The “Pros” and the “Cons”umers

FINAL blog picture

Source: Mark Olasek

My previous blog post discussed how social media provided consumers with more power and influence in society. This post will take a deeper look at how social media affects businesses.

Pros

-Understanding Customers

Social media is a versatile way in attracting customers. This is because the customers have an easier time to connect with you and, unlike standard advertising, there is a personal touch. Some methods which you can attract customers is: look at social media platforms your target audience uses, devise a strategy for using social media in your business, listen and respond to feedback and use a tone that is appropriate to the platform.

-Brand Loyalty

Brand loyalty is a vital thing to have in a successful business. By applying that personal touch, there is a better chance of a stronger consumer-producer connection. A study conducted by the Social Habit shows that 53% of Americans who follow brands on social media are more loyal to the brands. The customers, in turn, can use social media to promote the product to their friends and achieve a wider market.

-More profit

The amount of advertising done in one-way communication is expensive, risky and not as personal making it hard for the consumers to connect with. Social media not only allows businesses to have that consumer connection but is absolutely free!

Using social media in business sounds like a great idea but unfortunately it’s not that glamorous.

Facebook BLOG pic

Source: Vince Bank- On Culture & Education

Cons

-Negative reviews

An effective way to ruin a business.  Social media has allowed consumer views to be more public and wide-spread and they are able to do more research on what they use and where they go which is why its important to connect with customers. For example, one of the popular bars in Maroochydore got horribly reviewed recently. I had been there a few times and found it reasonable but after reading those reviews I felt unsettled so it’s understandable that potential customers can get discouraged. 

-Employee misconduct

Another big factor is how employee misconduct can affect the reputation of a business. For example, back in 2013, InterActive Corp, a New York based internet company known for owning apps such as Tinder and Match. com, faced a huge backlash when Justine Sacco, a former PR leader, posted an ignorant and very offensive tweet:

“Going to South Africa. Hope I don’t get AIDS. Just kidding. I’m white!” The social media outrage was so huge and so strong that it lead to her becoming globally ostracised. After that incident, IAC assured the public of her instant dismissal and that they don’t tolerate that behaviour and managed to save face.

-Social media apps

Social media, itself, is having a negative effect on businesses. The dating app, Tinder, is ruining the nightlife scene as it provides people with an easier and more effective way to find hook-ups rather than going out to meet someone. In this case, it is not because of the consumer involvement but rather a lack of it because people go to technology for a social life.

After looking at the effects of social media on businesses, you can now use these tips to go out and be the entrepreneur you’ve always dreamed of.

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