When I started using Facebook I realized that Facebook is not only helping people to connect with each other but also helping small business to connect to their customer. The reason for this realization was the small commercial posts, become bigger with time, which I used to get on my page. From a small time businessman to a big corporate house, from a trader to a retailer, a service provider to a professional, all of them are doing posts to promote their products.
This made me think that “Why Facebook”, what is that feature or benefit which this social media platform is providing to its small or large business users? When I look closely at this platform I noticed its various business friendly features viz. interactive, user friendly, availability of large network, etc. These are some of the many features which are compelling business community towards Facebook to achieve business objectives. For quick reference I am listing some of the good to know & compelling reasons for a business to be using facebook.
Works in Small Budget
Marketing managers face a challenge of working in stretched budgets. Organization expects to gain more in less cost. Facebook provides opportunity to companies to do marketing activities in lesser cost which otherwise would cost lot of money. This makes Facebook an ideal platform for small and large businesses with limited marketing budgets.
Companies can run campaigns on Facebook before committing to bigger ones and can save money and time.
Facebook page is like resume of a candidate. It tells the user about present and past of the organization and to an extent future. Basic page tells about the name, address, contact number, tagline, and products of the company. This helps the company to attract targeted customers to its page.
Going through the page of any small business on Face book gives an enjoyable experience. Page contains not only text but also product pictures, videos, graphics etc. This dynamic nature of contents keeps the user engaged to the page.
More time spent on the page increases chances of the visitor to get converted into customer due to the information displayed on the page in a planned manner.
Pictures, videos etc. can be tagged in the user’s network thus expanding the exposure to maximum members.
Facebook is an ideal social media platform which enables the user to leave comments both positive and negative in nature. Customers can share their experience with the company in real time. Similarly company can reply to the customer and can address his query or complain.
A dietician can share health tips with visitors, a veterinarian can share tips for taking care of pets during winters, summers etc. , thus getting in touch with existing customers and can attract potential customers.
The feedback received by an organization on its page indicates the trend in the market regarding its products and services and gives organization an opportunity to take corrective and hands-on action.
Take Care of Your Customer Online
A telecom company resolving network issues of its customer, an FMCG company replacing damaged product of a customer, a doctor talking to its patient after a surgery are some of the example which shows that customer care is possible not only through call centre but also through social media.
Facebook provides an ideal platform for online customer support because of its interactive nature. In fact companies have started including Facebook in their customer care strategies and plans.
I recently visited Facebook page of TATA DOCOM and found that company is using it extensively to interact with customers and resolving their complaints online
Remember a satisfied customer can bring ten customers with him without an additional cost.
“Likes” a new marketing mantra
Have you ever pressed “Like” button on profile page of a company? It gives product, services, company information and updates in the form of Posts from the company on daily basis without fail. All my friends in my network became a silent spectator of these posts.
The point I am trying to make here is that Facebook is an effective tool of multi level marketing. It spreads information, word of mouth in the network like multi level marketing company.
This creates brand awareness among the network and gives opportunity to the network to leave positive messages, comments on these posts thus creating a brand awareness exercise.
Increases traffic on website
Facebook users who come through these posts on their page are likely to go to the website. These posts or profile page can contain a link which helps these users to guide to the website. A strong marketing message or smartly designed landing page can help these visitors to become the customer of the company.
This additional traffic on website can give additional customers to the company.
Remember, more visitors lead to more leads and more customers.
Target Specific Customers
Have you ever thought that “why you see advertisements of your interests on your face book page”?
Simple answer to this question is that Facbook maintains information of its members in its database including age, interests, location, hobbies etc. This information is available at a price. Marketers and companies use this information to target specific group of customers for their products and services.
For example a music label company can get the information that how many users have specified music as their interest. New music labels, albums can be shown to these customers in form of posts on their page.
Ignorance of Social Media tool such as Facebook as a marketing medium is not recommended today because of the power it gives to the business. Companies not only get new customers but also retain its existing customers through this powerful medium for which otherwise these companies struggle for. I agree that Facebook cannot work in seclusion, it should be made part of the over all marketing campaign because of the given benefits and should not be ignored.