How Businesses Use Social Media for Marketing

By Marianne Chrisos - Published on September 26, 2018
How Businesses Use Social Media for Marketing

Social media marketing needs to be a part of every overall marketing campaign, no matter how big your business.

Social media is a powerful tool that can better connect your business to your audience.

Social media sites are have become so foundational in business marketing that many large organizations have their own social teams, dedicated to developing and rolling out social media marketing campaigns. But even small businesses need to pay attention to social networking sites for their marketing possibilities. Here are some of the way that businesses use social networking sites to boost their brand.

Paid Ads and Organic Posts

When social networking had a smaller global presence, it was easier to get through to people using social media sites. Less content was being published on sites like Facebook ten years ago, and the algorithms to have content be seen were very different than they are today. It’s much harder for customers to stumble upon your business products or announcements with modern social media network algorithms.

That’s why most businesses use paid advertising on social media. This helps them get more exposure, much like a paid ad in a magazine is going to get a business more exposure than the sign on the front of the building that customers may drive or walk by. Ads also help businesses target their audience better – social media ads can be created to only appear to people in certain areas, of certain ages and income brackets, certain genders, and other specific criteria that allows businesses to spend their marketing dollars on the audience that they think is most likely to want or need their product or service.

Another way that businesses use social media for marketing is through organic posts – posts that aren’t sponsored by the business or that the business hasn’t paid to place higher in a user’s feed. Organic posts can still very effective ways to for brands to reach their loyal customers who are following their business needs.


Sites like Instagram have really helped grow the rise of influencers in social media marketing. Unlike many paid marketing campaigns, where exposure, brand awareness, and impressions are some of the metrics of marketing success, influencers can often help to push the needle of sales. Influencers are popular or trustworthy figures who have a social media account that they use to promote businesses or services. Influencers can be anyone from “mommy bloggers” to celebrities like Kim Kardashian and athletes like Colin Kaepernick – as long as they have an audience that likes and trusts them, they have a platform to influence customers to buy or use products that they align themselves with.

Social media marketers often pay influencers a fee for their review, but some businesses pay in free product.

SEO and Search

While business social media accounts don’t automatically mean a higher rank on search pages like Google, social media can help businesses market themselves.

One way that social media sites like Facebook can boost your business are through raising your authority and credibility. If your business posts a link and that link is shared by several followers, Google and other search engines read that content as “popular”, and grant you greater authority as a content publisher, which can help push your content higher in searches.

Reviews on your social accounts – from Google to Facebook to Linkedin and Glassdoor – can all be pulled into local searches for your business (or businesses that share a search keyword). Having a strong social media presence, then, is beneficial past just the social platform itself.

Reviews and Referrals

While reviews can be posted on social media sites and pulled into general search results, many customers use social media platforms like Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, and Instagram to voice their concerns with a product or brand. Social media monitoring tools help businesses keep an eye on what’s being said about their brand across social channels and brand representatives can jump into social conversations to make a recommendation, answer a question, or solve a problem, all helping turn the possibility of negative press into a positive interaction.

How businesses use social media for marketing can have a significant impact on their company. From how customers find their business in search to how they interact with their brand online, brands have an opportunity to use social media sites to develop relationships and grow their positive reputation.

Marianne Chrisos | Born in Salem, Massachusetts, growing up outside of Chicago, Illinois, and currently living near Dallas, Texas, Marianne is a content writer at a company near Dallas and contributing writer around the internet. She earned her master's degree in Writing and Publishing from DePaul University in Chicago and has worked in publishing, advertising, digital marketing, and content strategy.

Marianne Chrisos | Born in Salem, Massachusetts, growing up outside of Chicago, Illinois, and currently living near Dallas, Texas, Marianne is a content writer at a c...

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