With an ever-increasing user base, social media platforms offer incredible opportunities for brands to reach, engage, and convert their audience. We outline 12 key benefits of social media that can help your achieve your marketing goals in 2024.
1. Reach A Global Audience
Social media platforms provide access to a vast, global audience. There are a staggering 5+ billion users as of 2024, projected to grow to 5.9 billion by 2027. That means one in every three people globally is active on social media!
By leveraging social media platforms like Facebook, which has 3 billion monthly active users, or Instagram with 2 billion, you can connect with a massive audience worldwide – far greater than the reach of traditional media.
For instance, an artisan coffee supplier based in Berlin can showcase its unique brews on Instagram to coffee enthusiasts around the globe. By engaging with coffee communities, the business can build a global brand presence and sell products online, such as coffee bags, merchandise and equipment.
2. Pinpoint Your Exact Target Market
Social media platforms have an extensive amount of data on their users. This allows businesses to target their ads with incredible precision. Whether it's 18-24 year old male cat lovers in Canada or middle-aged fitness enthusiasts in Brazil, social media ad platforms make it simple to reach your specific target audience.
For example, a pet store could use the Facebook Ad Platform to reach pet owners interested in organic pet food, meaning their ads are only shown to potential customers most likely to purchase their product.
3. Optimize Ad Spend with Data Tracking
The ability to track every interaction on social media means you can better optimize ad spend. Platforms provide hundreds of metrics on how users interact with your content – from video views to link clicks.
Additionally, with tools like tracking pixels and conversion APIs, businesses can track user actions across the web, gaining a comprehensive understanding of their customer journey.
A clothing brand, for instance, can use Instagram's tracking tools to see not only how many users viewed their ad but also how many proceeded to purchase on their website. This data helps in fine-tuning ad strategies to maximize ROI.
4. Grow Organically
Social media is not just about paid advertising – free ‘organic’ growth is still a viable strategy. Facebook's organic reach may be only 2%, but sharing content that engages your audience content can significantly increase this number. When users interact with a post, social media algorithms often boost its visibility, potentially leading to viral content. It’s the social media platform’s way of saying ‘thank you’ for creating content that their users enjoy.
Let’s say you’re a small fitness brand that regularly posts content on TikTok that users love, such as workout routines and healthy eating tips. By consistently providing valuable content and focusing on building a community, your account will experience higher engagement, leading to an increased organic reach – without spending on ads.
5. Engage Directly with Your Audience
Unlike traditional broadcast media, social media allows you to have a two-way conversation. You can not only share content that positions you as the expert in your field but also interact directly with your audience. This builds stronger, more personal relationships, higher trust and usually more sales.
It’s also a great way to get direct feedback from your audience. You’ll find that people love to share their thoughts on your brand or product and hopefully invite new prospects into the conversation.
A local bookstore using X (Twitter) to discuss favorite books with its followers is a great example. They could create polls, respond to comments, and share book recommendations, making their brand more relatable and building a loyal community.
6. Increase Brand Awareness
Social media plays an essential role in increasing brand awareness, particularly for brands that are not yet well-known enough to be searched for. Sharing content helps introduce and nurture brands in the minds of potential customers.
Brand awareness on social media is comparatively cheaper than other media formats, and when combined with the ability to pinpoint your target audience, it makes it a powerful channel to reach a large audience.
Brands can also use creators and influencers to help spread the word about their products or services. A new eco-friendly cleaning product company could use an environment-focused creator to develop a series of short-form videos that the brand could share on YouTube Shorts. This content could also be used as a paid ad to reach a wider group of people.
7. Drive Website Traffic
Social media is one of the top sources of website traffic on the planet. Links in Instagram bios, links in YouTube video descriptions, swipe-up links in Instagram Stories, buttons on Facebook ads – there are so many different ways in which social media can be used to drive users to your website or landing pages.
For example, an online course provider could share snippets of their courses on LinkedIn with links leading to the landing page that promotes the full course. This ‘sneak peak’ of the course would not only provide lots of value, delivering higher organic reach by the algorithm, but it would also encourage people to visit their site for more information.
8. Establish Industry Authority
Social media provides an unparalleled platform for establishing yourself as an authority in your industry. Regularly sharing knowledgeable content, while simultaneously showing your expertise, positions your personal and/or company brand as the go-to source in your field.
For example, an IT consultant could share insightful articles and tips for overcoming systems integration problems. This content will demonstrate their knowledge of the topics and attract more followers who want to receive similar content. As long as the content is delivered frequently and consistently, the IT consultant will be top of mind when someone needs their services.
9. Lift Conversion Rates
Most people will go through a journey of discovery, engagement, and trust before deciding to purchase from you. Sharing social media content allows you to have multiple touchpoints with your target audience, building trust and familiarity with your brand, and ‘warming up’ the prospects. This means there’s a greater chance of them converting when they eventually leave social media to discover more about your product, service or message.
Consider a boutique clothing brand that uses TikTok to showcase its products. Over time, followers who regularly see and engage with the brand's videos are more likely to convert into customers. The higher the frequency of seeing your content, the more they’re interested, and the more likely they are to convert.
10. Improve Customer Service
Social media has transformed customer service by providing immediate platforms for communication. Customers expect quick responses to inquiries and complaints, and social media delivers this in real time.
People also often form a strong opinion of a brand based on the quality of customer service they provide. For example, a recruitment company could use X/Twitter to solve customer problems. This publicly displays the brand's commitment to customer service and also how responsive they are.
11. Boost Search Engine Rankings
High engagement rates on social media indicate to search engines that your blog content is valuable, potentially boosting your content’s rank in search results. Google and other search engines also know when people click through to your blog and how long they spend on the page, which can further improve your visibility in search engines.
12. Collect Reviews, UGC and Insights
Social media is an easy way to collect customer reviews and insights, whether publicly or privately in a DM. Customers can share their experiences, providing you with valuable feedback on your product, service or message.
Similarly, social media is an excellent way to collect user-generated content (UGC). Whether that’s a photo of someone using your product, a video showing tips on how to use it better, or a screenshot of a review, UGC is great ‘social proof’.
Let’s say you’re a skincare brand. You could actively encourage your customers to post their product experiences on Instagram. You can incentivize them to do so by offering rewards or committing to share their UGC on your social media accounts, driving awareness and traffic to the creator’s own social media profile. These authentic testimonials increase trust in the eyes of other potential customers of the brand and also provide you with a rich source of free content.
The 12 benefits outlined above show the amazing potential of social media marketing in helping you grow your organisation. From reaching a global audience to collecting valuable customer feedback, social media offers diverse and powerful tools for businesses to thrive in 2024.
Whether you're a startup looking to establish your brand or an established global brand aiming to expand your reach, social media is a powerful asset. It's time to leverage these benefits to expand your online presence, build an engaged online community and grow your sales.