We know we’re not the only ones telling you that social media is good for your business. You hear it everywhere, and now you are just saying, STOP! Then why this post? Well, for those who have tried social media and given up, here’s a checklist that could get you back into the game. Try the strategies listed below, after a lot of research on your audience, and you will surely strike a chord with them with your social media efforts.
Social media is not a joke. Over 1 billion people connect on it every day, and even if 1% of it is your specific audience, it’s not a small number. If you can engage, educate and entertain even this small segment, influencing them to become your loyal customer, then you have successfully taken advantage of social media. You also know that Social media marketing is way cheaper than traditional marketing (print, TV, radio and other kinds of ads) and gives you a large ROI when your campaign is successful. If you really observe your sales cycle, you know that purchases don’t happen over night. You realize that you have to nurture prospects, convince them of your authority/quality and then continue to impress them post purchase as well. How does one manage all this? Social Media is your easy answer. And here are some strategies.
1. Give Discounts via Social media
People are attentive. People are searching. People want to discover and want to get a good bargain. Remember the discount vouchers that used to come with your daily newspaper? Do you remember planning your day around how you could visit the salon to avail that 30% OFF before it expires? Or squeezing in a visit to the boutique which is giving a BOGO (buy-one-get-one) offer? Discounts work. And social media has replaced the traditional newspaper. The only way to get the customer’s foot into the door is through a discount campaign. It’s as easy as a Facebook post or one sentence tweet.
2. Advertise of a Sale on Social
Because of the large numbers of people active on social media, it really makes sense to advertise there. A lot of brands have seen success with ads on Facebook and Twitter. They draw in more people into their circle and sooner or later, convert them to customers. Ads are a healthy distraction sometimes (especially to people who have boring Newsfeeds!) And if you throw in a SALE into your ad, it has double the impact. Not only do you get introduced to new people, but you have higher chances of conversion then and there.
3. Promote a Gift certificate through Contest on social media
Admit it- social media without activities is boring. As a brand, you would do well to hold occasional contests (or the like) to keep your visitors engaged and entertained. Now, you as a brand, are also thinking of the bottom line while entertaining your customers. Then all you have to do is throw in a gift certificate as the reward for the contest, so that ultimately the winner is bound to make a purchase from you (who otherwise wouldn’t bother). It is an exciting way of giving a discount and pushing a sale.
4. Give lots of information about your Niche
As we mentioned before, social media is not only about promotion, but also about engagement and education. Educating your customers is seriously influential in the sales cycle. Don’t say that not one customer has asked you questions. They want to know more, they are thirsty for information. Give it to them. Tell them more about the process that goes into making your products. Don’t pinch on that content. Go full out to ensure why customers have to pay you what they do. And educational information has time and again shown to attract new visitors/ potential customers.
5. Use clear strong photographs
If you are online, there is nothing more effective than using stellar photographs of your products. Brands that go beyond plain product photography earn brownie points. Photographs have a strong connect with people. That’s why you have so many image-based social media platforms (Pinterest & Instagram). Videos are difficult to create, but photography isn’t. Even if it is an expensive affair, your return-on-investment will be high. For consumers, brands with great thematic photography stand taller in their eyes. They are more likely to trust and buy from brands that have images as a medium of story telling. Therefore, do focus on increasing the number of photographs related to your brand as that makes the best content to share on social media which brings in more sales.
6.Give precise information about the products you Post
Of course you are posting promotional content. That is what you are on social media for. Many brands post about the latest products etc. But what they often ignore is the info that goes along with it. Visitors want quick information. They like a picture, they immediately click and want to know the price and even buy it right then and there. Instant gratification is something you shouldn’t ignore and social media is just the platform to do it well. Visitors don’t want to go all the way to your website to know the fabric of the dress, the sizes available, the price, the colour, the shipping details etc. Therefore a product post with all essential information wins hands down. Though some brands like to keep the price private, you need to at least be willing to share such details through IMs.
7. Try to include reviews from real customers
One of the powers of social media is that you get to expand your brand beyond your website and retail store. This generation of customers want to know more of your brand. They are research-intensive. They don’t want to be fooled. Therefore they come to your social media page and see where you stand. Your greatest opportunity to turn these window shoppers to immediate customers is to flaunt examples of those who have trusted you before. Hence, customer review, their photos of your products, their likes etc all count towards changing the mind of a suspicious customer and definitely promises to bring in more sales. If you don’t have customer reviews yet, you need to lay out a strategy to get it on social media itself. Or ask your friends to review your products for a start and then build on it.
8. Promote the content (photos/ blog posts) of your previous customers.
Building on the previous point, get your customer’s content in front of your will-be-customers audience. It could be a fashion blogger who is a real fan of your brand. Then she would be ecstatic if you gave her some of your brand’s exposure. It’s more about a joint collaboration. If you like her, and she likes you, then audiences of both become one segment that is loyal to you and her. Therefore, promote her posts on your blog, engage Instagram followers by tagging specific people in your photos. Share their photos on your account and involve the really loyal customers. Yes, we’re telling you again- make your customers your brand evangelists.
9. Use Analytics to your Advantage
Right, so you have done all of the above and still are not seeing results. What could be wrong? If your really have the best quality content and still not getting much traction, it is perhaps because your audience doesn’t want that particular content. Maybe they are interested in something else. You can find out exactly what through your analytics dashboard. Each social media platform has its own analytics offering and it’s very helpful. They give you various parameters to gauge the effectiveness of your content. At what time most of your audience is on social media, what content gets most engagement, what content gets most shares/re-tweets/views and stuff like that. Use analytics to find a success formula for your set of audience. Then repeat that with every post you put out there. Over time, it’s definitely going to bring in the moolah.
10. Hold Social Media Only Flash Sales
When you make Social Media your fort, people are likely to respond in the same manner. If you give social media importance, people will return the same importance and attention to you. People on social media are there because they are active people, who like fun, entertainment and excitement. Now, if you could hold a flash sale only on social media, then this audience will love you! Why? Because by holding a “social media only” flash sale you are saying that you respect your fans on social media, and are giving this sale exclusively for them. You are adapting to them. And that really pleases followers. Create a strategy that suits your brand and budget, and hold a flash sale that people will buy immediately from!
These 10 strategies are just the beginning. Once you get in tune with your audience and know what exactly they want, social media is going to be your winning strategy all the way.
Please share this with those who you know are struggling with social media.