What started as the newest way to keep in touch and share memories, could now serve as a catalyst to bring small businesses in to the running against their larger competitors.
According to a recent Deloitte report, close to one in three US consumers make buying decisions based off social media. Not only that, but they are four times more likely to spend more on purchases when social media is involved.
The benefits to businesses continue. According to research done by The Sydney Morning Herald, one message on social media generates $4.80 in additional revenue for the organizer. And depending on the outlet used, the revenue can go up from there with Twitter generating around $10.90 per share.
Aside from the stated influences on revenue, social media also presents businesses with an invaluable opportunity to spread their reach and grow their customer base. Once a business chooses to utilize social media, they open up the possibility of sharing, a common feature of social media platforms. One single share can result in an average of nine additional visits to the shared post. Again, depending on the platform used, the reach can vary. With an average of an additional 38 visits, Twitter seems to be the lead for generating traffic, followed by LinkedIn with an average of 11 additional visits, and Facebook with 7.
All of this increase in revenue comes to businesses with little or no additional cost. Small businesses have smaller budgets to work with in comparison to their larger competitors, sometimes leaving little to go to marketing efforts. This is where social media comes to the rescue. While there may be some time commitment in learning these online platforms, there is no cost to the business, unlike many other traditional forms of marketing.
Social media might actually be the best fitting form of marketing for small businesses. Often times the difference between a larger business and a smaller one lies in the level of interaction. Advocates of small businesses stand by their commitment to community and their dedication to customer relations. This level of interaction is much harder to come by with larger businesses. Social media gives those small businesses the opportunity to personalize their approach even further and to continue to form relationships with their customers, but on an even wider scale.
We Are Social released a report stating that out of around three billion internet users worldwide, around two billion have active social media accounts. To put it simply, almost all consumers are on some social media platform, whether that be Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn. So then, social media could allow small businesses to grow their community far beyond local and even national reaches.
With all of that established, I think it’s safe to say social media can and should be utilized by small businesses. From increasing revenue, to driving site traffic and expanding the customer base, social media presents small businesses with an opportunity and one they’d be better off not to ignore.