As technology improves and the internet grows ever larger, business are beginning to see the benefits not only of online advertising and marketing, but in utilizing social media for marketing purposes as well. Social media allows businesses to reach a much wider audience pool and get in-depth analysis of customer behavior.

It doesn't matter if a business is located in Kalamazoo or San Diego for social media marketing to help promote their brand and increase customer retention. Traditional marketing and advertising require much more money and could take months from conception to public release. One of the main benefits of social media marketing is that it can be done quickly, and, should there be any changes or updates, it can be changed on the fly. Social media marketing can also reach a much larger audience in the target demographic for the same amount of money as standard marketing. Almost every country on Earth has the internet, which means that a company's marketing efforts can be seen on a global scale.

Social media marketing has only become a major player in businesses in the last 10 years, so it's no surprise that many companies are still scratching their heads over the actual benefits of using social media.  One of the greatest benefits for business owners is the immediate feedback they receive from their customers. For example, a restaurant may use sites like Facebook to post noteworthy news or have a deal where customers can check-in to the restaurant on Foursquare and receive a discount. An e-store can tweet that a new line of clothes has arrived that day to their followers. Companies can then see how successful a social media campaign in San Diego was that very same day simply by looking at their online or actual traffic to their businesses. The immediacy of the information is one of the many reasons so many companies have turned to social media for a better understanding of customer behavior. Traditional marketing, while many companies do still employ it, can take months to gather all the pertinent analytics for the campaign.

The biggest benefit of online marketing is the ability to easily connect with an audience on a daily basis. Finding and holding onto an audience within the social media world can be daunting, as there are literally millions of social media users around the world. However, once companies get an audience, they can easily maintain contact and imprint their brand recognition further into their customer's lives. Because of this constant contact, once companies have a decent following, they can also gain new followers even easier. Thanks to the various share functionalities of these social media sites, a local business in using online marketing in San Diego can reach friends of their followers thanks to this word-of-mouth-like feature.

If businesses wish to stay competitive in today's market, it's important that they fully understand the benefits that social media marketing can have on their company.  Companies should also consider hiring a social media consultant who can help maintain a consistent and constant online presence.