Mobile marketing has now officially established itself as the most dominant form of marketing. Email marketing held the title previously but as spammers took over, it now only has an open rate of 22%. This might not seem a worrying statistic but when contrasted with an open rate of 98% for text messages, it becomes obvious that mobile has triumphed. Today 68% of the population own or have access to at least one mobile device, although multiple devices have become common with the increased usage of iPads and tablets. However, it’s all well and good saying that mobile is dominant and the best way to target customers is through mobile devices but mobile marketing can be an expensive strategy. Creating a mobile friendly website, building an app or using geofencing alongside SMS are just some expensive examples of mobile marketing that are not viable for small and medium sized businesses. One potential solution however is social media marketing. With the exception of Google Maps, the most common applications used on mobile devices are social media apps. Even if businesses had the budget to build an app, the chance it would have the success rate that the popular social media apps do is highly unlikely. This being said, it’s beneficial for businesses to use the apps already out there for marketing. It’s a cheap solution and your audience is already there. How to use social media marketing: Create a profile. Start by creating a business profile on the most popular social media apps. Facebook is the most popular social media app, it is free to create a business page on there and there is a free app specifically designed to manage your Facebook pages. Facebook is but one example; businesses can also use Linkedin, Twitter and Pinterest for the same purpose and they are free and easy to use. Hashtags. #TargetAudience. Use hashtags in posts on social media to connect with the right audience immediately. The more you target a relevant audience, the more likely you will be to convert your followers into customers. Sponsored posts. Social media has a lot of free opportunities but sponsored posts can help increase your reach and engagement, particularly useful for new profiles who don’t have a lot of followers yet. You don’t need a large budget to afford sponsored posts, it’s not as competitive a market as Google Adwords, and it can achieve great, instantaneous results. Include links in your social media posts and on your profile bio. This is a useful opportunity to get customers to check out your products or services but don’t spam every status with website links. Humanise your posts and engage with followers and you will see results. 9 Best apps for social media marketing: Facebook Pinterest LinkedIn Twitter Hootsuite Flickr Instagram Snapchat Vine Not all of the above apps will be useful for your business but if you have products for sale, image sharing sites are really useful. Likewise if you offer B2B services, Twitter and LinkedIn would be preferred app choices. Social media marketing can be used by everyone in some way and it satisfies small business budgets. Images: ”Desk with Social Media and Connection Concept/ Shutterstock.com“ __________________________________________________________________________________ Connect with Tweak Your Biz: Would you like to write for Tweak Your Biz? Tweak Your Biz is an international, business advice community and online publication. Today it is read by over 140,000 business people each month (unique visitors, Google Analytics, December, 2013). See our review of 2013 for more information. An outstanding title can increase tweets, Facebook Likes, and visitor traffic by 50% or more. Generate great titles for your articles and blog posts with the Tweak Your Biz Title Generator.