Every day, Facebook and Instagram helps hundreds of thousands of small businesses around the world to achieve their goals. Here are the ways you can grow your business, starting today.
Start the Conversation
What’s important to your customers? What engages them? Start the conversation and find out. Not only is engagement proven to make customers more likely to buy, it also helps brands build up a loyal community, keeping you in touch with what people think, want and buy. One should keep the conversation flowing on its popular Facebook Page, where it shares daily fashion tips, news and humor with a loyal fan base.
Want people to follow your Page or buy your product? Give them a good reason to take action. Competitions and offers can help businesses reach wider audiences and gain new customers often within a short period of time. Personalized gift. A study found that it could gain shares and new fans, then convert them to customers through Page posts featuring discount codes.
Make your Customers Part of your Story
Happy customers are your ultimate business asset. By encouraging customers to share their feedback on your products and services, not only do you deepen engagement and build trust, you’ll also have the opportunity to reach wider audiences. Adding the Reviews function to its Page had a knock-on effect on sales, with positive reviews encouraging web traffic and conversions.
Give Video a Try
With around 8 billion video views on Facebook daily, it’s clear that video is winning in the engagement stakes. Don’t be put off by big brands’ high budget productions, though; homegrown video can work just as well. A spur-of-the-moment iPhone video resulted in a huge sales spike when accessories retailer Krystellie filmed and posted a short how-to video on its hair extension products.
Find New Audiences
A loyal following is a great starting point for growth. You can find and reach new audiences who are exactly like the kinds of people who are already your customers. Lookalike audiences can be created from your existing customer data, meaning that you can reach people with an interest in your product or service easily. This makes advertising on Facebook less of a guessing game and way more cost effective than traditional channels.
More than 600 million people use Instagram every month. It’s the second-most popular social media network out there, after Facebook, and offers your business a trendy and hip platform to communicate with prospective customers and increase brand awareness.
But simply throwing out a picture snapped on your smartphone and posting it isn’t going to get you very far. With 600 million other users on Instagram, you need to work to stand out.
Be an Active Participant on the Platform
Rule #1 of any social media strategy is to be more than just a publisher of content. You need to be involved.
On Instagram, that means a few things:
- Follow other people, brands and influencers
- Engage in the comment section of your posts and other’s
- Publish the awesome content of prospective customers and @mention them
Stick With One Branded Theme
Branding is a big part of content creation, and that goes for social media as much as it does your blog (maybe more).
People are more comfortable with your brand if they recognize it. You’ll grow more quickly, have better brand recognition and recall, and will come across as more professional than if you just throw out your posts willy-nilly.
Incorporate Trending Topics in Your Posts
Going with what’s trending is a best practice on social media in general. If you can tap into what people are already thinking about, you’ll get a serious leg up when it comes to social engagement.
Use a Hashtag Contest
Instagram Hashtag contests are one of the quickest and easiest ways to drive new Instagram followers as well as get user-generated content you can use down the line.
Essentially, Instagram users are given an incentive (the chance to win a prize) in return for Following your Instagram page and submitting a photo via the use of a hashtag.
All photos which are tagged with your contest hashtag are automatically populated into your contest page (this only works with a third-party contest builder, by the way). People who have submitted a photo then encourage their friends and social network to vote on their submission, and whoever gets the most votes wins the prize.
Include Video Content
This is a bit of a delicate one, because the last thing I want you to do is recommend you upload video to Instagram if it’s not up to a certain standard. Nothing communicates unprofessionalism as fast as poor sound and video quality.
That said, if your business has invested in creating great videos (as you should), with a studio, green screen, lapel mic and good camera, then video is the way to go. It gets more engagement than images and, conversely to what I said above, nothing communicates legitimacy and professionalism as fast as great video.
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