Creative Ways to Grow Your Business Using the Social Media
It’s no more news that they’re lots of benefits in using social media to build and expand your business, but the challenge, however, could be how best to deploy the instrumentality of social media to grow your business.
Social media currently boasts of 4.33 billion users across the globe, according to DataReportal, and this equals up to 55 percent of the world’s total population.
Of course, with this large number of social media users around the world, it stands to reason that making social media a crucial part of your marketing strategy is one that shouldn’t be ignored by any serious-minded business owner – this is irrespective of whatever industry your business represents.
But first, we must know, in specifics, how to harness the social medial to our own favour especially when it comes to building our business.
1. Begin With a Plan
It’s not difficult to begin utilizing social media for business purposes. Generally, we all use social media in our everyday lives, so it’s something we’re already used to. It doesn’t cost anything to make a Facebook Page for your business or begin posting on Instagram, or create a presence on Twitter.
However, before taking a full plunge, you must note that each great business system begins with a good strategy. Indeed, you can utilize social media facilities at no cost, but the time and effort must be creatively used for the best outcome, hence, the need for planning.
Without proper planning, you have no unmistakable objective for what you’re attempting to accomplish. This implies it’s absolutely impossible to know whether you’re getting a profit from such activity or not.
So set aside the effort to create a strategic social media plan for your business. This guarantees all your social endeavors support explicit business objectives.
(a) Create Social Media Goals & Objectives
Be intentional; set your goals and objectives when starting social media engagements for your business and pursue them vigorously. Remember you want to achieve results! Let these goals be specific, timely, attainable, and measurable. You must use metrics that will have a real and verifiable impact on your business. For instance, your target could be to gain a new social media following to boost your brand or you intend to increase your conversion rate – simply generating likes to your posts might not be really useful after all.
(b) Get Ideas from Competitors
Seriously, there’s nothing wrong with borrowing ideas from your competitors, but it would make a lot of sense if you refine these ideas and personalize them in order to suit your unique brand.
Visit their social media pages and handles, see how they promote their brands, how they target their audiences, and every other thing; then mirror yours to theirs with a touch of uniqueness.
(c) Develop a Social Media Calendar
A good social media calendar simply makes your online business engagement well streamlined, and result-oriented. You need to know the right time to make postings on your handle that would bring the most engagements from your brand followers.
Learn the 80-20 rule in promoting your business online, you don’t have to always make a post that calls for action. Rather, use 80% of your content strictly to educate or entertain your audience, then use the remaining 20% to sell your product or promote your brand. This is a time-tested effective way to promote your business via social media.
2. Identify Your Audience
For you to accurately target your audience you must, first of all, know who they are, what demographic they represent. And the good thing is that most social media for business allow you to micro-target your audience, and this is something huge especially when you are on a budget, you want to put the last dime to its optimal use.
The best way to identify who your actual customers are is to start by compiling their data. Social media analytics comes very handily here because it provides you with the actual data on your customer base.
With this, you are able to know who is interacting with you online and who buys your product. Once you have known your audience it becomes a lot easier to target them through your promotional postings.
Also, tools like Hashsuite Insights can be of great help in providing you with referral sites, top hashtags, etc.
3. Expand Your Leads(Audience)
Statistics from Social Media Examiners have shown that at least 65% of small businesses are on social media basically to acquire new leads.
While it’s good to use social media in generating leads, they’re far more useful when they help you generate highly qualified leads through advanced targeting.
So once you now have a clear picture of who your audience is, creating expansionary targeted ads becomes necessary; through this, you would be able to reach more people who find your brand interesting. For instance, if you are using a Facebook ads campaign, you can increase your budget to grow your potential customer base. Because the more you spend on these advanced targeting ads the higher your chances to generate more qualified leads that’ll ultimately boost your patronage.
Aside from spending on your ads campaign, there are other little things you can do to improve the quality of your leads.
- Design graphics that are visually appealing based on your brand
- Write for your reader and social media audience
- And include a call to action that creates a sense of urgency
4. Create Brand Recognition
One of the top priorities of every business is to gain more brand recognition. This is because, more often than not, people buy products based on the emotional attachment they have developed towards a particular brand. For instance, many people around the world are emotionally attached to Apple’s products, especially the iPhone. Whenever the company announces the introduction of the latest version into the market, many would queue online to be first to purchase it – not minding the price.
Of course, these are companies that have worked their brand up to the high echelon of global acceptability, but things are not the same for small fledgling businesses. They will have to put more effort to be able to achieve even a small fraction of such brand recognition and acceptability.
However, social media unlike traditional media, provides businesses with the luxury of putting their products in front of millions of people, helping them reach their target audience without having to bend over backward.
So as a business owner, cultivate the habit of always creating and posting relevant content on your business social platforms. Create a unique Logo and Cover image that boldly and beautifully convey the language of your brand.
Give relevance, also, to visual elements of your brand, but do not place them in such a way that they can become distracting or overwhelming.
For instance, the Apple logo and cover page on Facebook is simple and enticing:
Social media, if well used, has the capacity to help you promote your brand and gain both recognition and dedicated patronage.
5. Build Relationships
Social media marketing offers small businesses the opportunity to interact directly with their customers and page followers. It’s advisable for business owners to seize this opportunity to bond and build relationships with their followers instead of always looking to sell their products to them.
Try as much as possible to be responsive to your clients especially when they engage with your ads and organic content. When you provide them with answers to their queries and feedback it helps to build trust and result in loyal followership.
Acquiring new clients is great for business expansion, however, building strong business relationships guarantees customer retention which in turn ensures ongoing patronage. So whenever followers like and share your posts, it gives it validity among other things.
Statistics from Hootsuit’s Social Transformation Survey indicated that 69% of the participants said that social media was very instrumental in maintaining customer relationships during the Coronavirus marketing season.
Here are a Few Strategies to Use in Building Relationships on Social Media
Having established that building business relationships through social media platforms is one important factor to business success, it’s important, also, to look at ways business owners can achieve this beyond just responding to comments and providing feedback to their followers.
(i) Create a Facebook Group
Digital gatherings have been made possible through online platforms. So apart from creating a business page, creating a Facebook group is equally important, because it provides an umbrella under which businesses can build community and brand loyalty. Many Facebook groups run into hundreds of thousands.
Here business owners can host podcasts which also provides more opportunity to bond with the followers
(ii) Engage Social Media inbuilt Interactive Tools
They’re a couple of interactive tools on our social platforms business page owners can use to engage with their followers, such tools include using stickers on Instagram, polls on Facebook and Twitter, etc.
With some of these interactive tools business owners would be able to sample their followers’ opinions, perhaps, over the introduction of a new product or something else. The bottom line is that these tools help to promote business-client relationships.
(iii) Establish Connections with Other Business Owners and Influencers
Reaching out to other entrepreneurs within the niche like yourself could offer a lifeline to your business in critical situations or offer you some valuable tips on how to run your business.
Influencers, on the other hand, are now an integral part of digital marketing options as they help many brands get more exposure and make plenty of sales. Influencers are not only for the big companies and brands, they are Micro-influencers and Nano-influencers that offer the same services to small businesses.
The good thing is that you can always find those within your budget, as long as they have dedicated followers of their handles that they can promote to.
6. Maximize Conversions
Of what use is high-quality traffic generation if they don’t eventually get converted into paying customers? As already stated, social media is a veritable tool for the generation of traffic for brands, but this is just half the job. Businesses should be able to sell their products or services to these potential customers channeled their way through traffic-generating campaigns.
So the challenge here would be how can business owners drive a high conversion rate on social media?
Consider these two effective ways:
1. A Strong Call-To-Action
When making an ad copy or promotional materials add a clear and strong call-to-action, this will direct the potential customer on what to do. It has to be compelling to make them take action. Recently, Nike introduced the tagline “Just do it”. This is just a simple but clear message. In the same way, you can design some inviting CTA and post it conspicuously on your social media profile. The essence is to encourage your followers to take certain actions such as purchasing your product.
2. Organize Giveaways, Contests, or Discounts
No matter what type of business you run, organizing giveaways and competitions helps your brand in different ways both in promoting the business and generating sales in the long run. The interesting thing is that this is a very cost-effective strategy, yet impactful.
Giveaways and contests provide you a good avenue to increase your engagement with your followers as they get to interact with you more in hopes of winning. They also help to spread the information among their friends and families which goes further to increase your brand exposure.
7. Make Direct Sales With Social Commerce
As business trends keep evolving so also is social media marketing. A new concept such as Social Commerce is already becoming popular; it simply means the ability to sell your products directly from social media channels.
In 2020, the global market was valued at $89.4 billion and it is expected to grow to $604.5 billion in 2027
According to eMarketer, by June 2020, about 18.3% of adults in the US had made purchases through Facebook while 11.1% through Instagram
This new trend has continued to push the frontiers of e-commerce, providing small businesses the opportunity to use social shopping tools to sell their products and services even without owning a website. Now you can find terms like “Facebook Shops” and “Instagram Live Shopping”.
Finally, in the foregoing, we have been able to see multiple ways business owners can creatively use social media to promote their brands, drive traffic, and ultimately make sales. As this trend continues to expand, more opportunities will continue to spring up; therefore, it’s instructive that entrepreneurs be on the qui vive to take advantage of these numerous social media channels to boost their businesses.