Recently, I had a chance to hear Randy Stockten, CEO of One Click Ventures, talk about social media and on line retail.  He gave several compelling reasons why social media needs to be an integral part of an online marketing plan for retail sites, but as I read my notes, I realized most of the reasons applied equally well to all small business owners.

Why Small Business Owners Need Social Media

  • Customer Service – Randy suggested the introduction of social media allows companies to address issues quickly, reducing call and email volume, while building robust and relevant FAQ’s.  I think it also demonstrates you really are a customer focused company.
  • Content – Adding social media provides a wealth rich content  provided by your customers. From product reviews and suggestions, to examples of how your product can be used, user generated content will have an authentic and impartial perspective, which will appeal to other potential customers.
  • SEO – Social media increases inbound links, directs influence, and impacts real time search.   Active social media builds brands, by expanding the base of potential customers.
  • Humanization – Let’s face it, people do business with people.  While the internet is growing, there is also a resurgence of street markets – Why?  People want to do business with people.  Social media humanizes companies, creating the feeling you are doing business with people, not impersonal organizations.
While critical for online retailers, I think every small business owner can benefit from social media.  If you need help getting started, Roundpeg, an Indianapolis social media firm can help.