There’s no denying the importance of social media, especially during the coronavirus pandemic. It’s where people spend most of their time socializing, looking at products, and generally wishing they had more. This is what makes it an incredibly effective marketing tool. In an ever-challenging market, it’s a necessity for businesses, though doing it well is not always simple.
There’s more to it than having a pretty Instagram aesthetic or the number of likes you get on each Facebook post – it’s complex. Marketers must harness the opportunities social platforms present, like audience insights, market research, and customer segmentation.
The thing is, social media is vast. Aside from some of the major platforms – Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, and Twitter – there’s always another TikTok waiting around the corner. It’s a marketing challenge that’s always evolving.
The question is, how do marketers overcome this challenge? One way is by making your business’s social media an interconnected, omnichannel machine – everything working towards the same direction and on the same page. Part of this is by introducing an effective telephone communications service.
For small businesses, voice over internet protocol (VoIP) is the easiest, most efficient solution. It’s an innovative phone service that’s been around for some time, with features ranging from group messaging to wireless screen sharing. However, only recently have businesses started to get the most out of it. So, how can VoIP be used in a social media context?
In the basic sense, VoIP describes that technology that allows you to communicate by voice or other methods (like SMS or fax) over the internet as opposed to traditional phone lines.
VoIP isn’t a new technology. It’s been around for many years, but it’s only recently that it’s evolved into an effective communication system. If you have a relatively strong internet connection, you’re able to make phone calls over the internet, as opposed to a standard landline.
That’s reflected in the decisions of IT leaders, 90% of whom are expected to stop buying on-premise communication tools by the end of 2021. And the pandemic has only strengthened that position as most companies have adopted at least some version of remote work.
Now, businesses are opting for VoIP services as genuine alternatives to traditional telephone systems. Why? Well, a VoIP system can do everything a normal telephone system can do, and more. When people ask: “how to provide excellent customer service on social media?”, most people will say it is easy, affordable, and well-connected. A VoIP system ticks all these boxes.
A VoIP system not only connects your business to customers over the phone, it integrates all your communications. It’s a holistic approach that leverages the power of social media. Businesses can enhance the relationship they have built with customers over social media, and follow up with a real-life personalized phone call.
This is the overarching benefit of VoIP, but there are a number of reasons why businesses should be looking to make the change to VoIP. Here’s how you can use it to transform your social media marketing.
Social media is great for exploring and acquiring potential customers. But it’s easy to be fooled by likes and follows. Of course, a new follower, share or like, are all great signs of engagement with your brand. But converting these leads into customers is what defines success. You should always ask yourself: who on social media is actually buying?
While social media is powerful, engaging customers to an actual sale is tricky. This is where VoIP comes in, allowing businesses to follow up and reach potential customers as soon as they’ve made that initial engagement. Through the information you’ve collected via social media, you can then make a personalized call to help continue that customer’s journey.
For example, a customer may create a Facebook status that mentions your brand or one of your products. They might be confused or in need of help on how to get the most out of it. Instead of relying on the limited capacity of social media, customer service teams can get in touch instantaneously. Customers also appreciate a human voice, which develops their experience and interaction with your business.
Mobile browsing is a staple of everyday life. With an ever-growing list of applications and services on our smartphones, consumers can swipe and discover whatever it is they’re looking for. With this in mind, it’s a good idea to integrate these apps.
VoIP allows businesses to do this, which makes it an effective mobile marketing strategy. With an internet phone system, you can keep all your apps connected while maintaining a seamless and optimal user experience. In turn, this helps you increase engagement on social platforms. You can also easily access all the information gathered through these applications when filtered through a VoIP channel.
As with all marketing campaigns, tracking success is essential. There’s no guarantee that a campaign with thousands of likes and shares is actually generating a return on investment. That’s why assessing each social media campaign is so important.
A VoIP system is an incredibly effective way to do this. You can assign different numbers to each campaign, and assess success by recording the number of calls to each number. It’s relatively simple, but a great way to distinguish what’s doing well and what needs improving.
You can also increase general communication between various departments. People in charge of different campaigns can easily connect via the best free conference call service available and review campaign success more effectively.
As mentioned, anything that simplifies the social media minefield is worth paying attention to. In the past, businesses have relied on social media as a way to connect with their audience. But a lot of this was superficial. In many cases, what appeared genuine consumer interest was limited to social media engagement alone. Connecting with customers on social media can also be a slow process.
VoIP channels make it quick and easy. For a start, they can leverage social media’s ability to get personal details. VoIP, then, allows businesses to make quick and easy calls to these customers. They don’t have to waste precious time waiting for replies over message systems or inboxes. Instead, they can make worthwhile connections there and then.
As well as being a cost-effective and time-saving alternative, a VoIP system is also great for companies who want to grow. Setting up your VoIP takes no time at all, and upscaling it is just as easy. Your business may experience rapid growth, with social media leading the way. To match this growth, you can also add to your VoIP channel.
You can introduce new numbers to new campaigns and take advantage of the range of new additional features as they’re rolled out. VoIP is an innovative channel built to manage and match a business’s growth.
While social media is great for many reasons, there are some areas where it’s less effective. It can be hard to navigate support on social media as a customer engagement strategy. Getting to the bottom of a problem, and finding a solution is a much slower process on social platforms.
With a VoIP system, you can handle customer satisfaction. You can offer fast and ready auto-attendance and seamless queue management handling. VoIP also handles all aspects of call handling, even those made out of office hours. With a call-recording feature, monitoring metrics and benchmarks can be further improved.
Above all else, VoIP is an efficient addition for those required to look after customers. It’s a quick and easy system, that leaves a positive first impression on customers and builds a strong early relationship. Customer services have to operate at the highest standard. VoIP is one way to get you there.
When it comes to harnessing your social media marketing, there are few things quite like VoIP. To be successful, social campaigns should be integrated and unified across all platforms, aware of the latest trends, and fully aware of what the audience is looking for. But a lot of the time, this is far easier said than done.
The usage of VoIP phones simplifies this entire process. It’s quick and easy to use, as well as cost-effective. With a VoIP system, you get all of your social media marketing under one roof. It’s cutting-edge modern communications, constantly evolving with the development of technology and new social platforms. This makes it the perfect dance partner for social media marketing.
Zofia Bobrowicz Cohn is an EMEA Product Marketing Manager at RingCentral, the leader in cloud communication and cloud contact centre software. As a strong believer in digital transformation, she thrives by helping organisations find the right technology that supports their business processes. She has written for websites such as RingCentral UK. Here is her LinkedIn.