Embracing Social Media Marketing

A significant 90% of brands feel that social media plays a crucial role in their business, says the 2016 Social Media Marketing Industry report. Not only this, 68% analyze their social media activities to make the most out of it.

If implemented accurately, social media marketing can bring outstanding success to your business. The two most important benefits of this technique are growing exposure and increasing traffic. 89% of all marketers indicated that their social media attempts have generated lot of exposure and traffic.

AN ESSENTIAL PART OF THE MODERN MARKETING MIX

Even though the importance of social media in the business world is unquestionable, brands are still not making the most of it. Nowadays, companies which lack social profiles on platforms like Facebook, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Tumblr, and many more, could be missing out on something big strategically.

Let’s look at some of the advantages:

Branding: Social profiles give brands a personality and this in turn helps in brand building. The characteristics of the brand and how the profile looks make your profile unique.

Advertising: If you want to get noticed among the millions on the “www” world, then you need to take massive efforts on enhancing your online presence. This will give you an opportunity to advertise your products and services.

Mobile: Most of the social activity is done through a mobile device. Plan you strategy accordingly. Your website may be viewed through a mobile device so ensure its compatibility.

Share content faster: You can use social media for sharing content about your products and services. If your content is interesting, it will go viral in a very short span of time.

Engagement: Social media gives brands opportunities to interact freely and such positive engagement plays a major role in building customer base and improved reputation.

Driving Traffic: When it comes to driving traffic through referrals, social media marketing can prove to be a boon. And this is where the importance of online presence comes into picture.

Respond to problems: Studies have proved that customers appreciate brands that respond to complaints promptly. Being on social media, you can get instant feedback and also handle any problem or controversial situation and take quick steps to resolve them.

Low marketing costs: Social media marketing is one of the most affordable ways to grow your business rapidly, without a huge money and time commitment.

Showcase new products: Introducing or launching new products is much cheaper and comparatively easier on social media.

Employee engagement: Like your customers, your employees too have many connections on social media. You can share employee accomplishments and other activities about your brand. This will surely have a positive impact, and can make your employees, your biggest group of brand advocates.

Customer insight: Social media tools can be used to analyze customers and their purchasing behavior. Brands can plan their promotional strategies accordingly.

CONCLUSION

The whole marketing scenario has changed with the introduction of Social Media. It’s being vigorously used for personal reasons but today if you are not using it for business, you’re already behind.

So are you ready to zoom ahead of your competitors in the sphere of social media?

Corporate Transparency – a Key to more Traffic

Do you know one straightforward and undemanding way you can generate more traffic? It’s actually by being transparent.

Adopting a more transparent approach can bring enormous benefits in terms of employee engagement and productivity. With this, you’ll be able to convert more of your visitors into customers. Further, it positions you in such a way that you can efficiently respond to problems and controversies if any arise.

Advantages

1) Improved customer service
A car manufacturer that tries to hide a product defect may come across to consumers as being sneaky and dishonest. But if a manufacturer publicly admits a defect and takes steps to repair it, he is more likely to retain or even attract customers through his forthright behavior.

2) Positive Perception
A transparent approach in business shows that you have nothing to hide. Being honest rather than fiddling with corporate information, demonstrates truthfulness.

3) Workforce Involvement
Employees who are not aware of what’s going on in your business may participate in spreading gossip. An open and honest communication with them can help in building loyalty and a higher degree of job satisfaction when they feel as trusted members and not just workers.

4) Status Management
Improved transparency also has a very good impact on company’s reputation, which in turn leads to improved trust from employees as well as customers, allowing you to manage even the most challenging situations smoothly.

Some instances

Transparency begins with knowing your customers and requires having an engaging relationship with your community of customers. Interestingly, many brands are increasingly turning to this approach.

Let’s look at some of the brands that share their numbers to their benefit:

  • McDonalds Canada

With their “Our Food. Your Questions.” digital platform, consumers were encouraged to ask questions and McDonalds promised to step up and provide clear and concise answers.

  • HCL Technologies

Vineet Nayar, VC and Joint MD of this organization, has been one of the most outspoken advocates of this approach. He had been quoted as saying, “all HCL’s financial information is on the company’s internal Web. We put all the dirty linen on the table, and answer everyone’s questions.

  • Moz

A great example of transparency is Moz. Every year, they reveal their revenue numbers, whether they have had a great year or a bad one, they are transparent.

  • Buffer

When Buffer suffered a security breach in October 2013, they avoided the blame game and owned up to the problem. They immediately took to every communication channel they had, apologized for the inconvenience. Not only this, they chose to publish a blog post, which was updated ten times with the ongoing status of the problem and their efforts to make things right.

So it can be seen that these brands don’t just discuss the numbers, but also what went on behind to achieve them. It demonstrates their willingness to stand up and take responsibility for both success and failure.

Some Disadvantages

Transparency has distinct advantages but sometimes this may put business growth and financial plans at risk.

1) Timing
Whenever there is any scandal, it’s better to get to the bottom of it and ensure that your customers know what all efforts you are taking to resolve it. The more you keep them hanging, the more they are likely to think the worst.

2) Competition
This approach can put the brand at competitive disadvantage. So the amount of information and the timing can be filtered to lessen the potentially damaging consequences, provided the information released has the planned effect.

3) Sensitive information
If a disgruntled employee ever wanted to take vengeance, he or she could easily hand over that information to competitors.

Conclusion

So it’s for the brands to thoughtfully weigh both the advantages and disadvantages before going ahead.

Today when customers have more information than ever before, available at their fingertips, brands that are transparent are more likely to win. It’s just a matter of time before your opponent knows what you already know. So why not just put it all out there and gain traffic out of it?

 

Let’s be Water Smart!

Have you ever given it a thought about how much water you use at work? Did you know that a typical office uses around 50 litres of water per full-time employee each day? Shocked?

A recent study gives a breakdown of water usage in offices:

Cleaning 1%
Canteen/kitchen 9%
Washing 27%
Urinal Flushing 20%
Toilet Flushing 43%

Water is a priceless resource, yet it is very often taken for granted. As the effects of climate change are becoming clear, it is even more critical to look at our water use and see what we can do to save water.

Many organisations use much more water than they actually need, leading to higher than needed expenses and negative environmental impacts. Often measures can be taken that cost little or nothing to implement, but can result in substantial water saving.

How to do it?

It is obvious that every business has different water needs – from a small-scale home-based business to a large manufacturing plant, but almost all could benefit from cutting water utilization. Below are some tips which can help in saving this valuable resource:

  1. Create a suggestion and incentive system at your workplace to recognize water-saving ideas.
  2. Publish your organization’s monthly water usage to show how things are progressing toward water-saving goals.
  3. Have maintenance personnel regularly check your office for leaks, drips and other water wastage.
  4. Create a goal of how much water your company can save and plan a celebration once that goal is met.
  5. Ask employees for suggestions on saving water and give prizes for the best ideas.
  6. Write articles on your employee website that highlight water-saving ideas and share case studies about other success stories.
  7. Wash company vehicles as needed rather than on a schedule. Stretch out the time in between washes.
  8. When ice cubes are left from your drink, don’t throw them out; pour them on a plant.
  9. Replace urinals with low-volume models. Urinals can use as much as 5 gallons per flush, while low-volume urinals use only 1 gallon per flush.
  10. Taps left running can waste large volumes of water. In washrooms consider replacing conventional screw taps with self close taps that close automatically after a preset period.
  11. Carrying out a simple “water audit” can be very beneficial, which will allow you to assess your plumbing/fittings for water efficiencies

Once you have identified the instances where water efficiencies can be made, you should build up an action plan, which includes prioritising work, assigning responsibilities and setting timeframes for completion. It is also important to set targets for further improvements. Always remember that this plan is a working document and should be reconsidered regularly.

Do More, Use Less

To reduce water consumption, a change in outlook is necessary. If you commit just a little extra effort every day, you alone can make a difference. None of the above tips may seem like they would have a huge effect on the conservation plan, but if enforced and sustained, these changes, over time will definitely make a difference.

New technologies that use less water are becoming more important than ever, but our common sense and consciousness that our planet cannot supply water forever will ensure that future generations will enjoy the benefits of abundant fresh water because of the steps that we take now.