Ignoring social media is a risk you can’t afford to take in today’s competitive time. You may be wondering about the relationship between the two but there are important parallels in logistics to what has made the social media market so successful.Taking a close look at some of the challenges in logistics shows how social media can address some of the most important challenges faced in logistics today. More than 1.5 billion people use social networks globally and about 70% of companies use social technologies. Companies are not using social media and social technologies to socialise; rather they are using them to grow their business and to bring value to both their company and their customers. Ninety percent of companies using social technologies report realising business benefit from their use. It is estimated that the potential value that could be realised across the value chain through the use of social technologies is more than $1 trillion annually.
How does social media help grow your business?
The logistics world is highly interconnected and the information is shared across companies which are more than transactional. Specialists collaborate to serve common customers and find new ways to attract them. Information has to be shared throughout the ecosystems of large retailers and transportation modes to ensure efficient movement of freight.
If you boil down the previous statements, you start to understand that the critical success factors for logistics-intensive companies are flexibility, collaboration, the ability to connect to multiple parties, share common information, and exist in multiple ecosystems. Based on these very facts, we give you not one but 5 reasons why companies should use social media.
1) Define Yourself
People are utilising social media to learn about your company and to talk about your company. If you are not a part of the conversation, others will define your reputation. If you monitor or participate in the conversation, you have the opportunity to define your company’s reputation.
2) Where Are You?
Where are customers looking for and finding information? Customers are turning to the internet and social media. If they are looking for your company – what are they finding? A key finding of the CEB study was:
“companies that fail to ‘show up strong’ in this context are underserving
potential customers and are at risk of losing mindshare and, ultimately, sales
This is largely due to when customers tend to buy or invest. Specifically, 80 to 90
percent of prospects who first engage with your company is not ready to invest. Forty percent of these prospects will be ready to buy within a year and 80 to 90 percent will be ready to invest within two years.
3)Better Insights For Managing Risks
Being engaged in social media can provide your company timely (often real-time) insights about emerging risks, events, competition, and opportunities–enabling you to proactively take the appropriate action (corrective or opportunistic).
4) Innovate and improve
Social media can help your company generate more–and better–ideas by tapping into the collective insights, knowledge, and experience of your employees, customers, and industry.
5) Engage and communicate
Social media enables you to engage with customers and employees. It is one of the best ways to have an edge over your competitors. To truly win a crowd, you need to pivot to tell the right stories they want to hear at the right time. The easier you will make it for your customer to invest their time and money in your company, the more easily they will do it. Social media gives you an insight of the competitive market like nothing else and enables you to have a direct contact with your customers.
There is no simple way to calculate the ROI of social media and social technology. However, both research and thought leaders agree–the risks of not participating in social media outweigh the risks of participating. So much so in fact that companies not using social media and social technologies will be at a disadvantage.The majority of small businesses use social media. Companies not participating are in the minority.
Perception needs to come face to face with reality: social media and social technologies are not about socialising; rather they are about communicating, managing risk, defining your reputation, being innovative, and building business intelligence.
Himani Pirta is a literature student and freelance content writer based in Shimla, Himachal Pradesh. The tools of her art include a camera and an eye for colour in her travels. On her blog, she publishes her thoughts about random and ordinary things.
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