It is clear that social media has grown dramatically over the last few years and that with more than 800 million active users, the number of Facebook users is easily more than twice the size of the entire population of the United States!Its growth has been astronomical and today, millions of people are posting more personal and business information online than ever before. It is happening at lightning speed with thousands of posts, tweets and uploads occurring every hour.However it also important to get an understanding of how these sites are being used and what is involved in maintaining or resourcing your business presence on these sites. Your online footprint can stick around for a long time so does not underestimate how this can affect the perception of your brand in the market place. Spend some time upfront thinking about whether social media is right for your business.
It is very important that you understand the fundamentals of how is social media actually works and how it is being used. Perhaps you could consider trying it out for yourself by setting up a personal account, then testing some of the features, or get a trusted friend to show you their account and guide you through. Alternatively there are so many resources and ‘how to’ items online about social media, that you could run a search on Google or on YouTube on a particular topic of interest and watch the video tutorials to get informed.It is really important that you identify your purpose for getting involved in social media or any other marketing activity for that matter. You need to work out why you are taking part. Remember to be realistic about what you believe you will be able to achieve. Think about where your target audience would socialize online, and think about the amount of time and resources you would realistically be able to commit to maintaining and administering your site presence.
If you decide that social media is right for your business, carefully consider the amount and quality of information you want to share in the online sphere. Remember it will probably stay there for a long time, so you need to make sure it accurate and reliable information that is valuable to your target audience. the nature of social media means that you might not always be able to see the results of your campaign right away.
Your social media efforts might allow your consumers to ask more questions or further engage with your brand or product, but like most other relationship building activities, it takes time to build brand loyalty and repeat sales, it is likely that your social media activities will not have an immediate impact on sales that can be easily measured, there may be a lag.When it comes to consumer adoption, the growth of social networking sites has been exponential, however as more research is being done regarding site usage and consumer behavior, we begin to gain greater insights into the types of tasks and transactions people engage in when visiting social media sites.