Social Media Presence- the game changer for retailers.
- Why it is so important for local SMB
- How to grow your social media presence
Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, Twitter, Pinterest, Snapchat, TikTok and even Google+ or Xing and LinkedIn are not only dominating our private life’s, communications and communities, but became a critical factor for businesses all over the world especially since the pandemic lockdowns. They pushed people to spend more time online. People are relying on social media for more than interacting and sharing with family and friends – it is also used to communicate with brands and businesses. There are plenty stories of success which underline the justification for the existence of social media: GoPro has more than 16 million IG followers, 2,23 million Twitter followers and almost 11 million FB followers and the brand name is widely used as the hashtag #gopro. Nike and its most popular hashtag #justdoit is focusing on athletes and sports teams which led to over 93 million followers on Instagram, almost 8 million on Twitter and 33,3 million on Facebook.
In the last decade social media platforms emerged to the number one way to connect with consumers. They have turned into little detectives, searching for brands and businesses which match their expectations and standards. Brands and retailers which understood the personal engagement side of the two-way communications platform compared to traditional one-way advertisings have also realized the incredible power of social media in todays’ digital age.
“Personalized feedback, fast response time and interaction are the drivers for customer satisfaction. This is the reason social channels became frontline for customer service. Customers are seeing social media as part their shopping experience. It is not only an option anymore, but mandatory for any business.” Markus Demirci, founder and CEO of mPocket.
Social media is here to stay. It became social commerce. But how does it bring that special benefit for driving sales and helping customer loyalty grow?
1. Establishing relationships with customers
Considering that communication over social media increases the customer satisfaction more than over the phone or via email, this is a great opportunity to build some genuine relationship with future customers. Highlighting experiences with you and your store and sharing also the ones which were not that great as well as your responses will lead to a stable and authentic reputation. Social media is a great opportunity for keeping customers coming back for more and telling their families and friends which will eventually help to gain more sales and win your customers long term loyalty.
2. Building customer loyalty
57% of consumers follow a brand to learn about new products or services while 47% will follow to stay up to date about company news. These followers turn into engaged consumers which can result in a visit of the website or app and later in sales and recommendations. All your customers may prefer one platform over the other, therefore you need to figure out on which to focus. The presence is inevitable and needs to accompany your target audiences’ day-to-day life on social media. Whether it is highlighting new stock, sharing company news or initiatives or sending some holiday wishes – emphasize your brand values.
3. Authenticating your reputation
Connect with so called influencers. Customers trust those influencers more than any paid ad and use their recommendations as orientations when it comes to purchasing decisions. An influencer does not necessarily have to be any international superstar. For SMB it is enough to pick some local person which is popular to your target audience – they are serving as word-of-mouth recommendation in an online format. After identifying such brand influencers, you can set up product tests, store tours or promotional posts.
4. Directing traffic to your website and your store
The idea behind social media marketing in retail is not only building customer loyalty but also to concretely funnel traffic to your website and your store. Over social media channels you provide your (potential) customers a convenient way to reach a variety of pages over a platform which they use on a daily base. Interacting with them on their preferred daily channel will maximize their awareness for you, your brand and your store.
5. Gaining insights about your customers
The data behind your social media activities as well as the ones from your customers side can be analyzed in a useful way for further activities. With Google Analytics you see to which posts and content your audience responds to the most, which post activity receives the most attention from viewers and which one leads to the most interaction, request or communication. Being familiar with your own social media marketing statistics helps you with reviewing your strategy and setting new goals.
Social media can be used for SMBs to reach their target group in the best possible way. Combined with ads it is possible to target even more precisely, but customers do not want to be advertised on social media, they want to be engaged. For them it is primarily a communications and interactions platform on their own terms comparable to interacting and reacting like with friends and family. When the social becomes too commercial you are running the risk of turned off.
“Meet your customers’ expectations on their social level. Interacting with your followers will turn them into fans if your content is not only informative, but also personal, exciting, inspiring and authentic and motivates your customers to engage. Your customers want that feeling that they are connecting with a real person behind the company” Markus Demirci, founder and CEO of mPocket.
The importance of social media is unquestioned to engage with customers nowadays. Not only for global brands, but also for local SMB. Are you ready to drive sales for your business with the help of social media? In our next article we want to show you how you can grow your presence easily.
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Marketing & Communication Manager mPocket
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