Most people know social is important even if they aren't active users. They've heard the names Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn enough to know this little thing called social seems more than a fad. But what they don't always think about is why social is so powerful in the marketing mix. If you think about the frequency and length of time to which consumers permit brands to speak to them social blows any other marketing channel out of the water.
Think about it, if you sent an email three times a week to your consumers, you surely would get a lot of unsubscribes. If you secure a great article or TV spot using PR you'd get a quick pop of interest, but it would soon be replaced by the next day's headlines. Social, done right, allows you to speak with a consumer multiple times a week for long periods of time.
When it comes to investment social isn't totally free but the cost of creating compelling content will still pale in comparison to producing a TV spot. You also have a better chance at reaching people via social - less competition. TV is so fragmented that even with a large investment you are competing with hundreds of channels. People spend more time on Facebook than any other site and more than 80% of their time is spent on the newsfeed page. What does that mean? If you can get people to follow you, the chances of them seeing your message is quite high.
If done right, social has the power to allow you to talk more often, for longer periods of time than any other part of your marketing mix. It also allows you to have a two-way conversation and gives you the ability to listen in. Not bad. Not bad at all.