It is not startling news that businesses use social media to spread the word and make interactions with its audiences. It’s not also a surprise that local businesses do not have the same resources, budgets and social tools available to gigantic international brand. Nonetheless, this should not be a hindrance to have and manage an awesome social media accounts and campaigns.
Here is one thing that you should keep in mind throughout your social media management. “You need to focus on the community and the locals.” Through social media, you can directly communicate with your customers with the chance to turn those customers into a virtual sales team. More likely, you will be dealing with people from the local community who wants to either try your service or who wants to give feedback. Regardless of their purpose, respond to them as how you would respond to offline customers. Since we focus on the local, you also need to participate on community activities and affairs and of course share those activities online. This would not only make you more exposed to the target market but also will give them a sense of belonging.
Since you’re reading this now, for sure you are ready to gain social media leap for your local business, boost your search engine rankings, and drive sales. Here’s how you can start:
Choose Social Networks
The first step towards marketing your brand is to decide what platform you are going to use. Remember you are not supposed to use each and every platform available. So how do you choose which social media network to use? Simple. You have to know which social media sites are used by your audiences. One way is to simply ask them when they come over to avail of your product or service. But that could be time consuming so here are other ways:
First, allocate time and take a look through your audience demographic of various social networks and analise on which network they thrive. Once you have collated the data and found which social network they use, you can focus on that network. It’s not necessary that because Facebook has the greatest population, it also has your target audience.
Another way of identifying the best social network to work on is to analyse your competitors. Discover where, as well as how, they perform their social media marketing. You don’t necessarily need to follow what they do but you can try to pattern your social media strategy on the successful techniques they use. There are tools that will help you uncover social media insights about your competitors. You can get those for free and use them to choose the best social network for your local business.
Educate, Entertain and Give Great Impressions through High-Quality Content
You need to find out the difference between your customers wanting to get updates about your business versus them being bombarded with too much information about you. People easily get tired with repetitive ads and promotions that do not have any variation. They feel that it’s unnecessary to follow someone who would just post automated contents on their site.
So how can you post on your page quality content? First, make sure to have variants on the kinds of contents you post. Add images, videos, memes, and be humorous when applicable.
Another effective way to post quality content is to post blogs on your website and share it to your social media site. This allows you to control what your audience will read while drawing more traffic to your website. It’s better to choose to write topics about things that would concern your local community.
Offer Exclusive Deals
One of the fastest ways to grow your business is to host contests or give away discounts exclusively for followers. You want them to feel rewarded for choosing your brand and at the same time, you can gain more followers by having more people attracted to the exclusive deals you offer. Remember: People love things that are free!
On the other hand, you can also engage your audience in a contest. This means that they can get prizes while having fun. This strategy would build engagement and will deepen your bond with them. Different social media network would give you different options on conducting a contest so make sure to research first.
Merge Offline and Online Marketing Strategy
Thriving in social media is not done purely through online inviting and posting. You can also make small talks with your customers who visit your shop and have them follow your social media page. If you think this is too much of a work you can simply put posts and attach stickers on your shop walls or doors inviting people to like your page. Surely, they would be happy to follow you and even share their experience on your business.
If you want to grow your social media community faster with less effort, you can reward followers who check-in to your store on Facebook and help you with your marketing campaign. This would give you organic reach and traffic.
Now is the time to embrace social media. Now that you know that even local businesses needs it to thrive don’t waste the knowledge you discovered. Social media is where your customers are, so go to them! After doing these steps and after few posts and responses, make sure to repeat those things that worked and for those strategies that didn’t work, try something else of change some factors of that plan. Bear in mind that your investment for a few hours a week and a few clicks of a button can be huge in terms of gaining customers, building a community and making sales. It can heighten a company’s visibility, broaden reach and engage current and future customers.
Social media management will only work if you do it. If you don’t have time, you have to choose a social media management company that has the experience and tools to help you out!