How to Generate Sales on Social Media?Author: Chloe | Created: 02-12-2021
Social media platforms have become far more than just a way for people to connect, chat and share tips and ideas with others over the internet. Whilst forward-thinking businesses had a ‘profile’ on platforms like LinkedIn and Twitter, social sites, such as Facebook and Instagram, were left to a small niche of companies – until now.
Even if businesses did have a profile, not many used their social media platforms to their advantage, principally because they didn’t need to. Having the icons on their website and sharing a post or two occasionally ticked the relevant marketing boxes, but that was about all. So, what happened to change the face of social media for businesses? Two things – digital transformation and Covid-19.
The importance of social media for businesses today
The use of social media was on the up – people used it to socialise, get their daily news updates, play games, seek entertainment, look up information, find a local supplier, get recommendations… in fact more than 53% of the world’s population uses social media.
The world is slowly transforming, digitally. If we want to know something, find out something or connect with somebody, we head to our social pages. Digital marketers are changing their focus to digital marketing and embracing social media trends. A 22.7% increase paid advertising on social channels in 2021 lays testament to the push towards generating sales on social media.
Then came Covid-19 lockdowns and restrictions; if your business wasn’t active digitally, via social media channels, you would struggle to get a look in with consumers and survive. The bonus for many companies and organisations that did transcend the gap between the high street and online discovered that they could learn so much more about their customers and target audience than they ever thought possible.
Why social selling?
We can hear the hardened salespeople now – selling is selling, no matter the platform or face-to-face, isn’t it? Ahh, if only that was true; sadly, that approach has been the downfall of many a salesperson. Social selling delivers far more to not just the consumer, but the business or organisation as well.
Whatever the size of the business, from the one-man small business to the international corporation, social selling is using your social channels to:
- Connect and engage with your ‘ideal’ customer.
- Create relationships and build trust.
- Create brand awareness and enhance your brand’s reputation.
- Increase brand/product/service visibility to your target customers.
- Establish and build credibility.
- Drives organic traffic to your social pages and website.
- Providing customer support and delivering value.
- Generating quality leads = better pipeline = increased sales.
With curated content and social engagement, businesses are now able to offer more to their existing and potential customers than any single high street shop or website could hope to do. Companies and organisations are delivering solutions to their customers pain points and providing value right in front of their targeted audiences.
How to generate sales using social media?
Before we delve into the ‘how to’, it must be said that your social media channels and website must be fully optimised and consistently active. Poorly managed social networks and a dated, slow website will have a negative impact on your audience, and therefore your business.
So, before you press that button on your social paid advertising campaign or post your latest product video, make sure your social media accounts, and that of your sales team (if you have one), are informative, engaging, provide all the relevant information about your company, products or services, and include the vital call-to-action. Add stories about how you’ve helped your customers, local community and other organisations. Create videos showing how your products or services can benefit your customers – essentially, be creative.
We’ve compiled our top tips to help you generate sales using social media:
- Don’t forget your hashtags – most marketers associate hashtags with Twitter but they are just as useful with other social media channels. Hashtags enable you to track your content as well as audience engagement and conversations based around the hashtag topic. Make sure your hashtags are specific to your campaign or event. Use trending hashtags and if not promoting a sale, special offer or event, use them for brand engagement, too. However, don’t be tempted to use too many – one or two is absolutely fine.
- Offer one-off sales, special offers or discounts – everyone loves a bargain; just think Black Friday and Cyber Monday! But before you hit the ‘post’ button make sure you are ready for many orders in a short space of time. Your stock levels, online checkout, packaging and shipping need to be prepared and ready to go. Your website also needs to be optimised sufficiently to be able to handle large volumes of traffic.
- Run a competition – another activity consumers can’t resist is taking part in a competition to win a bundle of goodies, but you’ve got to make it worth their while in taking part. It helps to drive brand awareness, increase customer engagement and even if those that take part don’t win, chances are they’ve noted the prizes and have made a mental list to purchase them at a later date.
- Consider ‘free shipping’ – if you are suffering from a high level of cart abandonment, it’s likely that your shipping costs are causing the problem. We’re not talking taking on the burden of the cost to ship your goods. There are other ways to offer free shipping including a discount code for free delivery on your next order, spend a specific amount to get free shipping, introduce a friend and get free shipping, or use this coupon code to get free shipping – there’s plenty of options.
- Make sure you are mobile-friendly – if you’re social media channels, website or landing pages aren’t mobile-friendly, you are missing out on a large number of potential customers. In addition, if consumers have seen it on social media via their mobiles, they are twice as likely to share it than through a desktop computer. So, keep headings short, build awareness through videos and images, add subtitles to videos (not everyone can hear), link to mobile-optimised landing pages, use mobile post formats, keep the content simple and to the point, post at peak times of mobile usage.
- Curate user-generated content (UGC)– for people to buy online from a business, they must be able to trust you and this is where user-generated content comes to the fore. Post reviews, testimonials, photos from happy customers and encourage comments from previous buyers. This all helps to generate authenticity and trust.
But there’s one thing that every company or organisation must learn about leveraging their social media channels to generate sales; it is a team effort. To make sure your social media strategy is effective and successful, it takes the teamwork of every department – sales, marketing, accounts, operations, distribution and even HR.
Rococo Digital offers comprehensive web design and digital marketing services including social media management, PPC, branding, SEO and print marketing. Discover how we can help your business drive engagement online, contact us today.