Do you think of social media as just one more thing to cross off your daily to-do list? If so, you are missing out on the greatest benefit social media can give your business. Building relationships with your social media community turns them into customers with benefits.
- Before You Start: You have a business that you want to grow.
- Learning level: 1 | Social Media Basics
- Article Last Updated: Saturday, March 2, 2013
Why Should You Care About Social Media?
First, a question. What is the greatest business asset that you don’t own and can’t control?
(Ok, technically you don’t own your employees, but assuming that you treat them well and pay them a fair wage, they willingly cooperate with you. That’s close enough.)
The answer: it’s your customers. A business without customers is just an idea, a business plan with overhead and expenses. It’s the customers that convert your brilliant skills and vision into your business.
Social media gives you an entirely new way to understand and know your customers. It allows you to see them outside of a business exchange. It puts them into a broader context, a more social context. Social media lets you see them as whole people. And social media lets them interact with your business as a person. Your business exchanges are transformed into human interactions.
Think of them as business friends. Or customers with benefits.
Social Media Benefits
So why would a business want to invest its time, effort, and often money, to build these strong relationships with it’s customers?
I mean, they are already buying your products and services, right? What more could you want?
Here’s what social media can give your business:
- Word of mouth advertising. How about creating an army of evangelists who brag about how smart they are because they are your customer to all of their friends?
- Repeat sales. What about getting more repeat business from your existing customers because they feel like you really listen to them and understand what they need?
- New business ideas. What about getting some great new business ideas from people who already love your business and can see business opportunities in your blind spot?
- Shorter product development cycles. How much faster could you get new products and services to market if you have input from customers from the time you have the first idea?
- Increased visibility. What about having your loyal customers introduce you to new people who can change the course of your business growth? I’m thinking about suppliers, vendors, employees, and maybe even business partners or investors.
Wouldn’t that change your business for the better?
Isn’t that worth a little time and effort in your already busy schedule?
Start With A Vision
So before you start getting into the practical mindset of how to make this happen, give yourself a few minutes to dream.
What vision do you have for your business?
What have you been afraid to dream because you couldn’t see how it might happen?
For just a minute, give yourself permission to dream the biggest dream possible for your business, the future that would knock your socks off.
And what if social media is the path to that future for your business?
I believe social media is a major component for your future business success. Stick around and I’ll show you how to do this, one goal, one strategy, one project at a time.
Your turn: What secret dreams do you have for your business? How has social media changed your relationships with your customers?