Social Media Management
It seems hard to believe, but there once was a time in the not-too-distant past when social media was merely a way for college kids to chat. Long before the world fell in love with sites like Instagram, Pinterest, Twitter and YouTube, Facebook (or TheFacebook as it was known then) was making waves across American college campuses. In fact, it wasn’t until late 2006 that the site allowed non-college students over the age of 13 to register and create a profile.
Soon after Facebook opened the gates, the general public joined in droves — and so did strategic marketers looking for new ways to reach target audiences. Within a year, more than 100,000 pages had been created on Facebook by brands with the intention of promoting themselves. Today, that number exceeds more than 60 million active business pages. But Facebook is just one channel that brands are leveraging as part of a strategy around social media management.
What is social media management?
Social media management is the term used for maintaining a presence across various social media platforms, including engaging in monitoring and conversation with others. These online interactions come courtesy of channels like the aforementioned Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, Twitter, and YouTube, but also more niche sites like LinkedIn and Yelp.
In the early stages of social media management, most brands’ strategies included deluging fans and followers with a barrage of posts every day. That approach quickly proved bothersome, and a more thoughtful method began to take shape. Maybe more than anything, brands started to realize that social media offered up a 24/7 soundboard where they could conduct two-way dialogue with customers and potential customers.
Why is social media management important to your business?
At this point, there’s a good chance your brand is already on social media, so you at least understand the value. But let’s talk about why social media management is an activity worth investing your time into. For one, your customers are already there. Remember how we talked about Facebook’s origin as a platform for college kids? That couldn’t be further from the truth today. In fact, users 65 and older are the fastest-growing group on Facebook. When people say everybody and their grandmother is on Facebook, they aren’t kidding!
One of the other big advantages of social media management is that the platforms are generally free to use. Now, the caveat to that statement is most brands realize that in order to gain real traction with attracting new customers, spending money on social media advertising is essential. The good news is that most social media channels offer flexible and cost-affordable advertising options that provide you with ample opportunities to target your next customer.
Whether you spend money on social media or not, the channels empower brands to provide good customer service. Customers will often take to Twitter or Facebook instead of making a phone call, so a huge component of social media management is not only listening to what your customers have to say but also working to fix the problem.