Facebook. Twitter. Pinterest. Instragram. Whereever you go people are talking about a picture they saw on Facebook, a funny video on YouTube or an amazing photo they found on Pinterest, but why is social media so popular, and how can social media marketing help your business thrive?
Creating a Bond is Key to Successful Social Media Marketing
Think of it this way, although the Internet is making the world smaller by the day, people are spending less time together in person. However, they are spending more time connecting electronically via social media. To prove the point, think of how you or your family members have connected with long lost friends through social media, something that would otherwise have been much less likely to occur.
Regardless of the social media channel used to contact each other online, we all have a human need for “real” relationships. No one wants to say, “Hey, check out this product that this (nameless) guy on Facebook told me about.” No, they want to say, “Check out what my friend recommended.” Your clients will be much more loyal and dedicated if they feel they can trust you as their friend to provide the best quality products and solutions for them. So knowing this, how can you turn your clients into friends?
The basic answer is simple. Create a bond that makes your clients know you care about them and are not taking them for granted. One way to do this is to offer special perks to friends of the company (for example, to those who have “liked” your Facebook page or opted in to your other social media). These perks don’t have to break your bank, but they can go a long way to solidifying a bond that inspires brand loyalty.
Testimonials and Likes are Good for Your Business and Your Customers
If a client shares information about your business on Facebook or Twitter or goes out of their way to provide a testimonial, consider featuring it on your Facebook page. It shows your clients that you value their input and provides some often-appreciated attention. Responding to and implementing their suggestions drives home the fact that you and your company care about what they have to say, and therefore take their suggestions seriously.
Another way to create a bond is to show your loyal customers you value their business by offering them special pricing. For example, if they paid $2.99 a month for your newsletter subscription in the past, consider locking in that rate for a long time to come (and letting them know about the special rates they are receiving each time your regular price increases). Their loyalty to your business can be worth many times the “cost” of discounts.
Create Rewards Programs with Real Benefits
Demonstrate your appreciation for your clients by creating a rewards program that provides REAL benefits. Nothing miserly like “60 days money back instead of 30.” Instead, consider offering complimentary services, discounts or other tangible, valuable prizes or rewards.
One potentially low-cost way to provide a valued reward is to team up with other non-competing companies who offer services related to yours that will benefit your clients. Own a photography studio? Work out special pricing arrangements with make-up artists and hairstylists you trust, and then send special offers on those related services to your clients. Share the spotlight with your network of related service providers and ask them to do the same for you in an effort to turn their friends into your friends, and vice-versa.
Gratitude Can be the Best Marketing Strategy
Most importantly, be grateful for your new friends. Show them regularly how much you value them and they will reciprocate. Be creative and let your personality show, whether it’s donating to your favorite client’s charity of choice, giving away a free product or service, or just by saying, “Thank you for your support”. Your clients will appreciate it and in turn will remain loyal, spread the word about your company, and will often choose your brand over an equally good competing brand just because they like you.
Make it Personal
Remember, your clients may respond well to an offer to connect connect with you and your business in a more personal way. Using social media marketing to develop a stronger bond can give current and future clients the confidence to choose your business over the competition.
Want to learn more? Contact us for assistance in developing a creative social media marketing strategy to help grow your business.