5 Ways to Boost Your Online Sales with Social Media
Social media offers an opportunity to gain new customers, engage existing customers, and increase your knowledge base about what customers are looking for. With the holiday season upon us, there’s no better time than now to use all your resources and fully leverage your business through social media.
Identify Your Primary Social Media Networks
You will need to be active in multiple social media networks in order to fully take advantage of opportunities hidden in each, but it’s important to identify which networks address your specific needs. Facebook, Twitter and Instagram are the most recognizable networks, but there are dozens of niche social networks marketers should know about. If you’re selling portable Bluetooth speakers, for example, a good idea would be to find communities for music lovers, starting musicians or even backpackers who want music on the go.
Grow and Nurture Your Community
Building a loyal and engaged community is paramount to social media success. Embrace your community’s feedback. Read every email, comment and suggestion, and reply to them! Offer promotions, push engaging content, offer customer support. Nike, for example, isn’t just selling shoes that perform well for runners. It has created communities around Nike+, an experience with the brand and other runners with shared interests and purpose. An engaged community will inspire your consumers to purchase products and share with friends!
Identify Your Influencers
Social media influence is about nurturing, building and growing an online network or community. When promoting your store or product on any social network, you will begin to notice active customers who are buying your product, sharing links on blogs or forums, commenting and reviewing, and in short – creating buzz and activity. It’s important to seek out these community influencers and nurture those relationships in order to develop brand ambassadors who will help you drive traffic and sales.
Use Images to Draw Customers
When it comes to social media, there is no denying that images have a huge impact on how a product is perceived. For retailers, this means a massive opportunity to leverage the power of visual marketing. In fact, photos on Facebook generate 53% more likes than the average post. Make sure to utilize hashtags and keywords to make it easier for potential customers to find your products when browsing. Top brands like Pottery Barn, Topshop, and Whole Foodshave mastered the art of imagery.
While sharing special sales and new items is great, self-serving promotional posts should only make up a small percentage of your content. Instead, look to engage your audience without selling to them. Include a mixture of contests, inspiration and tips. Ask questions and encourage discussions and sharing of ideas. Think about what your customers are interested in, and focus on sharing content they can connect with and will be inspired to share with others. Make sure that only about 20% of your content is promotional in nature.