Before we say what it is about, let me make it clear that it is not at all about direct selling. In fact, hard selling on social media is very suicidal because today’s internet users are well aware and shelled with advertisements every second.
Social media is about…
Relationship Building: Social media’s key rest in its name, it is about being social. The rules of engagement in the virtual world are no different from the ones in the real world, the trust you build with your potential customers on social media will take time and patience just like any other relationship. With a friendly, consistent and reliable social media presence that adds value, you build a following of people who may not only turn into repeat customers, but who would also highly recommend you to others.
Add Value: To be successful with social media understand this: people don’t use it to look at ads. They’re there to communicate with friends and family. They want entertainment and information. Your goals with social media should be to create an atmosphere where your customers feel safe connecting with you without the threat of being bombarded with “advertising”. How do you do this? By sharing relevant and entertaining posts that engage your audience. Humour, useful tips and information on relevant news are all topics of conversation. You can also turn the spotlight to your fans. Showcasing your customers and fans is a great way to build a closer following and get people talking about your business. Don’t forget to let your personality shine through!
‘Face’ it: People enjoy seeing the human side of business. Give them a “behind-the-scenes” glimpse of the people behind the brand. The fact is we’re all human. Be entertaining, a resource or a destination. You know the saying, “the customer is always right” – they’ll let you know when you’re doing good
Brand Awareness: Attract, engage, and interact with potential customers and be more personal with them. If you’re able to leave an amazing impression, the more people who recognize and are aware about your brand, the more people discuss your company through word of mouth. Online publicity increases your company’s visibility. Establish your expertise in your field and control how people see you and your brand.
Customer Service: By answering questions and handling requests efficiently and promptly, you develop a positive reputation for your business.
Reputation Management: Whether or not you’re on social media, eventually people will be talking about you online. Be in charge of both positive and negative feedback. Take the ownership.
Industry Networking: Social media is not only a platform for you to connect with past, current, and future customers, but it also facilitates connections with others in your field. For small businesses, these mutually beneficial connections are indispensable. Share tips, mutually enlarge your networks, and promote each other’s’ offers to help each other grow.
Strategic Reflection: There’s a lot to learn from your competitors online. Observe their marketing strategies, take note of their pricing, and watch how they manage public complaints for example.
Research & Development: Social media provides a casual, non-committal atmosphere where people feel more willing to share their opinions whether directly to you or as part of a conversation with others. You can actively poll others or amass opinions, and also passively be a strategic listener on the Internet through keyword monitoring, which can help you identify trends in your industry.