Social Media Marketing Advantages And Disadvantages (2023)
The benefits and importance of social media marketing cannot be denied and should not be overlooked. If you’re interested in learning more about the many social media marketing advantages and disadvantages, stick around.
We will discuss what social media marketing is, how it can benefit your company, and explain the merits and demerits of social media marketing.
With 3.5 billion social media users worldwide, you have 3.5 billion reasons to build a marketing strategy around social media. It is not surprising that 73% of marketers have found success when using social media in their marketing strategies.
You can too, if you approach it the right way.
What Is Social Media in Marketing?
In the plainest terms, social media marketing is when a brand makes use of social media platforms to connect with its audience.
Social media can help to grow sales, drive traffic to websites, build your brand and create lasting relationships between you and your customers.
It can become quite a complex marketing strategy, with social media listening, content creation, data analysis and follower engagement.
You will find that the most important social media platforms in 2020 are Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, Snapchat, Pinterest and LinkedIn.
We look more closely at this topic in our article, ‘Most Popular Social Media Platforms To Use For Marketing’. We highly recommend that you take the time to read it over a fresh cup of coffee.
If you want to know more about what social media marketing is, check out our in-depth discussion, ‘Social Media Content Marketing guide.
What Are Social Media Marketing Advantages and Disadvantages?
We will now take a look at what you can gain from social media marketing. Also, we’ll discuss what some of its negatives are.
We’ll start with the positives.
Of course, the most obvious social media marketing advantage is the sheer number of people you will be able to reach. Since that goes without saying, we won’t discuss it too much.
Just know that you have the potential to reach a large part (if not all) of your target audience through social media.
Reaching customers through ‘old school’ advertising such as pamphlets and TV or newspaper ads isn’t as successful anymore.
With social media marketing, ads feel more organic and less ‘salesy’. Your customers are more likely to react positively when they see your brand on their social feeds instead of during the ad break in their favourite show.
With that said, let’s get to the reason why you’re here – the many social media marketing advantages.
Better Customer Satisfaction
When marketing for social media, you’re marketing specifically for your customers. That means the advertising will speak more directly to your target audience.
Although many of us won’t admit it, humans love positive attention. Your potential customers want to feel acknowledged and social media makes it possible.
Never underestimate the value of good customer service.
When you can react to questions and concerns directly, people will feel more connected to your brand.
They will feel like they matter and that is what customer satisfaction is all about. Being able to quickly reach out to your audience is immensely beneficial.
You can let people know that you genuinely care about them and their experiences. This will create a positive experience and your brand will grow in popularity.
Brand Awareness Is Improved
Since so many people are using social media, they are much more easily introduced to your brand.
When you share quality content and your customers are exposed to it, your brand awareness will increase.
And if you give those customers a good experience, they will start to share it with their friends – one of the benefits of social media.
More shares and likes will increase your brand recognition and you won’t have to fork out thousands for the marketing!
Once people start talking about you on social media, liking your posts and sharing them, you’re getting free exposure.
With this exposure, your brand will reach more awareness than you could have gotten with old school marketing. On top of that, it happens a lot quicker because the social media world is a fast-paced one.
Gain Better Market Insights
Another social media marketing advantage is gaining insight into your industry. When a company knows its market, its success rate increases vastly.
That’s because you know what your customers want, why they want it and how they want it.
With market insight, a company knows the interests, opinions and needs of their customers. That kind of knowledge helps to build social media marketing strategies that really work.
It is much easier to gain market insight thanks to the many tools available on social media. With analytical tools such as Facebook Analytics and Agora Pulse, you gain a wealth of knowledge.
Monitoring and sharing tools such as SocialOomph is great for boosting your productivity. And SocialPlanner is one of the best social media content planners and marketing tools that you’ll find today.
You really don’t have an excuse to not have great insight into your market and how to tap it effectively.
It’s Very Cost-Effective
Marketing on social media can be surprisingly cost-effective, especially if you do it right.
Signing up for Facebook, Twitter and the other platforms is easy, free and poses no risks. We do recommend that you learn more about the social media platforms because they are very different.
While one marketing strategy could be very successful on Twitter, it won’t work as well on Facebook, for example.
Once you have enough knowledge about what works on which platforms, you will find that it’s not as expensive to use.
You can expect to pay for advertisements but with the high return on investment (ROI) rate social media marketing offers, it’s much more cost-effective than traditional marketing.
Our ‘Social Media Marketing Tips To Help You Grow Your Business in 2020’ article is a great place to start if you want to learn more.
Inbound Traffic Is Boosted
Social media marketers know that inbound traffic is vital for the success of a company. This is when you attract potential customers even before they’re ready to buy.
Inbound marketing is considered one of the best ways to take people from being strangers to being loyal customers.
One of the advantages of social media that is great for your sales funnel is inbound traffic. When people react to your call to action and land on your web page, they go from ‘interested’ to ‘customer’.
Of course, you need to have the right content and marketing strategy for this to happen. But once you’ve got the traffic, you’ve won part of the battle.
Give your audience valuable and engaging content and your traffic will increase.
Disadvantages of Social Media Marketing
It is only normal for even the most popular marketing strategy to have drawbacks. The important thing is to be aware of them.
That way, you can do your best to avoid the negatives and enjoy the positives. In the end, you will find that the pros of social media outweigh the cons.
Although social media marketing advantages include being affordable, it can swallow up a lot of your time.
There is a lot of content to be found on the internet. A lot, as in A LOT. Google processes over 40,000 searches every second.
And if you’re doing things right, your content will show up in the search results. With that said, you need to create interesting and fresh content regularly.
Consistency is key and that means you’ll be creating new content, and doing on-going research all the time.
Frequently sharing new content takes up a lot of time so it can be very time-consuming.
Using social media for marketing means everyone can see your content. This, unfortunately, includes your competition.
On the flip side, you’re also able to see what competitors are doing and learning from them.
There isn’t really much you can do about this. Simply focus on all the social media benefits and doing your best.
Qualified Staff Are Needed
If you want to focus on your important business matters, we highly recommend that you hire staff.
Your staff will be able to create your content and run your social media accounts. But, you need them to be competent and able to do the work.
Using social media for business purposes isn’t the same as when it’s for personal accounts.
You will likely have to provide your staff with the right tools, internet connection and whatever else they may need.
Naturally, you’ll have to pay them decent wages as well, which could be costly if your team is big.
Brand Name Is Vulnerable
A very big social media disadvantage is that it is easy to tarnish the good name of a company.
If negative information gets shared on social media, it can spread like wildfire. The public will see it and sometimes they’ll take part in the negativity.
Potential customers will be deterred from dealing with you. When something like that happens, you have to react immediately.
Swift reaction could save your company. Make sure that you are always professional and handle negativity with care.
Slow Return On Income Results
Marketing a business on social media is a long-term investment. It is a successful and effective strategy but it takes time. The ROI (return on income) is great but timely.
The benefits of social media are many (as you’ve seen) but fast results aren’t one of them. You should not expect overnight results when marketing by social media means.
Social media, for marketers, is all about creating plans that will show great results over a long period. It takes dedication and determination and a lot of time.
But you will not regret that you use social media for your business.
Now that you’ve got a clearer picture of the benefits of social media (and the social media disadvantages) we’ll discuss the ‘how to’ of this marketing strategy.
Social Media Marketing How-To
Now, let’s discuss how to use social media in your digital marketing strategies. We know you’re eager to get started so we’ll keep it brief.
You need to have goals and they need to make sense for your business. When it comes to digital marketing, there is no ‘one-size-fits-all’ solution.
You need to use social media in a way that is sensible and logical. Just going out there and posting memes or funny videos won’t get you very far.
When you come up with your marketing plans, you need to know what results you want for your business.
Do you want better brand loyalty? Are you hoping to boost awareness and offer more engaging customer service?
Whatever your business goals are, be realistic. We suggest that you start with small objectives.
You can gradually build on them and create more goals as your social media following grows. Give yourself time to learn what works for your customers and what doesn’t.
It is impossible for a business to cater to customers if they don’t know them. Do proper and thorough research into who your target audience is.
Use social media analytics tools and market to your customers, not past them.
Your customers want to know that your business is not only about making money. Show your human side and connect with your audience.
Get to know the people that are interested in your products or services. When you do, you’ll be able to give them exactly what they want. It’s a win-win situation.
You’ve got your business goals, now you need to know how to measure your progress. There are many metrics that will help you keep track of how your marketing strategy is doing.
In general, you need to closely watch your business’ reach, engagement, clicks and shares.
You need to create and curate content that will interest your customers. You have to come up with content that they want to view and it needs to be interesting.
Do market research about your audience. Find out what is important to them. Is it customer service? Then focus on creating content that addresses your relationship with your customers.
If they want to know more about how your kind of product or service works, share detailed information with them. The content you share has to be 99% about your audience and 10% about your brand.
When you create content that makes your audience feel valued and involved, you will improve brand loyalty – always a good thing.
You don’t have to create all your content yourself, you can curate content from other sources. As long as it’s relevant and reliable, you can use anything. Of course, there are some rules to follow but it’s not too complicated.
Check out ‘Top 10 Content Curation Strategies To Make The Most Of In 2020’ for more on this.
It is important that your content isn’t boring or uninteresting, but you’ll understand how to do this as you create content.
There you have it – the advantages and disadvantages of social media marketing. It is very easy to get started. It is also easy to get carried away and start making mistakes.
But as long as you have a well-thought-out plan and stick to it, you’ll see only the benefits of social media.