Having thousands of followers on IG and Facebook sure looks great. It gives your brand visibility and reach. It can also be a sign of trust and credibility, especially when you have a good engagement. But what’s the point of all your likes, shares, and high follower count if they don’t really translate into sales? Fortunately, social media can be a great way to build relationships and convert followers into customers.
In this guide, we’ll discuss the best practices for turning your social media followers into customers so you can make the most out of your online presence. Let’s get started!
Analyze Your Current Content
The first thing you’d need to do is analyze your current content. This will give you an insight into what your existing followers are interested in and tailor your strategies according to it. Some of the questions you can ask yourself are the following:
Which Posts Have Generated the Most Engagement?
Whether it’s a meme related to your industry, an aesthetic product photo, or a promotion you ran, your posts with the most engagement can tell you a lot about what kind of content appeals to your followers. Try to analyze the pattern of the posts you received a lot of engagement for and replicate it.
Which Posts Have Generated the Most Leads/New Followers/Impressions to Non-Followers?
The thing is, not all engagements lead to an action. You can have thousands of likes and comments, but very few of those actually hit the follow button or check out your store’s website. Analyzing your content’s performance can help you determine what kind of posts result in clicks and conversions. Marketing and CRM tools like HubSpot have ad tracking features that can help you easily monitor which of your boosted posts are getting you real leads and customers.
Create Content With Your Primary Buyer Persona in Mind
After determining what type of content tickles your followers’ fancy, you can move on to creating content with your primary buyer persona in mind. Go back to your customer avatar, and assess what kind of content they would like to see. Are they more visual or text-oriented? What kind of stories do you think would resonate with them? How can you use storytelling in your posts to make them feel connected to your brand?
These are just some questions you need to ask yourself when creating content for your buyer persona. Once you have the answers, use them as a guide when crafting your posts.
Avoid Making Them Feel Like You’re Just Selling Something to Them
An average US citizen is exposed to around 4,000 to 10,000 marketing messages on a daily basis. This means, when your followers come across your posts, they already have a jaded attitude towards marketing messages.
Thus, this is your reminder to avoid making them feel like every post is just a sales pitch. Yes, the ultimate goal is to generate sales through social media, but you wouldn’t want to come across as too aggressive or pushy.
Frame Your Content As Something Valuable for Them
One way to keep them interested and coming back is to frame your content as something valuable they can gain from it. Instead of giving a direct sales pitch, provide them with helpful tips and information that they can use. For instance, if you’re selling custom shirts to college students, you can create Pinterest or IG mood boards that subtly showcase your items while giving them outfit inspos at the same time.
You can also create TikTok videos with outfit styling hacks or quick tips to help them maximize their wardrobe. The possibilities are endless, and it’s all up to you how creative you can get with your content while adding value to your followers.
Make the Content With Their Perspective in Mind
Put yourself in their shoes and think of content from their perspective. What kind of information would be useful for them? What type of visuals do they prefer? These questions can help you come up with content that they can relate to and engage with.
If you want to take this a step further, you can survey or interview your followers about what kind of content they would like to see from your brand. This will give you better insights into how to create content that meets their needs and wants.
Leverage User Generated Content
UGC or user-generated content can also be a great way to boost engagement. These may come in the form of reviews, stories, or pictures shared by your followers featuring your product or service. This shows that there are people who have already experienced your brand and are willing to tell others about it.
Here are some ways you can generate and leverage UGC:
Recognize Your Top Fans
Got avid followers that have been sharing and heart-reacting to your posts? Let them know you see and appreciate their support! You can do this by awarding them a top fan badge (if you’re on Facebook) or creating a special post thanking them for their support. You can also provide incentives such as discount vouchers to top-performing followers to encourage others to do the same while giving them a reason to actually purchase from your store.
Launch a Giveaway Campaign
Giveaway campaigns are the perfect way to increase engagement and attract new followers. Not only will these campaigns give you an opportunity to show appreciation for your current followers, but it can also bring in new ones.
Just make sure to set clear rules and guidelines for the giveaways so there won’t be any confusion. For example, you can require participants to tag their friends and follow your page before they can join the giveaway. Or, you can ask them to post photos of themselves wearing or using your products.
Create Your Own Branded Hashtag
Creating your own hashtag is a great way to build brand identity and grow your following on social media. This can help customers easily find your content as well as enable you to track UGC related to your brand.
When creating a hashtag, make sure that it is easy to remember and relevant to your brand. Your hashtag should also be unique to avoid any confusion with other brands or companies.
Work With Micro-Influencers
Micro-influencers may have fewer followers compared to mega or macro ones but they can be helpful in terms of getting your brand noticed. This is because they are more likely to engage in a two-way conversation with their followers and have better chances of evoking idea exchanges, word of mouth, and actual purchases.
Repost and Share Posts You’re Mentioned In
Finally, the easiest way to leverage UGC is to repost and share content in which you are mentioned. By doing this, you can show appreciation for your followers who are talking about your brand while also showing your other followers that you have actual customers.
Reach Out in DM’s and Offer Promotions
Another great way to increase engagement and turn your followers into purchasing customers is to reach out in direct messages and offer promotions.
Not only will this give your followers an incentive to purchase from you, but it can also show them that you care about their opinions. You can even create customer loyalty programs wherein loyal customers will be rewarded with discounts, vouchers, or exclusive promos.
Just make sure that when you slide into their DMs, you don’t come off as too salesy or pushy. Instead, use a friendly tone that tells them that you appreciate their support and want to reward them for it.
Show the Behind the Scenes of Your Business
There are people who get enticed by the thought of discovering what goes on behind the scenes of a business. Showing your followers sneak peeks of your products or services before they are released on the market can increase engagement and make your followers more interested in what you have to offer.
If you use print on demand, and therefore don’t take part in the manufacturing and shipping portion of your business. You’re probably wondering how you can create engaging content for social media.
Some forms of content you can use to give your followers a glimpse of what goes on behind the scenes of your POD business are:
If you’re targeting followers with shorter attention spans, then IG Reels can be a great way to capture their interest. These short and quirky videos that range from 15-30 seconds are a great way to show your followers what goes on behind the scenes in an entertaining way. For instance, if you sell customized tote bags with digitally printed illustrations, you can record a short reel of the artist working on creating the design.
Of course, the most common and easiest way to show the behind the scenes of your business is through pictures. You can post pictures of your team working together, setting up your online shop or reviewing samples from different providers for new products you want to offer. These posts can be either candid shots or posed ones and are a great way to give your followers an idea of what it takes to run a business.
For a more personal touch, you can also post photos of yourself at work or even working from home. This will make your followers feel more connected to you and your brand, making them more likely to purchase from you.
Create Strong CTA’s
The “what now?” factor is crucial when trying to drive sales. You need to make sure that your followers know what their next steps should be and give them a strong call to action. There’s no point in crafting and publishing aesthetically pleasing content if your followers don’t know what to do with it.
Here are a few tips for creating slam dunk CTA’s:
Be Clear and Concise
Ever come across an ad that’s trying to sell you something, but it’s not clear what they’re actually selling? That’s a problem. The same goes for your content. You need to be clear and concise with what you want your followers to do. Whether you want them to sign up for your newsletter or purchase an item, make sure that you spell out exactly what you want them to do.
Use Actionable Words
As you do the step above, make sure that you use actionable words to direct your followers. Don’t beat around the bush, be direct. For instance, if you want your followers to check out your new collection, use words like “discover more”, “take a look” and “shop now”.
Add Emojis But Don’t Overdo It
Long, winding captions can be overwhelming and tedious to read. To make it more visually appealing, add emojis but don’t overdo it. Using too many can distract readers from the actual message you’re trying to send.
For instance, before the link to your collection, you can add an emoji like “👉” to direct the attention of the reader to the URL and encourage them to click.
Never Forget to Add Your Links
Speaking of links, make sure to always add them in! Nothing is more frustrating than clicking on a caption or bio link and not being directed anywhere. Your followers should be able to access information with ease, so make sure that all your links are working properly.
Remember that Instagram and TikTok captions are not clickable, so create links in your bio or stories and direct them to those links so they can take action.
Looking at your followers as potential customers and using social media to drive sales doesn’t have to be complicated or overwhelming. By creating content that actually speaks to and resonates with your audience, you can ensure that your followers have your brand top of mind when they’re ready to make a purchase!
For more POD tips, make sure to check out the Awkward Styles blog!
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