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Social media are applications or website that makes people engage in social networking through creating and also sharing contents. There are different types of social media and they include Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, snap chat and Pinterest. Social media has millions of users worldwide and that’s why most businesses are moving to doing their adverts and also selling their products through the social media platforms. Businesses have started using social media so that they can be able to get customer feedback and also address the queries that customers have. The importance of social media on businesses is that it improves the brand awareness, it is cost-effective to use social media, companies are able to engage with their clients, it improves loyalty, creates market awareness and increases brand authority.
Types of social media and how it’s used on businesses
Choosing a social media platform depends on where most customers are concentrated, accessibility and whether the customers can be able to engage in the social media platform (Glimore, 2014). Most customers are usually found on Facebook as compared to Instagram and Twitter. Social media marketing always includes whitepapers, product coupons, and discounts on site-wide, eBooks, offers that have a limited time, free shipping and giveaways.
Facebook has about 2 billion users on a monthly basis hence making it the best platform for social media advertisement since it has the most users than any other social media platform. Facebook is always preferred by most companies for their e-commerce advertising since it cost $1per lead on advertising reports. Advertising in Facebook is priced depending on the audience one is targeting and the budget that has been set aside for advertisement (McHale, 2012). The more money is used in the Facebook advertisement the more efficient the algorithms of Facebook will become in advertising. In the Facebook advertisement, one needs to set up the advertisement, then set up the target and finally set up the retargeting. For a Facebook advertisement to be successful one need to run a different advertisement on the target audience, use emoji so that it can attract more people, test new advertisement after every two weeks, and target a different audience. The importance of marketing in Facebook is that it’s cheap, information about a company can be shared on the Facebook profile, pictures and videos can be shared, the company is able to talk to potential clients and talk to potential customers directly, customers are able to be offered support, increases brand awareness, promotes target advertising, increases traffic to a company’s website and deal offering through places.
Facebook always scrutinize data that its users enter into their profile and know the type of information in regard to every person (Chaney, 2012). Most businesses usually pay a certain fee so that they can be able to access this information and use the information so that they can be able to advertise on the target market only. For instance, P&G uses information in Facebook to market their pampers brand in that they analyze data and check the female users who have listed 'new mothers' on their profile and formulate advertisements that will attract most of the new mothers on Facebook to be using pampers.
Deals can be offered through places by companies knowing the location of their customers. Facebook can track the location of people in a particular area and businesses use this information to post deals such as discounts offered depending on where the clients are. When customers step in particular locality, a business organization can post about the location of their branches in that locality and the offers that are available such as rewards and discounts on commodities.
Facebook allows for companies to put a link of their websites on their Facebook pages and this increases the traffic on their website. Customers can use the link provided to go to the company’s website and purchase commodities from the website (Coles, 2017). Customers become receptive since they already know what to expect on the website and this is because they have familiarized with the company’s products from the Facebook page.
Facebook allows companies to share information about their companies on their profile. Companies can post details about their location, the products and services they deal with and even their pricing. When customers access the Facebook page of the company they are able to know the important details about the company such as its location and also the products it sells (McHale, 2012). Facebook advertising is cheap as compared to using other methods of advertisements and this enables companies to save on cost while at the same time marketing their products to a wider target market hence increasing their market share at the end of the day.
Instagram users are more than 500 million and more people use it as compared to Facebook and Twitter, with 58% on Facebook and by 2000% on Twitter. Instagram involves majorly sharing of images and videos hence it becomes more appealing to the audience. Most users of Instagram are females of between 18-30 years and if a company wants to target this market the best place to advertise on the social media is on Instagram. Advertisement on Instagram can be linked directly to product page hence one can view the products directly (McDonald, 2016). Advertisement on Instagram cost $5 per a thousand impression created on the advertisement. In Instagram advertising companies should focus on customized audience that are gained through an email list, pixel tracking, look for other sources of audience by using either Facebook or Instagram algorithm, images that are of real people should be used when advertising on Instagram, irresistible offers should be made by the companies and finally the use of hashtags should be employed. The importance of Instagram marketing is that Instagram always centers itself on telling stories, it allows for sharing of visual content, its ability to reach a wider market coverage, business people are able to follow their competitors, allows for companies to get feedback and companies are able to engage with their customers.
Customers are mostly attracted by what they can be able to see and hence posting contents of a company’s products in form of images and videos will attract more clients to comment on the company’s post. Through sharing of visual contents, companies will be able to know what images of their brands attract more customers and which images do no attract customers and this will enable them to use the images that will increase their customer attraction. Instagram also allows companies to post stories about their brand (Peters, 2010). Customers like emotional stories and companies can take this to their advantage by posting what the brand is actually about. Visual stories attract more comments from customers’ hence increasing marketing awareness.
Instagram enables business organization reaches more people since the monthly users of Instagram are about 700 million. When companies post on Instagram they need to employ the use of hashtags so that so that customers can be able to get a company’s products easily (Shih, 2016). For instance, P&G employs the use of #newpampersbaby dry so that as so as Instagram users search using that hashtag they are able to be connected directly to the company’s products. Instagram has also allowed more people to be engaged with their customers. Instagram has the highest level of engagement as compared to other social media sites since Instagram users are more open-minded to engage in conversations (Coles, 2017). To encourage more people to engage in a company’s Instagram page, the company can start by following people who post about a company’s brand and also keep commenting on those posts. The company can also use hashtags so that it can encourage other people to join in on the conversation.
Businesses’ use Instagram to follow their competitors so that they can be able to know what they are up to, check on how the competitors are interacting with their customers and use the information gained to their own advantage. For instance, Domino pizza can follow the competitors who also make pizza so that they can be able to know their marketing strategies and be able to counter their marketing strategies by offering better packages to consumers such as offering them free gifts and rewards. Businesses are also able to get feedback through Instagram since they are able to know what people are posting about their products and services through following their major customers and checking the images and videos that their customers upload on their profile (McDonald, 2016). The company will be able to know the perception of customers in regards to their products and also they will be able to know areas that need improvements by checking on the negative comments and complain from their customers.
. Importance of social media
When companies are in social media it enhances brand loyalty from the customers and this is because more customers are able to connect and engage with the company (Susan & Randall, 2010). The company can be able to urge the customers to stick to the company’s products through social media, and also the company can be able to know whether the customers are satisfied with the products and services that a company supplies. Customers like associating with products where they can have a channel of communication in case they have any query hence when companies have social media platform it encourages customer loyalty from their customers.
Create and improve brand awareness
Awareness is created by creating a profile on a social media platform. Once a profile has been created the marketers should keep the company’s profile active by posting on the page daily so that it can be able to have more followers and also gain more traffic (Sarah-Jayne & Dean, 2012). The more the company post the more consumers start being aware of the company’s products and also more consumers are attracted to it since they are referred to by other loyal customers to go check the social media profile of the company hence creating more awareness of the company’s products.
Businesses can be able to know the needs of consumers in the market without directly communicating with the consumers through checking the comments and the interest of consumers online (Shrivastava, 2013). Companies can track what consumers keep commenting about a company’s products and what they keep on demanding to be availed, and through this, the company will be able to produce according to the demand of the market hence it will be able to satisfy the consumers at the end of the day.
Customer satisfaction and focusing on achieving customer loyalty enables companies to achieve brand authority in the market (Shih, 2016). Once customers are satisfied with a company’s product and services, whenever the company posts anything relevant the consumers will comment and this will lead to loyalty. The consumers keep on commenting on the company’s products and even share the images and advertisements that the company posts on social media. The consumers’ share the advertisements on their own social media pages and hence helps the company in marketing its products.
Engaging with customers
Social media platform provide avenues where companies can be able to engage directly with their customers (Peters, 2010). The more a company posts its products and does active marketing on the social media platforms the more likely customers will respond to the post that the company is posting. Companies can engage customers attention by posting rewards for instance if customers buy a particular product, for instance, Domino post if one buys a box of pizza, he gets one free. Advertisements like this can get consumers attention since most consumers like rewards and gifts hence the consumers will engage with the company on how they can be able to get the company’s products.
Effective in terms of cost
Creating an account and signing up on the social media platform is always free hence making it very cheap for companies to market their products. If companies decide to go for the paid advertising, the fee charged is usually at a cheaper rate and one is able to reach a wider target market and be able to get more results from the marketing strategy. Most people around the world access social media hence making it the easiest and the cheapest way to do marketing since the target market is wide and most people will be able to view the advert hence getting the results easily (McHale, 2012). Companies and most business firms are able to get their investment returns by just using a little advertisement cost on social media.
Customer satisfaction is created once the companies are able to address complains that the consumers raise and also deliver the products as per the requirements or expectations of the consumers (McDonald, 2016). Companies use social media platforms to know complains that the consumers raise and also address complains on time, the companies are also able to know the customers demand and deliver as per the needs of the consumers. An example of a company that has used Facebook and Instagram for advertisement is P&G when advertising pampers.
Pampers uses social media outlets for marketing, to help children who are born prematurely and who have birth defects and to also address issues facing their own brands that customers complain about. Pampers has about 67000 followers on Instagram and18 million followers on Facebook. Through social media pampers can market their products and also be able to address various issues arising about their products. Pampers markets its products through social media by forming incentives such as making mothers post pictures of their children on Instagram, Facebook and twitter then the one with the majority of votes wins and is given gift prizes. Such incentives are marketing strategies by awarding the consumers; the consumers become satisfied hence attracting more sales in the company (Glimore, 2014). Pampers encourage their consumers to share stories of children who have fought diseases and premature births on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter through #LittlestFighters that triggers a donation of $5 to March of dimes with every story shared. P&G create awareness about premature births on its social media outlets so that people can be able to know what causes it and also through the stories that are shared from time to time about babies fighting, donations can be gotten that are used to help the babies born prematurely and also the children born with birth defects.
Social media platform plays an important role in the businesses today. Most companies have started embracing the use of social media to market its products and also to engage the customers in feedback. Companies create awareness by offering rewards on social media, putting images of the company’s products and also posting from time to time about the company’s products hence creating more awareness. Customers are also able to send feedback on the social media platforms whether they were satisfied with the company’s products and in case of any complains the customers complain about, companies are able to address it on time. Social media has enabled most companies to increase their market share and sales in general.
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