I live in Berlin in a neighbourhood, which used to be quite infamous. This is changing since some years. In my street there are some hip restaurants, a bag designer from New York and a startup which produces and sells organic cosmetics.
Last week, I had dinner with a friend in a new restaurant just around the corner. It is run by young people and the place is really hip. They have events during the weekends with a DJ and they offer a great italian cuisine.
We did some chit-chatting and I made the remark, that his Instagram account was empty. He answered me, that they don’t like to do social activities and that they think that it’s too much work.
In Germany, many people are not fond of the new times, which have arrived already. When I talk about digitalization, most people react with the same phrase “I don’t want that!” Even companies ignore digital marketing (especially B2B companies haven’t realized, that B2B customers are also B2C consumers with the same expectations).
It seems, that people are frightened by all the new features and changes which appear swiftly. Especially Germans are concerned about their privacy (although the German authorities sell the email addresses from communities). Another problem is the fact, that the government is way back behind other European countries.
Here an article from The Telegraph.
In 2013(!) our Chancellor Mrs. Dr. Angela Merkel said “The Internet is Neuland for us all” (Neuland = uncharted territory). In since that time, some changes have taken place, but there is still no real awareness about digitalization, smart cities, waste management. Even when it comes to energy, germany is not among the top countries.
So if the government hasn’t arrived in the new age and doesn’t take steps to get better and faster internet, to make sure that the pupils in schools are getting digital tools, that our cities become smarter and that we are informed, how can one expect that the citizens are open and curious and excited?
But I was astonished, that the young entrepreneurs who run a new restaurant and need a full hose every night, were not interested in doing social marketing. The restaurant is located in a relatively quiet street and there are countless eateries in Berlin. Many open and close after a short period.
Therefore it is important to show the people, that you are existing.
Thanks to the omnipresent Internet and the social platforms, it is quite easy to get the attention from potential customers. Write one or two posts a day, send photos and even a video and upload it to Facebook®, Twitter®, Instagram (very important!) and other platforms like i.e. SnapChat® for free.
Of course I know, that social marketing can be extremely expensive. But for a start-up it is a great opportunity to create marketing for free. Social marketing is, IMHO, the best way to promote your business.
And the importance is not something, that I just figured out. It is a fact.
Especially Instagram® has become extremely popular and users are liking and commenting photos and videos. I have a private account myself and I was amazed how quickly my followers accumulated.
No need to say, that I have a Facebook® profile and page and a Twitter® profile as well. And when I post on Instagram®, I can share it on my other social platforms by simply clicking the “share” link and publish the new content on three platforms at the same time. Makes a broader audience.
Marketing on a limited budget
As a start-up, there is naturally a limited budget. Social media have made it possible for small start-up businesses to reach millions of consumers with the click of a button.
Easy access to your customers
With social media, you can choose your target audience and choose who can see your ads. Social media have made it so easy to listen closely to your customer’s comments and also provides an opportunity to reply to them. Social media help you to know the real opinion of your customers as Bill Gates said, “Your most unhappy customers are your greatest source of learning”.
Part of what makes social channels like Twitter and Instagram effective marketing tools is the interaction you have with your customer base.
Easy to share information
Sharing information and updates about your business is simpler and quicker on social media.
Here are some numbers, which show the importance of social marketing:
- 1.9 billion unique users monthly on Facebook
- 75% of users spend 20 minutes on Facebook everyday
- one billion unique users monthly on YouTube
- 2 million video view per minute
- 600 million unique users monthly on Instagram
- 53% of Instagram users follow brands
- 317 million unique users monthly on Twitter
- users spend average 2.7 minutes on Twitter every day
- 317 unique monthly users on Pinterest
- people referred by Pinterest are 10% more likely to make a purchase on e-commerce than users on other networks
- 106 million unique monthly users on LinkedIn
- 45% of people making $75K/year or more use LinkedIn
All those facts show how important it is to engage in social marketing, to make great business with happy customers. Especially for young entrepreneurs.