Online Social Media has opened up new opportunities for you to reach and expand your customer base. In fact, Online Social Media (OSM) is an OSM (Awesome) way to drive traffic to your brick and mortar store and your online store if you have one.
What is Online Social Media?
Online Social Media are online services, platforms or websites such as Facebook, Twitter or YouTube that through members sharing common interests or backgrounds can create communities that build social networks or social relations. Social networking sites allow users to share thoughts and ideas, events and activities, and interests within their individual networks. These social networking sites provide a user with a profile ( a representation of the user) where they can build their social links, together with a number of other features. The biggest impact of online social media is that people are able to communicate and connect with each other immediately.
imMEDIAte Results: The awesome thing about OSM is that if you use online social media on a regular basis as part of your arsenal to get your existing and new customers to spend with you the results can be pretty immediate. Unlike traditional advertising such as TV, radio or magazines, it can often take weeks if not months such as with magazines, and requires a lot of planning, and it may take many more months after the marketing campaign to know if it has been effective. Online social media allows you to set up accounts in a matter of minutes and begin connecting with potential and existing customers.
imMEDIAcy: Social media services such as Facebook can be powerful in that they can provide you with immediate feedback from your customers. As you are able to interact to the customers who visit your store you have a powerful tool to really understand their needs and wants. Posting a question and asking for feedback about customer’s experiences in your store and how you can provide a more memorable experience for them is an opportunity to ‘communicate’ direct with your customers. This benefits you in that you are able to provide a better experience and builds repoire as you make them feel important by asking their opinions.
FANtastic marketing: If used consistently and in creative ways, online social media can help you maintain and build your database of customers and create a community of raving fans. Your customers have the power to increase your business revenue simply by commenting on the great products they have bought from your store or the exceptional experience they had while there. Society as a whole has become de-sensitised and wary of traditional media marketing. Television, radio and magazines don’t hold the same power as they used to have to compel us to spend.
People power: People are more likely these days to listen to their peers. A positive peer review can cause an avalanche of sales to your online or offline store. Don’t underestimate people power. These days customers have a powerful voice and it lies in the power of online social media to quickly disseminate information. That is why it is important that if you begin to use online social media as your number one weapon of choice to reach your customers that you use it wisely. Ensure that you do have great products and impeccable service in order that people can start talking.
Cheap as chips: The great thing about online social media is that is literally cheap as (silicone) chips. If you have a smart phone or a computer you can begin your OSM campaign straight away!
In the second part of this article I will discuss how you can use Online Social Media to make your business OSM!
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