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We’re all aware that social media is a great place to catch up on the latest gossip, stalk ex-partners and discover hilarious animal videos. However, more and more savvy businesses out there are realising the benefits offered by these platforms in terms of forging connections with customers and building brand loyalty. Yes, social media has swiftly become a key way for businesses to tap into their consumer base and inflate their recognisability.
However, it takes a few tricks of the trade to accomplish this. Here are our top tips for turning your social media channels into wheel-turning, cog-churning, loyalty-building machines.
Create a strategy
For a business to truly succeed on social media, it should implement a regular posting schedule and a strategy based on its users’ desires. There’s no blanket approach to using social media in your marketing efforts, but as a general rule of thumb, allot a specific time each day or each week to post your content and adhere to that. While it will naturally vary between different industries, morning, midday and evenings are usually the optimal times to post – i.e. when people are riding the daily commute to and from work or taking their lunch break. Test out different strategies and posting schedules, determine what elicits the most positive response and then roll with that. Facebook and Instagram offer great insight tools which show various statistics such as the days and times your followers are most active, as well as their age, sex, etc.
Interact with your followers
All too often, businesses think that once they’ve slapped some content up on their social channels, their job is done. This is simply not the case. Social posts are designed to engage your users, so show them that you’re listening – ‘like’ their comments and post responses (yes, even if they’ve left a negative review of your company). Social media is a two-way street: if your customers are taking the time to acknowledge you and your products, it’s important that you reciprocate that gesture and welcome them into your culture, which brings me to my next point…
Showcase your unique culture
Social media is the perfect opportunity to offer a bit of a ‘behind-the-scenes’ glimpse into your company’s culture. No one likes a faceless conglomerate – the birth of social media has now opened up plenty of gateways for businesses to show their personality and build a brand voice. Simply put, you’d be silly not to use this to your advantage.
Offer exclusive opportunities
Social media also gives consumers the chance to feel like they’re part of a ‘club’. Make sure you give your followers incentive to stay by offering them opportunities they wouldn’t otherwise receive in-store. Get them excited about new products by posting sneak peeks; host competitions encouraging them to tag your business name; or offer exclusive deals. This kind of social media behaviour gives your customers a reason to continue following you and engaging in your business.