Since social media emerged in the early 2000’s, there is no debate that it has positively influenced the success of businesses. Social media, which started with a small networking site known as Six Degrees(1) in 1997, not only implemented a new way of communicating, but it also altered the way business is conducted. Before social media existed, businesses depended on traditional forms of advertising such as newspapers, commercials, billboards, radio, etc. Now businesses heavily rely on social media for marketing and business needs, making it essential to be successful in this day and age. There are many ways social media influences business which include: social media marketing, customer service, brand reputation, brand loyalty, audience, and engagement.
Social Media Marketing
The most obvious and influential way social media has impacted business is by implementing a new way of advertising and marketing. According to nealschaffer.com, “A whopping 93% of marketers worldwide are using social media business. In 2022, almost 92% of marketers who work for companies with more than 100 employees in the United States are expected to start using social media for marketing(2).” Social media is not only a form of communication between peers, but has also become an effective way for businesses to communicate and advertise their products and or services. Social media is an easy and free way for brands to market and sell themselves and has become one of the primary ways to advertise in our day and age. Social media allows for access to impactful data such as consumer interactions which help brands debate which products are doing well in the market. Another way social media has impacted marketing is through the use of brand ambassadors and influencers. Social media is a space where users can follow celebrities and popular figures, which is effective and useful to get people to see their product. If your favorite celebrity is using a product would you be more inclined to purchase it as well? This explains why social media influencers are so prominent and successful in business.
Social media has become a primary way for customers to interact with a given brand. Social media allows for communication with a company and helps determine the brand’s reputability. Often, customers will post product reviews as well as positive or negative interactions they have with a brand on social media which can heavily impact a brand’s reputation. According to socialmediatoday.com, “Studies show that 70 percent of brands on social outlets respond to customer complaints within the first 24 hours(3).” Customer to Business interactions are accessible to everyone which is why it is so important for brands to respond to customer feedback. Social media applications such as Twitter and Facebook offer and are strictly devoted to replying to customers feedback and concerns, and in doing so, increase reputability and customer trust.
Social media has such a drastic impact on brand reputation, in both a positive and negative way. Since social media is public and accessible to the entire globe, every person can see a positive or negative brand interaction. Brand reputation is so critical in this day and age, especially when devoted to social media marketing efforts. A brand can be built up just as fast as it can be dragged down. This is why brand reputation, ESPECIALLY on social media platforms, is critical. Once something is out there on the internet, it can never be deleted. Many brands have experienced backlash for posting insensitive content to their feeds which can have an immediate negative impact on their reputation.
Brand loyalty is such a prominent factor in today’s business world because there are so many similar products and services advertised especially on social media. Brand loyalty is a determining factor in brand success due to the fact that it drives in-store traffic, visits to your website, word-of-mouth recommendations, and the conversion of leads to customers(4). As touched on in the brand reputation area of this blog post, positive interactions with followers is a necessity if you want to keep your customer. Communication is essential because individuals want to be loyal to brands who truly care about their consumer experience, and social media can be an immediate sign to see if a brand is meeting their mission.
Social media also plays a key role in growing your business and audience. Social media allows for customer attraction in all parts of the world, which essentially spreads your business globally. Social media has no limit, and is a cost effective way to interact with people in other countries to expand and help broaden your market. Growing your social media presence helps similar brands and interested customers find you and learn more about your product and service, even if your company resides in a different part of the world. Social media has allowed for company growth by utilizing all the successful platforms have to offer.
Last but not least, social media allows for business to consumer engagement. Social media easily allows customers to find you on social media, follow, like, interact, and share your posts with others. Brand engagement is so critical in this day and age because positive brand engagement can ultimately lead to brand loyalty which helps promote a positive experience. Brand engagement helps businesses have social media presence and establish themselves online and on popular social platforms. It helps allow for deeper connections with consumers which is one of the main missions of a brand. A happy consumer market allows for a happy business. If your consumers are happy and pleased with your product and service, it will be seen. Social media has allowed for drastic influence on the well-being of businesses. Social media has rapidly improved the success of businesses in the ways we discussed above. The world of social media is only improving so one can’t even imagine how it will improve business in the near future.
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