller resulting in big profits with little or no expense.
How fast? Well with 901 million people on Facebook alone the possibilities are endless. Last month the Koni Video on You Tube broke records as it spread to 40 million people in hours and in a few days topped out at nearly 90 million viewers. That my friend is fast! I am not saying we can get that kind of results when we advertise your business on the social media networks but the potential is there none the less.
2. Location , Location , Location-
Location is a huge asset in physical real estate and even more now in Social Media real estate. Today with the expanse of cyberspace and the growing internet sales potential, location is based on where your business lands in the search engines. Most people never look past the second page in a search and usually settle for the top three listings on the first page.
The new location creator is called search engine optimization. How do you get listed in the top three? Well, much goes into the formula but nothing beats key words and content. With Google now adding Facebook pages and Twitter pages to the Google search engine it has never been so important to use the right key words. The right key words have nothing to do with your professional explanation of the product and services but what the consumer will write in the search bar when looking for what you have to offer. This is something most businesses do not understand.
If you sell flooring and specifically carpet or rug you need to know that most people will use the word carpet when searching the web. I recently had a client whose website used the word rug and that was a big mistake. It sounds trivial but every person searching for what you have to offer counts. I asked him why he chose to label the tab in his website rugs and he told me that it was the official name among vendors. I advised him if his business is primarily a B2C or business to consumer he would need to change his site. He did and his Google ranking improved drastically.
I know another lady who sells a product for a large company and her three websites take up first through third ranking in Google in front of her source for the product who also sells to consumers. Why? It is simple her key words describe the product better, she is more consistent in using Social Media and her site attracts more buyers with its great content. On the web everything is about image and nobody knows that she buys from the fourth listing. It doesn’t matter how big her competitor’s warehouse is or how beautiful their lobby is decorated because her “cyberspace lobby” beats her competitors.
3. Value or Perceived Value-
Social Media has taken value to another level. The words “top”, “best” and the ever increasing use of reviews can make or break a business in this economy. The use of comments, ratings, opinions, and testimonials are what people want to know when purchasing or deciding to use a particular vendor. It doesn’t matter that you are the best or even the most qualified. In today’s competitive market people want to know what others are saying about you. Nothing can do more for you in that area than a good Social Media campaign that is backed up by a great website.
Let’s use Sushi for example. I know people that will drive past 15 Sushi stores to get to the store people are talking about in Social Media. Why, you ask because people want to be at the right place at the right time with the right people.
I recently heard some prospective clients say, “My customers don’t use the internet”. Usually they are talking about 45 yr-65yr old consumers. What they don’t know is that at present that age bracket is the fastest growing segment of Facebook users. No, they will not go into Social Media to make a purchase but what is wrong with presenting your product or service to them while they come on to see their grandchildren’s pictures? I think you get what I mean.
Let me explain perceived value to you and its benefits to your business. The number one user of You Tube is a young Asian girl who makes home videos of herself putting on make-up. She has over one billion hits and growing. Her audience is mostly 12-14 year old girls who want to have the latest looks. She feeds their daily need to be “celebrity beautiful” by copying the styles of the latest divas. Will most girls ever look like Madonna, Angelina Jolie, Beyoncé or Lady Gaga? No, but what they think or perceive is what matters today. Can your business produce a better image, a better life or a better feeling? If so then then you have value and people will throng to those businesses that can scratch their itch. Social media recognizes what the trends are and what people are thinking. I am not talking about next week but today. Can your business take advantage of that?
Understanding Social Media
So, there they are. You now have an understanding of what Drives Social Media. The above are the top three elements that drive Social Media today. Can your business use the above principles to direct a new, fresh wave of consumers to your website and to your products or services? Can you take what you have read and at least generate some good leads for your salespeople? If not, give us a call and we will be glad to answer your questions and help you kick start your business to a whole new level.