Do I need social media for my construction company?Social media, like it or not, is becoming more and more of the everyday life of businesses and individuals. There are over 3 billion internet users—and over 2 billion of them have active social media accounts. There are so many reasons to consider starting a social media campaign, here are a few questions I use when evaluating if a company should begin:

Is your target market active in social media?

There are many social media playgrounds, odds are good the minority, if not the majority of your prospects are playing somewhere in social media land. A more important question may be, “what social media are they using?” Every year Pew Research Center takes a comprehensive look at social media users.  In 2016 they reported 8 in 10 American adults use the internet and 79% of them are on Facebook. Facebook is currently the social media giant holding far more users than Instagram (32%), Pinterest (31%), LinkedIn (29%) or Twitter (24%). Each social media platform is frequented by it’s own flavor of users. The report breaks down each individually. To generalize:

  • Facebook has the largest variance of users and even manages to engage the most Americans over the age of 50 of any platform.
  • Instagram has a user base comprised of mostly younger adults.
  • LinkedIn has a larger college educated user base as well as persons with an annual income exceeding $75,000.
  • Pinterest has significantly more female users than male.

Is your competition blowing up social media?

I know you’ve heard the adage, “just because your friends jump of the bridge doesn’t mean you should too.” But in this case, you probably should. And consider doing a swan dive instead of jumping feet first. At a certain point marketing activities become status quo, if you’re not keeping up, you’re being left behind.  If the majority of your competition is on social media, you should seriously consider adding to your marketing mix.

Are you recruiting for jobs (especially among the hard to reach millennials)?

Many companies are experiencing a challenge recruiting for educated entry level positions. If you’re one of them, you may need to make your imprint in social media. A third of young adults, age 18-29, also commonly referred to as Millennials, consider social media one of their preferred channels of communication. And a resounding 90% of the age group uses some form of social media. Your social media presence can do more than just connect you with the young employees you seek, it can make an impression. People often research company profiles before applying for jobs to get an idea of the company’s personality and values.

Do you plan on advertising on social media?

Social media is powered by marketing dollars. The ads are relatively easy to set up and fairly cost effective to run.  Social media marketing spend increased 33.5% from $17.7 billion in 2014 to $23.6 billion in 2015 and it just keeps climbing. Ads can generate traffic to your website and, as a side effect, increase your social media following. If you’re planning on running social media ads be prepared for people to also check out your company’s social media profile. A ghost town isn’t a good first impression.  Even a nominal amount of activity is better than none. Advertising and posting really need to go hand in hand.

Do you update your website often and need a good way to tell people about it?

Updating your website with valuable content is a time consuming task. But people aren’t just going to happen back by on their own. You have to tell them about it. What better way to celebrate your recent updates than bragging about them via social media?

Do you want to be part of the conversation?

People ask for advice in their buying decisions via social media and opinions are freely given both good and bad. If you want to know about the mentions of your business or participate in the conversation you’ll need to be on social media.

If you don’t plan on keeping up with it, just don’t bother.

With all the reasons why social media is great it’s easy to get swept away with the idea. Not engaging in social media doesn’t make you a marketing loser. It just eliminates a lead generating source from your marketing toolbox. But reality is that social media is social and if you don’t plan on going to the party and making new friends you may just want to stay home.

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