Especially for young people, social networks are the square of the city today. Users log in to receive gossip and news, but they also go there to shop.
However, as with the squares of the real city, a crier is needed to draw attention to social networks. Although 64% of consumers want brands to connect with them, according to the 2019 #BrandsGetReal report of Sprout Social, very few are proactive about it. An astonishing 96% of people who talk about brands on social media don’t follow them.
Social networks can be full of sales opportunities, but taking advantage of them requires more than a Facebook brand page. You need a team of town criers, each trained and ready to talk to you.
Where social sellers go wrong
Too many companies attract their sellers or influencers on social networks without preparing them for success. The following mistakes are sure ways to fail with social sales:
1. Do not set brand standards
Whether you touch the members of your own team or trust outside influencers, you cannot expect them to know exactly how it should be mentioned online. Although social platforms differ in terms of content format and audience, the standards must be applied regardless of where a conversation occurs.
Structure your standards in terms of actions, particularly if your vendors are not part of your core team. Nu Skin’s social media guidelines provide its independent consultants with two specific things not to do about your product and profit claims. For visual students, the beauty and wellness brand includes screenshots to show how appropriate (and not appropriate) brand publications look online.
2. Leaving multimedia out of the mix
Low-effort content doesn’t grab attention on social media. Although text publications have their place, consumers want to see evidence: How does the product work? Where does it fit in your life? Are your friends using it? Data-driven video tactics help social marketers answer those questions quickly and specifically for the audience.
Visual content also doesn’t need to be a huge production. If you don’t have the budget to hire a video marketing agency, think of alternatives. Beauty brand VerveGirl won 1,400 user-submitted videos in two weeks simply by running a makeup tutorial contest. For infographics, consider contest sites like 99designs, which lets you pick a winner from hundreds of entries.
3. Put quantity on quality
Social selling may seem like a matter of breadth, but there is a reason why brands should choose micro-influencers over their mega-influential peers: nearly two-thirds of consumers prefer small-scale interactions online.
Although you may have enough vendors and vendors on your team to cover your major social media platforms, ask yourself if they are too close to your business. For some campaigns, such as selling B2B services on LinkedIn, you may need internal knowledge and credibility. In consumer spaces like fashion, that distance is desirable because it creates a sense of authenticity.
4. Take a comprehensive approach
Instagram and YouTube may be the top two platforms in terms of influencer marketing investment, but that doesn’t mean they are the right choice for each brand. Both platforms attract young audiences, on the one hand, turning them into poor places to reach middle-aged adults or older people.
Before sending your social army, consider who uses each social media platform. Choose a primary site and, if budget allows, a secondary site. If you can only afford one and have a general audience, Facebook has the most appeal in terms of age, race, and gender.
5. Neglect parenting
What happens after a user sees their content on social networks? If you are lucky and have established a clear click path, you can get a sale. Most likely, it has raised awareness. What you do with it dictates if that initial interest becomes something else.
Include a link to your site in each social publication. At the destination of that link, use a lead capture tool. Although white paper content works best in the B2B space, B2C companies can also link social posts with assets on the site. REI’s #ForceOfNature campaign is a great fit for his blog and infographic. To comment on or subscribe to the REI newsletter, visitors have to share their email address, giving the outside brand an opportunity to close a sale.
Turning online attention into real income is easier said than done. You might make new friends with those nifty Facebook posts, but there’s more to the story if you want to sell. Both in yesterday’s squares and in today’s social platforms, the secret is the configuration. Reaching the right people on the right platforms with the right messaging is how social selling works.