4 Ways African Start-Ups Can Leverage On The New Media For Growth

You may doubt if you had been told in the 90s that the advent of fast rising new media will revolutionise the entire world in the new millennium. Let me take you through four reasons why you need to bank on social media for an exponential growth in your business.


You may doubt if you had been told in the 90s that the advent of fast rising new media will revolutionise the entire world in the new millennium. The ripple effect is clear to all and sundry. According to StartUp Grind, fast growing Silicon Valley companies leverage on social media as part of the ways of widening their horizon and garner for support for their startups.

Now, let me take you through four reasons why you need to bank on social media for an exponential growth in your business:

1. Community

There is a teeming number of people who are signed on to a social media channel daily. According to StatsMonkey, the most used social network in Ghana is Facebook with a usage of about 94.89%. This basic statistic means that, a large number of the Ghanaian community are connected to one social network or the other. Let’s demystify this, in as much you have people moving from one place to another to search for goods and services, there exists some equally large number of people who spend some time using the internet for social media and may bump into things to buy or a service to be rendered to them. This is one of the reasons why as an emerging business, you have the leverage of the social network community.

2. Cost-Effectiveness

Traditional marketing was what businesses took advantage of in order to break into their market. As a small business breaking into the highly-competitive market in this 21st century, there should be a considerable form of using the digital media to enter into the market. Both channels of marketing are essential but as an SME, starting the digital media way will save you some cash to take care of other things as far your business is concerned. For instance, a sponsored ad on Facebook for a week will cost not more than $70 (GHC280.00) for a reach of over thousands of people. On the other hand, a billboard will not be less than $254 (GHC1, 000). The cost of moving from one place to another to market your product will reduce since you are mostly immobile in using social media. You will agree with me that, as a typical African business, you are being handicapped by economic shocks like high inflation rate, high interest rate and so on; therefore, using the new media will be an add-on.

3. Measurability

The whole concept of digital marketing is interlaced with the ability to measure your performance over a period of time. The analytics that these social networks provide are vital to the growth and sustainability of your small business. Performance management is one of the major factors of business development and the new media makes it possible to measure your performance online for a defined period of time. The reason is that it helps you strategise and look out for innovative ways of marketing and if possible, a change of social media channel. You may not be able to measure the number of people who have watched an ad on the television but give rough approximations, you may not know how many people see that billboard on the street; the point is not to downplay the essence of traditional marketing but as an emerging business you can make a lot out of social media, thus the ability to measure result and performances.

4. Customer Support

Customer retention is to some extent, dependent on the speed of response given to customers’ complaints. One tool that characterizes the social media platforms is that there are ways to easily reach out to you. It is very simple for customers to for instance to mention your business’ twitter handle and tweet their problems or issues out to you on Twitter. Facebook users can also send messages to register their complaints or enquire about your services. One thing to consider is that, if prudent measures are not taken to address these customers’ issues, some may vent their frustrations via the social networks. They ripple effect is not something you would want to bear because a bad reference is a bad reputation for your business. As an emerging business, social media gives you the opportunity to respond to complaints quickly.

You cannot underestimate the effect of social media and how it is quickly creeping into our world.

Ignore it and you are bound to stagnate with your business.