Social media can help small businesses engage with customers

May 22, 2012

A majority of small business owners say attracting new customers is key to surviving a competitive market. Many owners are turning to social media, like Facebook and Twitter to grow their business. From Phoenix, KJZZ’s Terry Ward reports.

Gail Goodman Gail Goodman (Photo courtesy of Constant Contact)

TERRY WARD: Eighty percent of small businesses in America have a Facebook page. It’s getting happy customers to log-on and ‘friend’ that business that’s the trick to growing the customer base. So says Gail Goodman, CEO of Constant Contact, a business consulting firm. Goodman says getting a customer to sign-on to a company’s Facebook page starts with asking.

GAIL GOODMAN: They’re not just going to stumble on you on Facebook. You need to ask. So, whether that’s in your store, your restaurant or as you finished a client engagement, finish it with, “We’d really like it if you’d friend us on Facebook.”

WARD: Goodman is author of the book, “Engagement Marketing.” She says social media builds on the age-old method of attracting new customers: Word of mouth.

GOODMAN: So if you have existing customers and you get them to engage in social media, mainly Facebook, Twitter and Linked-In, then you can drive more word-of-mouth referrals by getting social visibility.

WARD: Goodman says customers look for and trust comments and reviews of a business found online. She cites a Neilsen survey showing 78 percent of people trust consumer recommendations. Constant Contact is an NPR underwriter.

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