There is no standard formula when it comes to Social Media. You will never know how your customers are going to respond to a tweet, a pin, an Instagram pic or a Facebook post until you do it. When you tap into something that works and your customers connect, they will start reposting and ‘liking’ what you have done. Those engagement metrics, while difficult to predict, are like gold. That is why experimenting often and analyzing the results is so important.
According to a recent study, 85% of retailers and consumer product companies use social media for marketing. Social media has a direct impact on shopping behavior, even when customers are not in the store. Customers can be at home, on the road or on their mobile devices. One important thing to remember, then, is that you don’t have to have a website for your store to have a social media presence. While it certainly helps, don’t let that prevent you from getting involved with social media. What you actually need is time to do the work of consistently posting messages, articles, and pictures on a weekly or daily basis. If you are consistent, you will get results.
Make Customers Feel Like Insiders
When you make your customers feel like VIPs, they know you will go above and beyond to keep their attention. Posting sneak previews of New Arrivals on Instagram and Snapchat quickly grabs your customers’ attention. Facebook posts also help pique the interest of your target audience; if it’s something they are interested in, you will get more interaction through reposting, comments, or ‘likes’. Test and try using different offers, specials, sales or events that are targeted towards your social media followers.
Free Advertising Opportunities
Social Media has opened a whole new avenue in marketing. Everything is instant; there is no planning, no designing print ads, no additional mailing fees. It’s easy and free. Don’t get me wrong; it does take time to get a following, but in the long term, it helps to keep your customers connected. As a retailer, you can send the same message on several different platforms, making it a great complement to email marketing in particular.
Connecting and Growing
How people stay connected changes all the time. Millennials are attached to their mobile devices 24/7 and like to order directly online. They want everything instantly and prefer online shopping to shopping in brick and mortar stores. Older customers like to come into the store to shop, look around and touch the products before they buy. That is why social media is so important for all your customers and it is how you get customers interested in your new products as well as special store events or promotions. Retailers should have a staff member monitor and post daily, keeping an eye on the likes or comments. In addition, this person should analyze the posts to see what works, what doesn’t, as well as the time of day each item is posted. When you find something that works, don’t be afraid to send out the same message again. You might get an even better response the second time around. Also remember to ask your followers what they would like to see. It promotes conversion, relationships, and can often take away some of the guesswork when writing posts.
To judge the success of your social media presence is pretty easy: just watch how your customers promote and follow you online, as well as their habits when they shop in your store.
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