For companies looking to engage in social media, there are a lot of unanswered questions as to the return on investment (ROI) they might expect to see. Unfortunately there isn’t any simple answer that I can put forward. But what I can guarantee is that you will see indirect non-cashflow gains to your business.
I’ve compiled a quick list of indirect bonuses. The extent to which your brand succeeds with each depends on your strategy and involvement. So what is there to gain?
1: A Personality
Social media gives a voice to the brand, and with a voice comes a personality. Customers enjoy having a personal connection with a brand. It gives them a friendship they can base their correspondence on and helps foster brand loyalty.
2: A Fan Club
Did you know your business has fans? If you’re not in social media it’s very hard to understand and engage the masses of brand advocates you have at your disposal. Think of social media as being a modern version of your traditional loyalty database… Except this database is full of customers that are keen to frequently spread the word about your brand given the right pre-cursors.
3: Brand Exposure
Talking about interesting stuff to interesting people? Your message will spread through several degrees of separation and before you know it, you’ve started to get quite a wide base of exposure.
4: Brand Association
If you present your brand as the market leader in your industry, existing and potential customers will see this and form the association that there is no going past your brand. Next time they require a product or service that you offer, they will instantly think of you. If you plant the seed and nurture accordingly, you will eventually see the fruits of your labour.
5: Quality Products or Services
After engaging with the community surrounding your brand for a while you will start to discover areas where your product or service is not matching customer expectations. These will be the areas where you have to exact damage control. Now is your perfect chance to provide a better quality experience.
My perfect example for all of these 5 indirect gains is Giapo’s Genuine Italian Gelato shop in Queen St, Auckland. I personally haven’t tried their product… but I definitely want to!! Especially after seeing all of the positive conversation around the brand. If all of these people I know love the brand personality, the product, the service, the store, I’m sure I will too. The next time I think about getting gelato in Auckland, the first brand into my mind will be Giapo.
It’s not all about who your current customers are, it’s who they could be that counts.