There was a time when social network meant Google+ or Facebook to people. The definition and applications of social media have, however, changed and people have started to utilize them for purpose more than just interaction. Manufacturers, service providers and self employed people have discovered the benefits of various social media and want to aggressively exploit it for good.
Doximity, for instance, is steadily getting more users and visitors. It was launched less than 2 years ago and already has doctors and surgeons who share reports through it. This helps medical experts to refer clients to other experts, receive reports exclusively from other medical practitioners, etc. If more doctors switch to social media there could be a vast community that would be virtually in front of the sufferers and patients at just click of a button.
Like Facebook or Google+ transformed the mode of informal communication, every major technology development firms has developed or is developing its social network to release it to small businesses. IBM, Oracle, SAP, SalesForce, etc. are just a few instances in this category. The annual turnover of social media is expected to reach $4.5 billion by 2016. Small and medium-sized businesses are expected to play major role in this incredible growth.
Business owners encourage the use of social media by their employees in order to make them more efficient and obtain maximum business through them. Self-employed businessmen are also readily making the switch. How much social media influences the businesses of present world is evident from the fact that Microsoft spent $1.2 billion to acquire general business communication network named Yammer.
Companies with 5 – 5000 employees are considered as small or medium-sized businesses. The evidence of how small businesses can grow can be found with numerous businesses in various countries that started with less than 10 employees and became a million-dollar apparels company around a year. The secrets were appreciably revealed by owners and had the utilization of social network in common. Similarly, restaurants, medical clinics and even NGOs have been able to reach to more people at lesser expenditure of resources.
Manufacturer or service provider firms are owned by people and people have friends and relatives too. Social media facilitate quick and feasible communication between various people. Thus, when an individual or a small of individuals start a venture, they can get noticed by thousands of people through their friend and relatives with the help of social media. Advertisements are but only for a locality. Widespread advertisement is too expensive for starters. On the other hand, promotion through a social network is feasible and transparent.
When a business owner claims something about its products or services it is supported or opposed by hundreds of comments by the users. More importantly, these commentators review under no influence of the business owner. Therefore, transparency and reliability is maintained through social media. Moreover, whether positive or negative, words spread like wildfire and are either ways beneficial for a business. Lastly, a social network may be free to use but entrepreneurs must spend respectable time to extract the best benefits out of social media.