Importance of Technology and Social Media for Business
Technology has been a driving force for businesses around the world for decades. When it comes to business, improvements in technology seek to make it easier for the business owners to reach the target consumer and make profits. A recent technological innovation, social media, has radically transformed how businesses engage with customers. The purpose of this paper is to demonstrate the importance of technology, especially social media, to businesses and their overall operations.
Technology especially social media has revolutionized the competitiveness of businesses. Some of the most successful businesses in the world presently were small startups that used technology to gain a competitive edge. Social media has been at the forefront of granting such businesses their competitive advantage. Instead of spending millions placing ads on newspapers and TV, businesses can create viral content that encourages potential consumers to share and like on social media platforms (Hendricks, 2014). Once a product or a company has gone viral then it is only natural for the consumers to gravitate towards it to learn more and eventually buy the product the company is selling.
Brand recognition and loyalty are also easier to attain through social media. Customers can easily reach out to businesses through social media platforms. Businesses can interact with existing customers and promote their products establishing a long-lasting relationship. When businesses create engaging content on these platforms, customers interact and begin to recognize the company. They will also spread the content to other social media users (Kietzmann, Hermkens, McCarthy, & Silvestre, 2011). The increased recognition will definitely result in more sales for the company, increased customer retention as well as an increase in brand royalty.
Social media is also crucial as it helps businesses understand what the consumers need. Social media platforms are optimized in such a manner that the adverts a user will see are based on his/her tastes, needs and preferences. For a business to succeed in this age of social media it will need to create products that meet these particular needs (Hendricks, 2014). In addition, it will have to advertise said product in a way that the social media user feels that he/she has finally found what they are looking for. Businesses now have to place value to customers before profits in order to optimize their selling capability as well as guaranteeing brand loyalty.
Social media has the capability of generating an exponential amount of data about social media users. Businesses rely heavily on this data to make business decisions that can give them a competitive advantage. Businesses are able to gauge customer sentiment about their products, as well as receive feedback on how to improve said products (Copp, 2016). The data gathered from social media platforms can also be useful in identifying new trends and customer demands and using this information for the benefit of the company involved.
Another crucial importance of social media to businesses is the fact that these platforms can be used to enrich the customer’s experience. Most customers around the world expect that the business they are purchasing goods from will have a social media page. More than 67% of customers globally visit business’ social media pages for customer service. They expect that their queries will be answered as soon as possible and that the company has 24/7 support (Safko, 2010; Copp 2016). Companies that meet these demands often build a good reputation for themselves for having excellent customer services. In addition, such companies also realize higher annual financial gains than those companies that do not have a social media page.
Copp, E. (2016, Aug 17). 10 Benefits of Social Media for Business. Retrieved on 24/11/2016 from https://blog.hootsuite.com/social-media-for-business/
Hendricks, D. (2014, Feb 25). Three Ways Social Media is Driving a Business Revolution. Forbes. Retrieved on 24/11/2016 from http://www.forbes.com/sites/drewhendricks/2014/02/25/3-ways-social-media-is-driving-a-business-revolution/#61afb57562c8
Kietzmann, J.H., Hermkens, K., McCarthy, I.P., and Silvestre, B.S. (2011). Social media? Get serious! Understanding the functional building blocks of social media. Business Horizons, 54 (3): 241-251.
Safko, L. (2010). The social media bible: tactics, tools, and strategies for business success. John Wiley & Sons.