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5 Ways to Use Social Media to Drive Sales

Dollar Bills from solid business social media presence With The Word CashThere are a lot of reasons why business owners and managers jump into social media, but one of the most recurring motivations is the incredibly general, “we’re here to increase sales.”  While you may have more concrete goals in your marketing plan, that motivation is the underlying justification that rationalizes all the time invested in posts on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and other social media platforms (choose carefully).  Here are some ways to turn that motivation into actionable social media tactics when you set your company’s online marketing plan.

Include sales in your social media plan

Hopefully, every social media update you post is done with your audience in mind and answers the question, “what do they want to know?” Combine that with the business goals and a clear voice and you’ve got a winner of a marketing plan.

Undoubtedly, one area your audience is interested in is saving money. If you’re running a sale that helps them with that, include it in your list of planned posts and tweets.  To be clear: that doesn’t mean you should fill up your plan with only information about your latest sale, but it does mean that you should post sales ads AND informational posts in line with your sale goals (think 80% info/20% sales posts).  For example, if you’re running a sale on dog leashes, schedule posts and tweets about the sale AND posts that help your audience with dog training and aids (like leashes!). If you can’t wrap your mind around that kind of plan—-or you don’t have the time—consider hiring a marketing company to set a marketing plan and get results (here’s why).

Make it easy for your audience to ask for quotes.

The path to a sale is not always clear cut, especially if you need to provide a quote or estimate before the sale.  Make getting that quote or estimate easy for your potential customers: answer comments and messages that come through social media quickly, add a contact button to your Facebook page, and include your contact information to your profile picture (or hire experts that can).

Your customers expect you to answer them within a few hours of their message, so be ready to answer and use these customer service tips to complete the transaction.  If your customer is sending you a message via social media, don’t make them work hard to get information; try to answer them on their chosen form of communication, social media, and give them the option to call if needed.

Create clear call-to-actions in your content

If you’re taking advantage of all the benefits of a solid content marketing effort (and you should be), include a clear call-to-action in your content.  Your call-to-action doesn’t always have to be a hard-sell to get results (sales), use subtle call-to-actions as well (i.e. for more information, to find out more, etc.) Make sure your content is sharable as well, so your potential customers can share it easily.

Of course, you can’t get customers to click on your content unless you’re producing regular, relevant, and high-quality content. (More about the essential elements of high-quality content here.)  Use strong headlines and images to make your content stand out and, ultimately, catch your customers’ attention.

Use strategic videos.

Video is becoming a powerful tool in the business marketing tool box, especially when it comes to social media.  Social media platform after platform is giving organizations more options for posting videos.  Take advantage of it; produce videos that entertain and inform with a clear call-to-action.  Remember, that not every video has to be professionally produced.  When appropriate, videos from a mobile device can serve as a personal “insider view” into your business (and products and services).

Use social media reviews as social proof.

Today’s customers find you through online searches, and choose your business through online research—including your social media channels.  Since your business is consistently striving to provide excellent customer service, now it’s time to be rewarded for it.  Use those excellent social media reviews (from your excellent customer service) as social proof, one of the top reasons customers give as a deciding factor in choosing a business.

If you get a negative review, go out of your way to reach out to the customer (invite them to discuss details through a private message) and resolve the customer’s issue (more tips on online customer service here).  Showcase your responsiveness and excellent customer service—two key factors that’ll bring new customers in the door.

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