Social Media nowadays – the big picture
Social media has become a vital part of every Internet user’s life. Forbes tells us that last year 73 per cent of Fortune 500 companies were active on Twitter. But although 79 per cent of 2,100 companies surveyed by Harvard Business Review are using or planning to use social media channels, only 12 per cent of those feel that they are using it effectively. The rapid growth of Facebook, blogging, Twitter, LinkedIn and YouTube offers you the chance to start a conversation with millions every day, but this needs to be done correctly.
It is particularly important when you are running an SAAS business for you to be present on social media and to use this resource to grow your business. Selling an SaaS application means that you depend on the Internet. You don’t have a shop, where your potential customer can touch your product, and neither do you need huge billboards promoting yourself in the city centre, as you can sell your product all around the world.
It’s time for you to choose those channels that will provide you more traffic and more recognition. Don’t try to catch too many rabbits at once, though, because you might end up with none at all. Start with the most important, build a really good brand image and grow your SAAS business from there. So, let’s take a look at a few examples of social media that are especially attractive for SAAS companies.
This one word says it all. It’s the biggest social media platform in the world, with more than 1.1 billion unique active users per month. The numbers might be scary, but you can use them to your advantage. Average Facebook posts are visible for 16–17 per cent of your fans, but visibility increases when people start to interact with the content on your fan page. World data shows that most interaction (with the greatest positive impact on the your profile visibility) is created by pictures and graphical materials.
Currently the fastest growing social media platform, especially in the United States. A Mecca for people wishing to follow and track your activity and that of your enterprise. A very useful tool for contacting people within your industry.
More than 200 million people willing to share their knowledge and experience, and start cooperation with you. If the previous examples were mainly for your customers, this one is more for you and the development of your business. You can find new contacts, establish new business networks, or search for the employees you need to help you with your business strategy.
Most SAAS applications have a blog, but only a few care enough to create a really good one. The key to success here is content. Successful bloggers have to keep posting around many different aspects of one subject. You have to target your blog to a specific group of your end customers. It doesn’t bring you much if you write about everything; you have to create good, lasting, compelling and engaging content. Remember that only 16 per cent of people read websites word for word, so you have to use some techniques that make your blog scannable: lists, formatting (use bold), headings and sub-headings, and pictures … and remember to get to the point!
There are many other good examples of social media that are useful to your SAAS business (YouTube, Google+, Pinterest), but I focused on probably the most powerful tools you can use.
How to get new fans and increase traffic to my social media profiles?
Content is king. You can lure visitors once or twice, but you can’t expect them to stay forever if your content is poor or boring. Good content will always defend itself, and always improves your traffic. Let me give you seven examples of good social media activity.
1. Know your customers
Target them. You can’t make content attractive for every target group on earth. You can’t make everyone happy, but it’s quite easy to make everyone unhappy.
2. Don’t try to be overly serious
You want to project an image of a professional and responsible company, but you have to show a lighter side too. People visit social media because they are looking for entertainment. They want to know that you are also a real person who has a life besides your job.
3. Be systematic
If your SaaS application is being provided all over the world, it is quite difficult to estimate the best time to post something. However, peak traffic times for Twitter and Facebook are between 9 a.m. and 3 p.m., Monday to Thursday. This doesn’t mean that you have to tweet everything at this time, but posting when lots of people are active increases the average number of clicks. On the other hand, it also means that your posts have more competition for followers’ attention. You have to measure your results and find the best time for your business, and there are specialized tools that can help you with this measurement.
4. Post pictures and movies
People remember interesting pictures for longer than “interesting” text. It’s also more likely that people will repost pictures and short movies to their friends.
5. Activate your customers
Ask them specific questions. State a clear call to action. People like to be involved in an interactive discussion; that is what social media is about.
6. Create links straight to your website
This is very important for generating traffic not only to your social media sites, but also to your main website. Social media provides information and entertainment for your current customers, whereas your main website provides conversions and new customers for you.
7. Monitor your results
Track down your traffic rate, conversions and trends. Use this knowledge to your advantage and for planning your future strategy.
Why is it so important for SaaS?
SaaS is no different from any other business in terms of its customers. You need your customers to stay alive. It’s mutual love. You provide them a good product, but they provide the capital that enables you to develop it and stay on the market. Activity in social media is the key to acquiring new clients nowadays. Over 65 per cent of consumers say that the Internet is their first source of information. Social media is extremely popular, and this trend will be even stronger in the very near future. Being recognizable is very important.
So, let people find you. Help them to help you. Stay modern. Stay social.