If you’re like a lot of business owners, you probably think the idea of using social media to attract new customers has been a bit overblown. This is almost certainly true if you’re a builder, contractor or some other type of tradesmen. Many simply can’t imagine that social media would be effective for their marketing needs. Others have given social media a try but quickly called it quits when they didn’t see results.
Whichever category you fall into, it’s important to understand what you need to know about social media in order for this potent approach to really work.
Each Platform Has Its Own Language
One mistake a lot of small business owners make is trying to conquer many social media networks at once. They start a Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Pinterest account on the same day and get busy trying to drum up new business.
Of course, nothing happens.
To some degree, they may be spreading themselves too thin. However, it’s just as much because they’re not taking the time to learn about the language of each social media network.
For example, on Facebook, most people are looking to browse around, socialize with friends and family, post comments, like/share things, and read/see videos and pictures that are funny, interesting or even adorable.
Believe it or not, there is plenty of opportunities there for any of the aforementioned professionals to find new customers. I’ve seen it firsthand.
However, that type of user is completely different than the kind who jumps on Twitter. Even when this is the same exact person, they’re wearing different hats. You need to understand these differences and proceed accordingly.
Social Media Is Not the End of Your Sales Funnel
This is another huge mistake that often tarnishes the reputation of social media in the eyes of many business owners. Your social media presence shouldn’t be where you make the sale. Very few people are going to make a purchasing decision on a single picture, post or 140 characters of copy.
Instead, you should use your social media presence to first gain people’s interest and build your authority in the market. A successful social media campaign should result in people wanting to contact you because they’re convinced you can help and are excited about the opportunity.
Quality > Quantity
This should be common sense, but on social media, it’s nearly impossible to resist the siren call of having countless followers. If you see a competitor with hundreds more than you, it’s tough to ignore that and stay focused on your goals.
Here’s the thing, though: it’s easy to get a huge “audience” on social media. You can actually go out and pay people to beef up your profile.
Those people will never become customers, though.
Instead of worrying about how many people follow you, you should be more concerned about how much engagement you’re seeing. Pay attention to which posts get comments and clicks. Those are the ones you should be creating more of. Of course, you should also be engaging right back with your potential customers.
You Have to Provide Quality Content
Twitter is an amazing tool. There’s no doubt about it. The same goes for Instagram. What these and other social media platforms lack, though, is space to really provide quality content – not that this has hurt their success.
Facebook gives you much more space to provide meaningful content, but we’d still recommend you keep a separate blog on your company’s site. This isn’t the type of thing you need to update every single day. It is the type of thing you can use to show potential customers your expertise, though.
For example, if you’re a contractor, you could explain the various pieces that go into a big project like adding a deck. Do this right before summer hits and many of the people interested in this type of project may wind up hiring you for the job.
If you’d like to learn more about how social media can increase your reach and help you find new customers, subscribe to Your Cyber Partner’s blog. I regularly publish helpful pieces just like this one that are full of proven tips.