Facebook. Pinterest. Twitter. The truth of the matter is, we’re all still figuring out this, “social media as marketing” thing. Obviously it doesn’t help that new social media platforms keep popping up – or that the ones we do know seem to change their formats every other week – but there are a few general guidelines you should keep in mind when you’re looking to increase customer conversion rates and optimize your social media presence for sales.
Let’s look specifically at Facebook because, despite all of those newcomers trying to crowd the market, it’s still the biggest and baddest one out there.
1. Facebook isn’t a marketplace
What do you do on Facebook? If you’re like most people, you’re on Facebook to engage with your friends, your community, and waste time. You’re most likely not on Facebook to shop, and neither are your customers.
The beauty of Facebook is its ability to create community and build a solid base of fans who publicly support your product. Customers are coming to learn more about your product, to find out what other people are saying about your product, and then to get support after they’ve made a purchase or signed up for your service.
They’re not there to buy stuff, so how can you convince them that’s what they want to do?
2. The passive approach
The most obvious way that you can use this community to your advantage is the passive approach: you hope that those “likes” from your existing customer base will translate into their friends checking out your product and then maybe making some purchases. That’s classic customer evangelization, right?
3. Keep your content interesting
But building that community is about more than just having a good product. You need to make sure your current customers are engaged and checking out your page on the regular if your company is going to have any kind of community around it.
Your company’s landing page on Facebook should be engaging and include fun info about your company and about the industry in general. You probably spend a decent amount of time reading articles that are related to what you’re doing, right? Post them on your Facebook! Chances are, if you’re interested in them, so are your customers.
Another tried and true strategy is responding to user comments on your wall. Don’t let comments languish: respond to criticisms and compliments. This shows people that your company cares about customer service and engagement.
4. But let’s be a little more active about it…
If you’re not satisfied with the passive approach, give people a reason to make purchases. Offer specifics promotions that are only available on Facebook and advertise them on your site and in your newsletter. Make it easy for people share the promotion on their wall or through private messages and you’ll see a clear connection between Facebook and sales conversions.
When used properly, Facebook can be an excellent marketing tool, keeping you connect with current customers and expanding your reach into new markets, so what are you waiting for? Get posting, start talking, and watch Facebook work its magic.