Why Social Media is Vital to Your Business
Whatever your goals are as a company, social media can help you achieve them. That’s because the institutional investors you want to reach actively use social media – and they use it to make investing decisions.
So say various studies, including a recent report by Greenwich Associates, which found that nearly 80 percent of institutional investors use social media on a regular basis. In their study of financial professionals and how they use social media – their seventh annual such study – American Century Investments also found that some 46 percent of professionals attributed significant business acquisitions (we’re talking US$1 to U$5 million) to social media.
Here’s how social media can help you, and why you should be making it an intrinsic part of your communications strategy:
1. It will help you grow your community
The numbers don’t lie: your investors are on social media platforms such as Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter, and so are other potential investors. If your business is on these platforms, it will be on the radar of the people you want to connect with.
2. It will help you interact with your target audience
You can use social media to tell your audience what you’re up to; whether that’s releasing an annual report, holding an event or to announce new appointments within the company. And you can see how they react to it firsthand – you can track their tweets and respond in a timely fashion, correcting mistakes.
In this way, you will get to know your audience. But it’s also an opportunity to control how people perceive your brand: by taking part in the conversation, you can drive it in the direction you want it to go. And you can offer investors transparency.
3. It will help your audience trust you
When you’re transparent and engaging with investors and prospective investors, you gain their trust. And that’s important: the 2017 Edelman Trust Barometer Special Report found that 93 percent of institutional investors felt that being kept in the loop enhanced their trust in a company. The same report found that 82 percent of institutional investors make investment decisions based on that trust.
4. It will help you keep your finger on the pulse
As well as tracking investor behaviour, you can use social media to stay up-to-speed with market news. We’ve already established that you can use social media to stay up-to-speed on what investors think and are looking for. Put these two tools together, and you are all set to create content that investors and prospective investors are actively looking for.
And again, this is where social media comes in. You can also use LinkedIn and Facebook, for example, as platforms for publishing your own market insights, or to provide clients with educational content. These are two of the most sought-after forms of content on social media platforms, says American Century Investments’ study.
This goes back to trust, and to engaging with your community. If you appear to know what you’re talking about, and if you present your audience with content they care about, you will show them that you’re listening to what they want, and that you know what you’re doing. What’s more, if you share content they’re interested in, they’re more likely to respond to you – and to give you their business.
Vishwas Thakkar (link: https://www.linkedin.com/in/vishwas-thakkar-5aba394/) is a digital marketing and SEO specialist who works with clients in areas ranging from insurance to ecommerce and F&B. He has worked as a software professional for ABN AMRO, Merrill Lynch, Thomson Reuters, Morgan Stanley and RBS. His blend of experience in IT, business consulting and the digital world means he is uniquely positioned to understand the challenges IR faces, and to deliver practical, efficient and results-oriented strategies.