Why Today’s Small Business Can No Longer Afford to Ignore Social Media; Despite Being The Last Thing Some Owners Have Interest in Entertaining
NEW YORK, NY – As a business owner, especially a small business owner, your time is as valuable as any other commodity; it’s hard to give it up when running the ship means managing your team, meeting with new and current clients, making key decisions for the business as well as providing the ordinary management oversight necessary; all of this surely consumes the majority of your time. Social media, as far as maintaining and updating your businesses profile pages is probably the absolute last thing you have time for, but it’s certainly not something to be overlooked in today’s digital world.
Social media – as in the existence and updating of your social media pages is important as it serves as a simple glimpse into your brand and your company and delivers a perception of what your service is all about. It also helps consumers communicate with your brand, but did you realize it can also be used to attract new business? Well it can, and often does. Today’s consumer is armed with near limitless researching ability when they are considering a brand to work with or a new service provider – and you can bet they are looking things up on the net. Whether it be a Facebook profile to gauge the size of your customer base, reviews or activity, or a Twitter page to measure the interaction your company has with its network of followers; these pages do matter, and not only from a perception aspect.
Social networking pages are also viewed and measured by search engines – some of the best Internet traffic that could be delivered to your business. This is because people who use search engines have serious intent for what they are searching for. They are not just skimming through a newspaper or magazine dilly-dallying; they are typing into a search engine exactly what they are looking for at that moment in time. And these searchers have a serious buying intent – performing what is often referred to as “High Commercial Intent Searches”, from people looking to buy now.
So how do search engines and social media affect the average small business? They serve as “social signals” and help identify brands. Brands speak volumes in today’s competitive search landscape. In fact, then Google CEO Eric Schmidt, as far back as 2008 said that the Internet is a cesspool where false information thrives speaking of Google’s intent to identify true brands over content which is deemed less authoritative.
“The company’s [Google] algorithms are trying to find the most relevant search results, after all, not the sites that best game the system. The fundamental way to increase your rank is to increase your relevance,” he said.Google CEO Eric Schmidt, 2008
Ever since those days in 2008, now more than 10 years have gone by and Google has been working very hard to identify which sites are representative of true brands. One of the many ways Google can do this is by measuring a website or brands related social media pages. In the simplest example, if there were two businesses which are competing and one of those businesses had a thriving social media presence, and the other one, well, had nothing, or social media pages that are dead, vacant, or never updated, which site do you feel Google should prefer or consider to likely have more of a brand value?
It’s a fairly simple science to be honest.
Keeping up-to-date social pages helps your brand value when it comes to search engines and they also provide links back to your website, further indicating that your site is important. If you are not at the very least keeping your social networking pages updated, you might want to delegate it to someone in your office who has the time to update them. Even worse, if you haven’t yet created your social network pages to begin with, you’re far behind the times. You need to either hire someone to get this done, or you need to do it yourself right away. And be sure to keep these pages updated at least weekly to prevent appearing mismanaged or abandoned.
The world is growing more and more socially connected as time goes by. Today’s consumer expects more information about the businesses they intend to hire or purchase from. They also expect a company to be aligned with the times. This means companies have to go to where the consumers are and they must use social media including their own social media pages to effectively communicate their brands message to their customers. And with search engines also using these social signals to measure a companies brand value, no business owner can afford to leave this stone un-turned.