The “social” in social media implies that it’s mostly the kind of platform that’s about interaction with peers, but over the last few years it’s proved to be more than that. It’s transformed the way we consume news, video and photos. It’s also revolutionized our personal, professional and business connections.
That’s certainly been the case for Imaginovation. Social media has deepened our ability to interact with our community, to understand our customers and so much more. Here are six ways that social media has helped our business.
Conduct industry research
Though social media is playtime for laypeople, for businesses it can be so much more. Social media allows us to learn about our industry, what’s trending and what’s working. That kind of insight is invaluable to any business.
At Imaginovation, we keep an eye on Twitter hashtags like #webddev, #webdesign, and #mobile so that we’re always on top of what’s new and what’s next. Being in an industry that’s constantly changing, it’s impossible to overestimate the importance of knowing what’s new and what’s next.
Social media allows us to interact and connect with our community. In the last year, we’ve partnered with the local SPCA through social media as well as other local businesses.
Though we tend to think of social media as a worldwide phenomenon, it’s simultaneously a local medium. People still most often use it to connect with people that they know in real life. That means that local causes and communities greatly benefit from online partnerships. The more that we’re able to work with social media to create local community right here in our area, the better.
Learn what our customers want
How do you know that your customers want? How do you know what they need? How do you know where you begin? Social media can and does answer all of those questions. Just as it’s possible to use social media to follow industry trends, it’s also possible to use social media to follow the trends that your customers are following.
At Imaginovation, we’ve found that customer research is huge for us. It’s been something that’s allowed us to change the direction of our business at times, focusing on different products or services than we otherwise might have. Social media is a powerful tool for our customer research.
Build customer service skills
Social media interaction is instant and constant. In order to be successful as a business, responsiveness is a key. Every social media interaction is public. Those Facebook comments are right out there for the world to see and they allow businesses to hone customer service skills in a very public forum. Social media forces businesses to think about customer service, or else pay the consequences in potential ill will from a wider audience who’s always watching.
Connect with people anywhere
Part of the magic of social media is its hybrid nature. It’s both close by and also wide ranging. Social media allows us to connect with a whole world of people who are otherwise beyond our sphere of influence. That can mean anything from connecting with a customer on Facebook in a far flung location who otherwise would never have known about your business, to having your company image improved through a retweet by a high level influencer.
There are no boundaries on social media. The walls are completely gone between different sections of society, between businesses and customers. That’s an area that we’ve certainly taken advantage of, and it’s one of the things that makes social media so fantastic for us as a business. Demographics don’t matter on social media – it’s a great equalizer and that’s good for business!
Share our personality and passions
Rather than being a faceless corporate entity, social media has allowed Imaginovation to show our current and future clients our personality and passion. For example, through Facebook Live we’ve been able to showcase our personalities, rather than being a just a feed of text, links and images.
That personal touch matters. In the world of technology, it can be incredibly easy to lose that human connection. That’s why it’s so critically important for businesses to show that there are real people at your company. At Imaginovation, we’re blessed with a staff that’s funny and charming, bold and engaging. We don’t have to keep them locked away! Thanks to social media, we’re able to showcase who we are through livestreaming. Though this is definitely the newest facet of social media connection, livestreaming is the most humanizing and connecting thus far. The ability to connect with our audience in the moment is palpable and powerful.
Whatever form social media might take on in the years to come, what’s certain is that it’s a concept and a connection that’s not going anywhere. At Imaginovation, we’ve embraced it and found that what we give to social media gives back to us tenfold. How has social media helped your business? Tell us in the comments here OR, even better, tell us on Facebook or Twitter.