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7 Benefits of Social Media Marketing for Small Businesses You are using an outdated browser. CJG Digital Marketing discusses the top Google Adwords options that you can use to reach more potential customers online. Discover the top local search marketing ideas that can help increase your chances of getting big in this year’s local search game. Following are 8 reasons why a full-scale, strategic digital marketing campaign is imperative for any company’s survival and growth.
In fact, the 2011 Social Media Marketing Industry Report has some good news for small business marketers.
Michael Stelzner authored the third-annual industry study in which he surveyed 3342 marketers, 47% of whom were either self-employed or small business owners. Over the course of the last 3 years, Stelzner has seen social media move from an uncertain strategy (2009 report) to a permanent fixture (2010 report) to a primary tool (2011 report) in the savvy marketer’s toolkit. Almost all marketers find that social media helps them stand out in an increasingly noisy marketplace. Small business owners were more likely than all other groups (89.2% reporting benefits) to see increased exposure. The self-employed and small business owners were more likely to report new partnerships, with at least 59% noting a benefit.
Small businesses were twice as likely to find qualified leads than other types of businesses.
Forty-eight percent of self-employed and small business owners saw improved sales as a direct result of their social media efforts. The self-employed (59%) and small business owners (58%) were more likely than others to see reductions in marketing costs when using social media marketing. Like last year’s report, the 2011 study proved that time is a key success factor for social media marketers. The power of endurance—those with 3 or more years of experience in social media marketing are seeing the greatest results. Likewise, those who spend at least 6 hours per week are almost twice as likely to see leads generated as those who spend 5 or fewer hours. The self-employed (80%) and small business owners (78%) were more likely to use LinkedIn than their counterparts (71%). The self-employed are the most likely to increase their use of LinkedIn in 2011 (68%) versus 61% for all marketers. While this is the first choice for all marketers, small businesses lag behind their larger counterparts (82% of large businesses see this as a key growth area). With all the reports on SEO and engagement benefits from video, I find myself wondering why small businesses aren’t leading the pack here.
Small business owners are the most likely to use outsourcing (34%), whereas only 24% of the self-employed have utilized outsourcing.
In a survey that highlights the increasing reach of social media marketing, it’s surprising to see trends that emphasize a growing use of more traditional (online and offline) marketing approaches. Nearly two-thirds of all businesses plan to increase their use of email marketing, but small businesses are the most likely of all.
Sixty percent of all marketers plan to increase their use of event marketing (networking and speaking at conferences and trade shows).
Eighty percent of all businesses plan to either maintain or increase their use of press releases in 2011. A surprising 42% of all businesses have no plans to utilize webinars or teleseminars in 2011.
The 2011 Social Media Marketing Industry Report has insights that help marketers from businesses of all sizes and levels of experience. Although there are many reasons why businesses ultimately decide to utilize social media, here are 5 of the top benefits of social media for your small business. More than one quarter of all the time people spend online is spent on social networks.  That’s an amazing number!
One of the greatest benefits of social media is your ability to provide value to your customers and potential customers with interesting and informative blogs, tweets and posts. Social media is a phenomenal tool that can facilitate business growth, improve brand reputation and support current marketing systems.

If you are already using social media for your business, share any of the benefits of social media you’ve experienced so far. I’ve also seen it used for customer support so customers can get a quick and easy response to a question or concern. Social Media Marketing You’ve probably heard all the reasons your business needs social media. Social Media Strategy Social media is a wonderful tool is for attracting more leads, customers and sales for your business.
LinkedIn Marketing LinkedIn is #1 business network and an absolute must if you are an entrepreneur, professional or sales person.
Smartdog digital provides no nonsense digital marketing advice to businesses and business owners directly. Since the recent rise in the popularity of Facebook, Twitter and other such social media websites, we have seen social media play an increasingly more important roll in today’s digital business strategy. I personally believe social media marketing to be an essential part of any SMEs overall digital strategy as it gives you the ability to move beyond any geographical, logistical or economic restrictions to reach out and connect with an entirely new customer group or demographic. Facebook has been a key part of our strategy to increase reach to our target demographic online, the response rate to our advert has been fantastic, with over 3,556 referrals generated to the site within three months. Obviously there can be a cost associated with using social media as an online marketing platform e.g.
Online marketing today is not just about listening to what the consumer wants, but about building a one-to-one relationship with your customers.
Social media gives companies the ability to build one to one relationships with customers on a personal rather than corporate facing level. It’s like meeting someone for the first time, we can usually tell if we like someone in the first minute or two. The report reveals that the self-employed (67%) and small business owners (66%) were more likely to strongly agree with this statement. For example, only 25% of those just getting started in social media saw new partnerships form, as compared to 80% or more of those with 3 or more years of experience. Even though this is a 100% increase over 2010, marketers are still not sure how and when to outsource their social media.
For example, at least 64% of all marketers plan to increase their use of search engine optimization and email marketing in 2011. Of these, the self-employed (70%) and small business owners (65%) are significantly more likely to participate than marketers from large corporations (43% to 38%, depending on the size of the company).
Small business owners are more than twice as likely (52%) to increase their use than businesses with 500 to 1000 employees (24%). In fact, social media is now the #1 activity online!  Men and women from all age groups and income levels are using social networking sites to get information, play games and shop.  Regardless of what their needs happen to be, they are turning to sites like Twitter and Facebook in order to find what they are looking for.
A larger audience sharing your content means more traffic to your web site and an increased opportunity for sales. When you are able to  solve a problem for people you immediately become a resource for them, and suddenly you have a super fan who can’t quit singing your praises to anyone who will listen!  Providing interesting and valuable free content, will turn potential customers into loyal customers who will be happy to refer you to their friends and family via social media and word of mouth. I think humanizing your brand is one of the biggest benefits of a strong social media presence, since it will ultimately help your small business create meaningful business relationships and brand ambassadors.
By doing so you are getting your name and brand recognized without needing to keep refreshing, revamping, or upgrading your website.
We help companies save money by providing a second opinion on their planned digital investments. Facebook advertising for example but social media is a low cost marketing platform which on the whole is free, the only thing you need to invest is time. Additionally, 72% of those surveyed saw increased traffic and subscriptions as a result of social media. So marketers shouldn’t make snap judgments on the value of social media after only a few months. In fact, 75% of those spending as little as 6 hours per week on social media marketing saw increased traffic. This could have to do with the relative inexperience of the audience (50% of the marketers have less than 1 year of experience). In fact, 49% of the self-employed plan on increasing their use compared to 27% of businesses with 500 to 1000 employees.

I teach my clients on how to use it to create relationships online and then develop them by taking them offline. Social media lets you connect to them directly and they’ll give you their honest opinion back.
Make sure your social pages look professional, contain your logo, have a link to your website, and are active. Websites with review pages or feedback links and surveys are rarely seen as worth a customer’s time, especially if there is no response from the company. Create content that is fun and interesting to your customer base and encourage them to share with their social circles.
Sure it’s free to post an engaging photo on Facebook, take part in an industry TweetChat, or upload a video to YouTube—but the cost is calculated in time. Tweets, shares, likes, and comments are all key benefits of social media for your small business vital to success in an ever-changing marketing and business landscape. Be Adaptive to the changing times to stay relevant in your industry!Social Media 101Looking to finally get your business on social media, or hoping for some guidance to improve? You can open up continuous streams that target the names of your competitors or keyword phrases. It can be utilized in some awesome ways when integrated with other more traditional forms of marketing and advertising. Social HP 32 Image: Driving EDU Leads Through Social Media Brand Ambassadors Driving EDU Leads Through Social Media Brand Ambassadors Social HP 25 Image: Do You Want Loyal Customers? For example, you might be doing a big radio campaign for an event, you can then push people to your Facebook page to sign up. Or you might have a brochure telling people to use your hashtag on Twitter to be entered into a contest. Simple and integrated.You Can Prove Your ExpertiseOver time your audience and customers will being to see you as an industry leader.
Your consistent messaging about key issues and problem solving content positions your business as a voice of authority. Competing with some of the larger brand name companies in the same industry who can offer lower costs, whether marginally or substantially, is no easy task. Creating content for your Buyer Personas and then distributing that content is going to get that new website to work for you.Social Media Marketing (SMM) for small businesses is a popular topic these days. One thing that has leveled the playing field with those larger corporations is the power of social media marketing.
These are indeed powerful tools in your marketing war chest, but like anything else you need a strategy behind it.
Social media signals have become one of the major factors in ranking websites in these search results. What you do with it and how you maintain it is what is important when it comes to brand recognition, generating business, and creating lasting, meaningful relationships that help to grow your business. You can’t have a truly successful Social Media Marketing strategy without having a content marketing strategy. By seeing what those brands post, you can tell what kind of business it is and what they stand for. Keep in mind, even the best of intentions can fail if you don’t have a road map setup first. By putting your small business on social media, you are necessarily competing with the big name brands but getting your brand awareness out in the public and reinforcing it by maintaining the profiles. Determine your goals, find out what type of content your Buyer Personas like to consume and share, and be consistent. Marketing on social media websites involves publishing content to social networking sites like Facebook, Twitter, etc. It is an efficient and cost-effective marketing method to promote your small businesses.According to mediabistro, 73% of small businesses use social media websites as marketing tools. Are you one of them?Here are a few reasons why Social Media Marketing for small businesses is important.

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