What Is Social Media Marketing and What Could It Do For Me?

Weighing the pros and cons of social media marketing can help you decide if this is the right move for your business.

As a business owner, social media has the potential to be your greatest marketing tool. Over the years, social media has grown and transformed from a way to socialize with friends and family to a way to showcase and sell your products and services. Like any other marketing tool, there are pros and cons of social media marketing.

One pro of social media marketing, or SMM, is that it gives you the power to control your spend based on your means and your intended results. All social media channels, such as Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and YouTube are free to sign up. It does not cost anything to have a profile and post about your brand or business. When you are ready to put money behind your page, you have the option to select how much you want to spend and how long you want your ad to run over a course of time.

Another pro of social media marketing is that it expands your reach farther than traditional advertising such as newspaper ads, commercials, etc. You also have the ability to target users based on their demographics, interests and more. Of the 7.2 billion people on earth, 3 billion have Internet access; 2.1 billion are active on social media; and 1.7 billion use social networks from a mobile device, according to Link Humans. Social media has become a quite the credible marketing tool to consumers as well. Consumers say that social media plays almost as big a role in purchasing decisions, as does television, according to Ad Age.

The cons of social media marketing should also be taken into account when deciding if SMM is right for your brand or business. One of the first cons of social media marketing that you may notice is that it can be very time consuming at first. To achieve results, you have to put time into perfecting your profile, updating your profile, posting on a consistent basis, creating ads and more.

Another con of social media marketing is that you lose the ability to control what others are saying about your brand. Social media gives consumers the chance to voice their opinion about your brand or if they have had a negative experience with your business. However, don’t let this deter you, as this is your opportunity to listen to what your customers are saying and respond, while making improvements if needed.

According to Social Media Examiner, 96% of small business owners/marketers use social media marketing, and 92% of those agree or strongly agree with the phrase, “Social media marketing is important for my business.”  Weigh the pros and cons and decide if SMM is right for your business.
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