Is social media marketing a part of your small business marketing strategy? If not, you are missing a cost effective strategy to reach, convert and retain customers. Consider these statistics about social media and consumer behavior:
- As of January 2020, over 3.6 billion people were using social media worldwide. That’s nearly half the global population — and the number is expected to exceed 4 billion in a few years!
- More than 40% of online shoppers use social media when researching things to buy.
- Social networks are the biggest source of inspiration for consumer purchases, with 37% of consumers finding purchase inspiration through them.
A small business with a polished, coordinated, and thoughtful social media marketing strategy can reach their target audience and improve conversions. Aim for well-planned content that resonates with your customers. Here’s how.
- Set Goals for Your Strategy
To create an effective marketing strategy for your small business, you must first know what you need to accomplish. Set clear and detailed goals that fit into your overall marketing strategy.
You can write SMART goals — specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and temporal — to outline exactly what you want to achieve and when. For example, if you want to sell more products in your store compared to last year, your SMART goal may look like this:
“I want to increase revenue (specific) in the next two quarters (temporal) by selling 30% more products (measurable) compared to last year. Since most of our site traffic comes from social media users (attainable), I’ll post on all social media platforms three times per week to increase engagement and traffic (relevant) to the website.”
With SMART goals, you know exactly what action to take and how to measure the outcome.
- Research Your Customers and Competition
Now that you’ve outlined your goals, you must figure out who you’re marketing to…and who you’re up against. Researching both your customers and your competition is essential in a small business marketing strategy.
You have to know who your customers are before you persuade them to take action.
- Are they using Facebook and Instagram the most, or YouTube and LinkedIn?
- Are they reading your blog or clicking links in your email newsletters?
- What are they buying?
- What are their most frequent questions?
- Who is your target demographic?
Use your knowledge of customer behavior, values, needs, and habits to create a marketing strategy that works.
Likewise, you should get to know your competitors in your industry. Pinpoint local retailers in your area and analyze their marketing tactics. Are they using organic social media posts? Print advertising? Social media ads? The better you know who you’re up against, the easier you can come out on top.
- Develop a Strategy Based on Your Goals and Research
As a small business owner, you likely don’t have a lot of time or money to invest in marketing. That’s why social media is the perfect choice for the bulk of your marketing strategy. It’s free or relatively inexpensive, and as we’ve discussed before, most of your customers are already online. It’s just a matter of meeting them where they are.
Choose the right social media platforms
There’s no sense in using Twitter to market your business if nearly all of your customers use Facebook instead. Some platforms are popular among certain groups of people.
For example, 93% of adults aged 25 to 29 in the U.S. said they use YouTube. Only 38% of adults 65 and older said they use YouTube, but in comparison, only 3% of adults 65 and older use Snapchat. The second age group may not be as familiar with YouTube as the former, but it’s still a noticeable difference compared to the numbers with Snapchat. These demographics vary considerably by location, too, so look for research that applies to your local market.
Create valuable content
Why should your customers follow or engage with you on social media? Give them a reason to stick around with valuable content that speaks to their interests and preferences.
For example, a local furniture retailer may stand out from their competitors by tailoring their social media posts to their audience’s habits. Their customers likely want tutorials on putting together a shelf, or incorporating a new table or chair into their home decor.
Valuable content doesn’t always mean you have to give away something for free or teach your followers how to do something. Behind-the-scenes content that introduces your team to your audience can build trust and loyalty. Fun quizzes or Q&A sessions can entertain and engage social media users. Spotlighting customers and sharing positive reviews can make your audience feel good. All of these benefit your business.
Finally, take advantage of branded content provided by the manufacturers of the products you carry. Most likely, they invest considerable resources into producing highly polished, professional content that you can easily share with your followers.
Tailor content to local audiences
To attract customers in your geographic area, consider localizing your content. You might research which other local retailers your customers prefer, popular local keywords in the area, social media usage habits, and preferred type of content among local audiences.
More than 8 in 10 customers trust and support local businesses, even preferring them over national chains. There’s even better news for small businesses weathering the COVID-19 pandemic: more than half of consumers indicated they’re more likely to buy locally instead of a national retailer during the COVID-19 crisis.
Supporting the local community and remaining loyal to local stores are important to customers now more than ever. Make sure you’re using that to your advantage when forming a marketing strategy for your business.
How Can ThumbStopper Help With My Marketing Strategy?
You juggle many responsibilities as a small business owner. You handle it all, from bookkeeping to human resources to inventory and more. You already have your hands full. Crafting an effective social media strategy can take more time and resources than you have available. That’s why ThumbStopper is the solution for you.
ThumbStopper gathers high-quality, relevant content generated by the brands you sell in your store and publishes it automatically to your own social feed. Because you share similar audiences with the brands you sell, you can leverage their content to engage consumers on social media.
With ThumbStopper, you can work towards your marketing goals using social media without spending hours brainstorming and creating content from scratch. Free up precious time to actually run your own business. That’s what you get with ThumbStopper: more leads, more conversions and better branding at the fraction of the cost of a marketing department.
Ready to let ThumbStopper help you with your marketing strategy? Learn more here.