Today's businesses can't grow to their greatest potential without a social media presence. That is a fact everyone knows. What we found is that not everyone understands that each social media interaction is not equal. You need to know what will help and hinder your growth as a business. To help clear up that confusion, we offer you the following insight.

Social Media Pros

1.  Humanizing -

Having a solid presence can contribute to humanize your company. Trust is essential for successful businesses, and showing the person behind the brand fosters greater trust from potential customers. In a world where it can be difficult even to reach a human on the phone, seeing who serves you is refreshing.

2. Interactive -

You have a chance of answering questions promptly. You also get the opportunity to know the people who are interested in your brand, making it easier to understand what they want. Emphatic interaction with customers is one of the best marketing skills a business owner can have.

3. Market Research -

Social media is the perfect venue for conducting market research. Polls, both formal and informal, work well here. You also have the chance to observe things that are important to potential customers, allowing you to address those concerns promptly.

4. Cost Saving -

Being able to make your presence known on any given venue can help reduce the cost you spend on other types of advertising, such as television or print. It often costs much less to run an advertising campaign on Facebook or Twitter, for example, than to take out a print ad in a national magazine.

Social Media Cons

1. Time-Consuming -

You need to be present on a daily basis to keep up the momentum on social media. Followers here can be fickle, and disappearing for a few days can deflate your impact considerably. You need to commit to regular contact.

2. Unbalanced -

If you do business in a localized area, you may find that your followers are not necessarily the people with whom you do business. This audience can make your efforts close to useless in regards to enhancing business. You need to determine whether you are reaching those who are potential customers.

3. Risky -

Negative interactions on social media can harm your business forever. There is always the chance of negative feedback, hacking and other things that can hurt your business. One mistake can follow you for the rest of your business's lifespan.

4. Difficult Targeting -

People are more likely to support the brands they already know and trust. It can be difficult targeting potential customers with your marketing efforts. You need to maintain the loyalty of current customers while ensuring you can draw in those who have yet to discover who you are.

Final Thoughts

Social media behavior can offer you valuable benefits in the way of trust, customer insight, and lowering advertising cost. You need to make sure, however, that you do not ignore other marketing efforts because of the time necessary to maintain a presence. You also need to make sure whoever handles your daily interactions understands how to balance advertising with other interactions. Finally, you need to weigh the pros and cons of where the majority of your customers are located and whether sensitive information can be compromised. A person trained in social media practices can make this an excellent addition to your marketing efforts.