Arnie Kuenn answers: “Is social media a waste of company time?”
If you’ve got a question about link building, content, social media, SEO or other Internet marketing topics, just post it on the Vertical Measures Facebook page, or tweet it to us with the hashtag #VMQA.
Hi, I’m Arnie Kuenn with Vertical Measures. Today’s question is: Is social media a waste of company time?
Well, it certainly depends on your industry, your commitment, and your approach. And I would say it is a waste of time if: one, you’re not committed and you don’t set aside the time to manage it properly; two, if you don’t follow social media best practices; and three, if you do not respond to people who are trying to interact with you, good or bad.
But I’ll give you three good reasons why it is not a waste of time. One is it can certainly help with search engine optimization. As your content or your web pages are being talked about, shared, liked, voted up on different social media platforms, like Twitter, Facebook, Google+, and even Pinterest, the search engines are picking up those signals.
So they’re trying to determine if this maybe is a good piece of content with a lot of authority, because authority-type people are sharing it, or just lots of people in general are sharing it. Or is it just sitting there dull and not being talked about at all? Those are all signals to the search engines. So, if you’ve got great content that you’ve produced that people are out there sharing and talking about, odds are it’s going to rank really well in the search engines as well.
So, the second reason is it can certainly help with your customer service, right? Your customers, they’re out there talking about you, whether you like it or not, or whether you know it or not. They are talking, and social media gives you a chance to interact with them. Positive situations can certainly help reinforce your brand, but negative comments — it gives you a chance to address those. They’re happening, so you might as well work hard at getting in control of that conversation and maybe correcting those issues and publicizing it through social media channels.
The third thing is it can actually bring in business. All of these platforms can be great marketing tools, but do they actually give you a good ROI? ROI generally means leads or business of some type.
I’ll give you three examples, local examples here in Arizona, where it’s absolutely true. There’s a restaurant just within a couple of miles of my house, and people at our office have talked about, but I still haven’t gone to after it’s been open for two or three years. But I did follow them on Facebook, and I’ve seen lots of great interactions with their customers. They post their meals. It looks pretty darn inviting. So finally, on a Friday after work, we went up there, and it was a great experience, and of course, I talked about it on Facebook. So right there, small meal, but they did get business directly as a result of their social media marketing.
Another one is a boutique hotel in the middle of Arizona up in the mountains called the Motor Lodge. I talk a lot about them in my presentations, going into some detail about how they use social media. But they primarily use Facebook as their marketing tool, and they have one of the highest occupancy rates in the country based on the backs of marketing on Facebook.
If you go check them out, check out the Motor Lodge on Facebook. You’ll see how they do it. They talk about events in their area. They talk about their hotel, but always in a friendly and very engaging way, and they get a lot of engagement in Facebook. You’ll see it.
Then, lastly is us, Vertical Measures. We’ve actually gotten between $50,000 and $100,000 in business directly as a result of Twitter. I know people who would find that really, really hard to believe because of how Twitter is. It’s so short, and so on and so forth. But we have built relationships and people have gotten to know us and then contacted us directly as a result of us marketing and posting on Twitter, and then signed contracts and done business with us.
So that’s a pretty quick overview of how social media can help a business or almost any organization. If you’ve got some comments or maybe more success stories that you’d like to talk about using social media, please leave them in the comments below. We’ll be happy to post them.
This entry was posted on Wednesday, August 22nd, 2012 at 4:30 am and is filed under Social Media. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.