The impact of social media: how to get small businesses to consider advertising

For many small businesses, social media has been revolutionary. It has given them the chance to raise their profile and communicate with their customers like never before. And for some, they have used it to replace their existing advertising. So how can you encourage them to consider advertising as a marketing opportunity?

  1. Ask them how social media works for their business

    Listening to your prospects is one of the best ways to gauge your pitch. It pays to know how each small business is using social media and if they have any challenges with it. Maybe it takes a lot of time or they’re not getting the results they want. Maybe it’s working well for them. The information you get can help you to understand their needs and provide the right information about how traditional advertising can help.

  2. Show how advertising and social media can work together

    It’s not a case of advertising vs social media. The two complement each other. Research shows that the impact is significantly increased when traditional and digital advertising are used to work together. In fact, multi-channel campaigns have been shown to generate 300% more sales than single channel marketing. When talking to prospective customers, share stories about similar businesses who have used social media and traditional advertising and explain the positive impact that this has had.

  3. Explain the benefits of local advertising

    For some small businesses, social media appeals because they can target specific groups of customers. Fewer businesses realise that they can do this through local advertising too. Be sure to explain how advertising using your medium helps them reach the right group of prospects and how this can increase awareness, build trust and generate sales.

  4. Keep in touch

    Everyone likes to feel valued and business owners are no exception. Keeping in regular contact allows them to ask questions, understand their campaign and express concerns before they become an issue. If you wait until they approach you, it may be too late, even if it’s a simple thing to fix. Little and often is the key to maintaining a good relationship. NRS Media can help you with this. Many media partners are now outsourcing their small business customer retention to us, freeing your Local Advertising Teams up to manage the larger mid-sized accounts.

  5. Share the facts about cost and effectiveness

    If small businesses are resistant to the idea of advertising because of the price, you could explain the hidden costs of social media and its effectiveness. Here are some statistics that may help:

    • 43% of small businesses spend six or more hours a week on social media

    • There’s been a 44% drop in non-sponsored brand content in Facebook users’ news feeds

    • Posts on Twitter and Facebook reach just 2% of their followers

    • Only 0.07% of followers actually interact with those posts

    • Only 26% of small businesses rated social media as “extraordinary” or “excellent” for ROI.

    Because it’s getting harder to reach people, some small businesses are looking at advertising on social media. But the costs are going up, with Facebook increasing ad fees by 123% year on year.

    With increasing expense and time, small businesses may be more likely to look at alternatives. If you can explain how traditional advertising can be cost-effective and deliver the returns they need, small businesses should be more open to working with you.