Social media has gotten a bad rap in recent years. From exposing kids to inappropriate material to creating unhealthy addictions in adults, when you hear those two words, it’s often associated with negative. However, as someone in the online/writing industry (whose craft and success largely depends on the internet and subsequent apps), I beg to differ. While I can fully acknowledge some of the drawbacks of social media, I believe it’s the biggest marketing asset.
Social media can connect you with people all over the world. With a simple browser search you can find, learn about, and engage with people and their brands, companies, and ideas. And people can find you. You can create an identity online that supports your venture and goals. Plus, in bridging the gap between physical and virtual connection, you can build a community.
Though some people argue that the internet in general has become too addictive, overwhelming, or comparison-focused, I think that social media should be your biggest marketing asset. Here’s why:
1. Social media allows for creative freedom.
As a writer, what I love the most about social media is the creative freedom it brings me. I started writing on my blog almost ten years ago. Though this was, and always will be a place where I pour my heart, my social media pages have branched into specific avenues of expression.
For example, on Instagram I can share short quotes, images with longer captions, and graphics. This is what I consider the ‘best of the best’ from my blog—and perfect for people to quick see, engage with, and move on. Facebook, on the other hand, is focused on excerpts. Twitter is short segments with links to engage. Each page has something different to offer and taps into a different audience. This creative freedom is necessary for building my brand and showing people who I truly am.
2. You tap into an entirely new audience.
Your online community will build and grow as your social media does—naturally! This allows you to reach beyond your local area and into people from all over the world!
3. You can create a virtual space for your brand or business.
If you have a physical location for your business, creating an online ‘space’ is great to attract customers that are not in your area. Think about how many people find what they want by searching ‘pizza near me’ and clicking on the top place in the results!? Having an online presence will not only legitimize you, but bring people to your spaces (in-person and online).
If you don’t have a physical location, an online presence is even more imperative! You have to use your website and social media to show people who you are, what you offer, and why they should care. Your success depends on it!
4. Your advertisements can be seamless.
If you use social media to promote your business/brand, your advertising can be seamless. All efforts will be focused on pulling in traffic and engaging with potential consumers. You can use the same graphics/templates you’ve made for your physical marketing as your online marketing—so truly this is even easier than you think!
5. The potential for growth is exponential.
Social media is only growing. As you use different sites to promote yourself, you’ll create new networking opportunities, build new relationships, and expand.
6. People are drawn to convenience.
It’s true—people love the ease of clicking and finding exactly what they want when they want it. Embrace this! Having an online presence with a focus on social media, allows people to see your content quicker, and engage more. This alone will attract them and keep them coming back.
7. There is value in the connections + relationships you build online.
My career is a testament to the fact that you can foster incredible relationships online. Some of my followers have become people I care for deeply and talk to almost every day. The conversations I’ve had with strangers have truly shaped my goals and focus! Though the internet can feel impersonal at times, there is community within social media.