Some believe that social media is a temporary marketing interest, where temporary means unprofitable. However, others have recognized it as a huge marketing leverage and have found numerous ways of taking advantage of it. Marketers claim that social media marketing is an important aspect of any promotional campaign, as Hubspot reported in 2014. And while most marketers participate in social media, not all of them are sure which social media tools are best for them.

All in all, social media marketing has demonstrated an enormous potential for optimizing and improving a business, but some who wish to use it still lack in understanding on how to do it. These are some of the most important ways that social media can help your company.

#1 Higher Brand Authority

People used to brag to other people about a service or product. They still do, but now they do it on social media. New audience members will start following you for updates when someone posts your brand name. You brand will seem more authoritative and valuable to new users as more and more people start talking about it on social media. Also, your visible authority and audience reach will skyrocket if you manage to interact with major influencers on Twitter.

#2 Increased Brand Recognition

Social media networks are just new pathways for your brand’s content and voice, and every opportunity for increasing your visibility and syndicating content is valuable. However, social media makes the work easier because it makes you more recognizable and familiar for existing customers, while it is more accessible for new customers.

A frequent Instagram user could hear about your brand for the first time after stumbling upon a tag on a friend’s photo, upload or like. After seeing your presence on different social media networks, otherwise uninterested customers might become acquainted with your brand. Social media leverage is great and should be used for increasing brand awareness, but you shouldn’t neglect classic offline methods of brand building, such as handing out promotional USB drives, t-shirts, bags, coasters and other material to potential customers and members of your target audience.

#3 Higher Conversion Rates

There are few distinct ways in which social media marketing leads to higher conversion rates, but its humanization elements are probably the most significant. Social media platforms allow brands to act like individuals do. This is important because people don’t like doing business with companies but with other people. Instead of being seen as a large corporate behemoth, which doesn’t help them, brands try to show that they don’t value their customers as cogs but as individuals.

Also, unlike outbound marketing, social media has a much higher lead-to-close rate. Credibility and trust in your brand improves simultaneously with the increase in number of your social media followers. This means that your conversion rates on existing traffic can be improved simply by building your audience in social media.

#4 Decreased Marketing Costs

In order to generate increased traffic, Hubspot reports that 84 percent of marketers claimed that only 6 hours of effort per week is enough. For a channel as vast as social media, you’d agree that 6 hours is not a big investment. Results of your efforts can be seen if you can dedicate just one hour each day to developing your syndication strategy and social media content. You will never have to worry about spending large portions of your funds and going over the budget once you get a feel for what to expect. Start small, and increase your budget and conversions correspondingly.

#5 Improved Search Engine Rankings

If you want to get relevant traffic from search engines, then you should have an SEO strategy designed for your brand. Distributing links that point back to your website, ensuring meta descriptions and optimized title tags, and regularly updating your blog is no longer enough. Search engines now use social media presence to calculate their ranking, which is another strong indicator of the importance of social media. Strong brands almost always use them, so search engines may use your social media activity as a proof of your brand’s credibility, legitimacy, and trustworthiness.

You lose while you wait. Social media has proven its powers in generating conversions, traffic, better search engine rankings, increasing brand awareness and brand authority. These platforms cannot be ignored anymore, so it’s better for your business to dive in as soon as possible.

Emma Miller is a Sydney based writer with a degree in marketing. Interested in digital marketing, social media, start-ups and latest trends. She’s a contributor at Bizzmark blog.