Will Social Media Help or Hinder your Business Success

Now that social media platforms are recognised, not only as opportunities to collect customer data, but also for a super-fast way to spread the word wide about brands and products, how much of your marketing budget will you allocate to social media in 2013? According to some recent global research carried out by Pitney Bowes Software, many businesses in Australia, France, Germany, the UK and the USA are planning to spend about half of their budgets that way.

Is Social Media Helping you?

But those in Australia and the US are ahead of their European counterparts in monitoring the success of their social media strategies. Whilst it may be difficult to get the figures to calculate the actual return on your social media investment, it is easier to find out an engagement rate for your posts by counting numbers of likes, shares and comments as well as fans. Perhaps your outsourced bookkeepers can help with this.

Avoiding a Social Media Backlash

Social media can not only enhance reputations, it can also destroy them. The Pitney Bowes report also indicates that if you upset your audience on Facebook and the like, you’re likely to lose 65% of them. Facebook is still the most used social media network, and is way ahead of its rivals.

It has never been more important to get customer service right. Anyone dealing with marketing should liaise with people and teams dealing with customer service, especially on the complaints side of things. When people call in, you need to catch potential issues before they get on to social media if you want to protect your brand and retain customers. Get any complaints dealt with quickly and give the complainers a positive experience to relate to their social media buddies. It’s also crucial that everyone in your business understands how to use social media and, perhaps even more important, how they should not use it, especially not bad mouthing your competition or anyone else.

What Consumers Respond to

The survey found that consumers respond best to discounts and vouchers for deals at below normal price. They are also interested in forthcoming events and sales. New product launches also get a fair amount of interest. They are less interested in reading newsletters or completing feedback forms and surveys, or even reading about a company’s social responsibility performance. It’s worth taking note of the findings so that you can alter your tactics to get more favourable attention.

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