Business In The 21st Century

The Pros And Cons Of Social Media with Paul McCarthy

Social media has revolutionized the way that business reach customers, communicate with them, encourage brand loyalty and feed the sales funnel. It has allowed small and medium-sized enterprises to compete with market leaders when it comes to marketing – it is safe to say that it has changed the business landscape. However, does harnessing this channel comes with an attendant risk? As with most things marketing related, there are opportunities and threats. Let’s take a closer look.

Opportunities:

Social media is great for spreading the word about your business -and at the same time, it allows that business to form a rapport with clients or potential customers. The social media encourages business to engage in dialogue with its customers – often in real time. This gives the business an unprecedented opportunity to become leaner, faster and more responsive to the needs of its most important audience.

 

The analytical tools that are today available allow the business to leverage the power of advertising on this social media sites – and know more about the individuals that make up its potential customer base that has ever before been possible. Targeting has never been easier. The core principles of advertising that were established generations ago still are the foundation of a successful campaign – but the method of delivery has changed. Gone are the days when a scattergun approach using above the line methodologies was dominant – focus is now the name of the business game.

However, something else has changed. it is now possible to use software that allows for social listening. Whenever someone using social media asks a question like ‘does anyone know where I can buy XXX’ the astute business can immediately respond with an offer to help meet that need – by communicating directly with the consumer. It takes focus and dedication – but the approach can pay enormous dividends as far as conversion rates are concerned.

Paul McCarthy Explains Social Media Demographics

Watching the social media activity of an identified demographic can also help a business sculpt an effective future strategy, whether it is in terms of products or services. Paying attention to what people liked or disliked can focus the business on the things that really matter.

Threats:

Social media can also provide a business with challenges.

For instance the control over what employees say and don’t say online. Employees are the greatest asset that any business can have. they are spokespeople and the best conveyors of a brand ethos. If they use the correct messaging they can encourage brand loyalty among a target audience. If they don’t – they can quickly become a liability, according to Paul McCarthy.

The opportunity to respond quickly on social media can have its downsides. If a messaging mistake is made it is very difficult to rectify. The viral nature of communication on social media means that messages are disseminated across the network faster than they can be controlled.

Customers now also have the opportunity to post negative reviews – and this cannot be controlled – the concerns can only be addressed.

There are other issues which pose a challenge including competition for share of voice in overcrowded channels and the time-consuming nature of social media management.

It becomes clear that if a business is to thrive in the age of social media then it requires focus and dedication. It requires careful measurement of marketing and communications. The social media is a double-edged sword – care should be taken when handling it.