Social media can make or break a brand.
It’s estimated that 52% of online and offline purchases are influenced by Facebook alone, with nearly a third of shoppers actually purchasing items directly through social media platforms. Social media marketing has rapidly overtaken old-school methods to become one of the most cost-effective and user-friendly marketing techniques there is, as well as the most interactive.
Thanks to real-time capabilities and levels of data-gathering that can’t be matched elsewhere, you can now tailor your social campaigns to the exact needs and demands of your demographic – producing fully targeted, relevant and timely advertising.
Here are five ways that you can leverage social media to increase your following and drive sales in the coming year:
KNOW YOUR AUDIENCE
The data-capturing capacity of social media is staggering, helping you identify engaged population segments and determine the best focus for your resources. With social media sites like Facebook categorising users by all manner of criteria, why limit yourself to age, sex, and location? By including your biggest competitors as interest targets, you can attempt to convert their fans by placing unobtrusive ads or articles in their news feeds. Targeting the right people can pay off massive dividends.
RAKE IN THOSE REVIEWS
Success on social media hinges more on how much your customers talk about you than on how you talk about yourself. Monitor engagement with your brand across all channels and you can pinpoint conversational themes – reviews aren’t just marks out of five stars on Facebook, they’re the comments people make about you in their Tweets, what’s happening in your comments on Instagram and a host of other things. Listen to your social feeds and use the information to find out what you’re doing well and what you need to improve on.
UTILISE GIVEAWAYS, COUPONS AND COMPETITIONS
Though giving away things for free may sound counter-intuitive to making a profit, a small outlay can reap big dividends. Facebook and Instagram ‘like and comment to win’ contests are a fast and effective way to encourage new and existing users to interact with your brand, broadcasting you to their own networks in the process of trying to win a freebie.
This kind of campaign is incredibly low-budget, making it a great choice for up-and-coming eCommerce companies. For an extra boost, you could offer runners up a discount code or coupon for your site, to increase the chances of them making a purchase and thus becoming a potential lifetime customer.
SOCIAL, SHOPPABLE VIDEO
One-third of all activity online is spent watching videos, which might be why more than 51% of marketing professionals state that video gives them greater ROI than any other type of content. On a website, videos can sometimes feel awkward or disruptive, but on social this just isn’t the case. 82% of Twitter users regularly use it to watch video content, and it’s mostly through Facebook that YouTube videos truly go viral.
A number of brands are now trialling shoppable videos on social, with Snapchat stories offering up click-through functions from short, sweet adverts to product pages. Between the natural acceptance of video as commonplace on social media and the ability to exhibit your wares in a simple, shareable, creative format, this kind of marketing couldn’t be more valuable.
RESPOND TO FEEDBACK
Engaging with your audience is possibly the best way to build your following and increase sales. One great way to do this is by encouraging comments on Facebook and Twitter – the good and the bad – and then responding to these comments in a friendly and positive manner. The story of Samsung’s illustrated exchange with one avid fan went viral a few years ago and led to the company rewarding the fan with a customised phone – as well as invaluable widespread positive media coverage for Samsung. One study found that customers spend between 20%-40% more with brands who respond to customer service requests over social media – not bad for something so simple and easy to do.
You can even respond to criticism of other companies and “poach” customers. A quick search for key phrases on Twitter or Facebook will allow you to pinpoint disgruntled customers, which you can then directly target and offer solutions to their problems.
74% of marketers plan to grow their social media advertising usage in the next 12 months. So don’t get left behind – leveraging social media in your content marketing can be one of the most effective ways to build brand loyalty.
If you’re looking for new, innovative ways to convince and convert your target audience into new customers, then get in touch today.