If you still thinking that Facebook, Twitter. Google+ and other social medias are for kids and teenagers, then change your mind quickly. Social media is a great way to drive repeat business and to attract new customers.

“According to Constant Contact’s 2011 Small Business Attitudes & Outlook Survey, 73% of small businesses & organizations have started using social media marketing and 62% of those not using it expect to start marketing through social media within the next 12 months.”

Social Media has changed the way people connect, discover, and share information. But let’s skip the jargon. Here’s what you need to know:

Social media is the technology that connects people—whether it’s to share content or just to chat.

Social networks, like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Pinterest are the places where social interactions happen (discovering & sharing).

Social media marketing is the way to use that technology to build relationships, drive repeat business. and attract new customers through friends sharing with friends.

Sound familiar? That’s because social media marketing is really just word-of-mouth powered by technology.

“75% of people are somewhat or highly likely to share content they like online with friends, co-workers or family—49% do this at least weekly.

Source: Chadwick Martin Bailey Consumer Pulse 2010 (n= 1504)”

It’s important that you set goals and understand what you want to achieve from your social media marketing efforts.

Here are some of the main ways you can use social media to have a big impact on your business:

Spread the Word. Show customers and prospects who you are and what you can do for them. It’s great for brand awareness!

Drive Sales. Give customers offers that are so good they’ll share them with their friends. Your promotions can go viral!

Provide Great Customer Service. Listen and respond to what your customers are saying about you and to you. It’s a wonderful feedback loop!

Keep Your Customers Coming Back. Build deeper relationships so customers will get to know, like, and trust you more.

Because social media is all about discovering and sharing cool stuff, every interaction you have through social media has the potential to reach many new people.

That’s awesome because social media will ultimately help to spread your message and attract new audiences.

The benefits of social media are many, but they include:

Improved social signals (which are a factor in the search ranking algorithm).
Company branding
Improved brand awareness
Word-of-mouth advertising
Increased customer loyalty and trust
Improved audience reach and influence

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