It opens possibilities that simply didn’t exist before.
This article is an online extra for INSTOREMAG.COM.
Imagine if you could put up a billboard on a busy road with an ad tailored for every individual who drives by, saying that your jewelry store is recommended by one or more of their best friends.
With any kind of static, print media that’s impossible, of course, says Dave Kerpen, author and CEO of Likeable Local, a social media software company. Yet today you have the tools available to do that with social media advertising.
Kerpen offered his take on social media during a recent webinar presented by Jewelers of America and titled, “How to Use Social Media to Increase Holiday Sales.”
Social media ads carry built-in endorsements from friends, making social the most powerful form of advertising, ever. It’s word of mouth on steroids, and word of mouth has always been the best way to advertise.
Seventy-seven percent of people are more likely to buy based on a recommendation from a family member or friend.
To get people to share their good vibes about your company, engage your audience. Ask a question, like, “Wow, what a statement this ring makes! What do you think?”
Both Facebook and Instagram offer a low-cost opportunity to advertise to not only boost the reach of your posts but to target your audience very specifically. You can target your audience to your email list or to a new, lookalike audience that resembles your email list in demographics. You can even target people who work at a big company nearby, by sending them a special offer.
But don’t try to sell something on social media until you establish your brand online. To begin that process, showcase your personality as well as your product. Share photos of staff and customers. “To me, the stories you can tell as a jeweler are way, way better” than in other businesses, Kerpen says. “Tell those amazing stories of engagements, weddings and anniversaries to personalize your business.”
Because people read less these days, use short text updates with engaging photos and videos.
Ask for referrals, too. Even the people who love you are super busy, or they are lazy, Kerpen says. Offer them an incentive to get the word out and make it as drop-dead easy as possible.
Listen and respond to everyone. If you see a negative post or review, rather than freak out or ignore it, react in the most constructive way possible. Respond publicly, indicating you are going to solve the problem privately.
Advertise on social to ensure your updates are seen by your audience. These days, if you aren’t paying to boost your posts only 1 to 2 percent of your fans will see your posts organically.
How often should you post? “If it’s bad content, even one post a year is too much. If it’s great content, post as much as you want. You can tell how people respond to your content. If people are not responding, slow down or change your posting strategy.”
Consider using Facebook Live, a new feature on Facebook that allows you to post live video. You can use it to generate excitement and create offers, like “the first three people in the store will get X.” Because it’s a new feature that Facebook would like to promote, it currently gets a lot of reach, without having to pay for advertising.
Posting photos of merchandise can be great, but it doesn’t make too much sense without a link to an offer for a discount or a gift with purchase. When you post pictures with links to an offer you can also determine more easily what’s working or not working.
To be more efficient at social media, consider using a service or software provider to streamline your posts. In addition to Likeable Local, Kerpen recommends Hug Spot, Post Planner, Buffer and Social Quant.