In order to find new potential customers it is important to know where these people are. Fortunately (or unfortunately if your business is not up to speed with modern online marketing trends) the overwhelming majority of people can be found on social media platforms; an observation that is statistically supported.
There are many users who participate in social media across several platforms, not just Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. Social media sites such as Pinterest, Instagram, Snapchat and Google Plus also have millions of users who are just as engaged and active.
Due to this, it is safe to say that social media is currently the optimum forum for mass interaction. However, a presence on social media is not enough.
Businesses and marketers need to know where to find their customers. And this is merely the first step in the social commerce journey! Many marketers who decide to use social media as a means of finding leads, may be confused how to do this when it comes to the actual implementation. But don’t worry, collected beneath are five tips to help marketers and businesses generate leads through social media platforms.
1Have a social media presence for your business
Unfortunately, some businesses are under the misguided idea that if they simply set up a Facebook Page and Twitter account then the fans will quickly follow suit.
This conclusion is erroneous. Simply put no social media users are going to follow a business who makes no effort to engage and interact with their following.
First you should ensure that your business has an account on all the major social media platforms relevant to your target customer. Once this important pre-step has been taken, the hard work begins.
To establish a presence and begin utilising social media networks as a tool to further your business it is important to post content regularly and continually interact with other users.
2Be human, not a robot
One of the key aspects of social media is the social element. People do not sign up to social media platforms so they can be directly advertised to in their leisure time. They join up so they can connect to other interesting human beings across the world around a range of topics of significance to them.
If you want to be accepted by these users you will have to appeal to them as a human. This may produce more difficulties than was initially anticipated.
A good place to start is to make a personal pledge that you will not transform your social media networks into an alternative mailing list.
Instead you should look for ways in which you can begin engaging your followers in conversation. Also, do not be afraid of letting your personal voice come out via your posts and content. In addition, when you receive any comments or feedback, ensure that you respond promptly.
3Provide your following with what they want
As a marketer or business owner you already know what you want from your followers, namely to convert them into actual customers. For the best results you should consider this scenario from the perspective of a potential lead.
Ask yourself, what these possible leads will want. Also consider the fact that if you are not offering anything to them, why would they bother to visiting your website, or become a fan or follower of you on social media? This is the essence of inbound marketing.
If you can work out how to provide perspective customers and leads with what they want, then you will not have to seek them out, instead they will find you.
You should provide your following with interesting and engaging content, which is also informative, but do not ask for anything in return.
A good way of doing this is by setting up a company blog which explores issues, problems and questions which commonly arise from your customer base.
Once this has been done, you should link it back through your various social media pages. When doing this remember to include a visual aspect to your activities.
It has been found that the human brain is far more effective at processing images than it is at processing text. It is well worth playing with infographics, memes, videos and photos to see what provides the best results.
4Link your social media to your CRM and sales
A Customer Relation Management system, or CRM, is becoming a key tool for businesses who wish to maintain good relationships with their customers.
This is done by keeping accurate information about the minute yet important information, details of appointments and other important customer information. The other part of this is ensuring that this information is then accessible.
When your business is using social media as part of its sales process to prospect for leads, ensure that your sales team is up to speed with the facts.
Accumulate information as you proceed and ensure that you have a CRM in place to analyse and share this information with members of your company who require it.
Working in unison with various departments and individuals within your business will ensure that you enjoy more success from the information you have accumulated. Meaning that you will not have to rely merely on the charm of your social media efforts to gain results.
If all other measure fail then do not be afraid to utilise a bit of persuasion. If you really want to gain public support for your brand on social media platforms, then the quickest way to do so is with some persuasion techniques.
This can take the form of a “contest”. Offer social media users the opportunity to enter a prize draw, however in order to enter they must either like or share your content.
If you offer something that people want you will see a large amount of people engaging with you in order to take part.