Social Media Marketing

How to use social media to generate sales

Social media is a valuable marketing tool for most businesses. Originally designed as a way for people to keep in touch online, it’s now considered one of the most powerful forms of marketing; offering enormous promotional potential. However, platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram or Pinterest offer more than just marketing benefits. They also present opportunities to connect meaningfully with customers at every stage of their sales journey!

Here’s some information on how social media can influence the sales process.

Stage 1: Brand Awareness

This stage marks the start of the sales process. At this point, the customer might or might not be aware of your brand, and probably won’t have had any interaction with it. As a result, you’ll need to establish and strengthen brand awareness. You’ll also need to boost engagement by directly interacting with your target audience through interesting, shareable posts, asking questions that are designed to solicit a response, sharing customer feedback and competitions etc. Give your audience content of value to them – something interesting, informative, engaging or amusing.

Stage 2: Brand Recall

Social media boosts brand recognition. Strive to keep it consistent across all media, and you’ll create something that your customers immediately recognize and relate to. By adopting the same tone, visual imagery and content across all social media platforms, your audience will find it easier to remember your brand – which is especially important when they’re considering their buying options.

Your social media pages can also establish you as an authority in your industry, providing the perfect opportunity to give voice to your brand. This is incredibly important when building both trust and meaningful customer relationships.

Stage 3: Consideration

The third step of the sales process is when your target audience are comfortable with your brand and are considering buying from you. They’re still reviewing their options and comparing what’s available, but your brand is high on their list. At this stage, it’s your reputation that will help make their minds up. Where reputation isn’t applicable (i.e. if you are a start-up business), you might initially be competing on the ethos of your brand, product features or price. Your main goal at this point is to encourage people to visit your website, and make an enquiry or a purchase.

Stage 4: Purchase

At this point, the person is ready to buy – and they’ve selected your business, rather than your competition. Good news! However, it’s important to keep customers engaged – especially if you want to develop long-term relationships. The moment of payment and the moment when they experience your products or services are two key points when you should try to actively engage with them. This is also an ideal opportunity to up-sell or cross-sell via email or social media advertising.

Stage 5: More Repeat Business

It’s a lot cheaper to encourage repeat business than it is to find new people to buy from you. As a result, it makes sense to keep your existing customers happy.

Repeat customers often become ambassadors for your brand – and they’ll praise your company verbally, social media and review sites. Keep these loyal customers happy and they’ll share your content, post positive reviews, and of course, keep using your services. Social media is an excellent way to not only build new client relationships, but reinforce existing ones. Through successful social media engagement, your reputation will grow – after all, it’s essentially a form of digital word-of-mouth!

What I can do for you!

Social media features in the marketing plans of most businesses. However, the reality is that, in order to succeed at social media marketing, you need time and expertise. If you’re struggling to keep up with the ever-changing world of social media, or are simply too busy to give it the time it deserves, I can assist.

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