02 Jun Are your social media posts turning your customers off?
Ask any business why they use social media and the majority would say “to make sales”. That’s fine and fair enough, your business needs to make sales in order to survive, but this laser-focused sales effort is probably doing the exact opposite of what you want it to.
The clue’s in the name
Social media. Your business accounts shouldn’t be an echo chamber of offers, stockists and prices. By focussing entirely on sales you’re alienating the very audience whose attention you want to attract. The internet is filled with adverts and pop-ups, which p*ss people off no end (believe us we’re on the net 9+ hours a day and they’re a huge pain), their social channels are a place for conversation, entertainment, fun and often a source of news too.
Unlike TV ads, consumers can pick and choose the messages they want to see on social media, which means you need to give them a compelling reason for them to follow you – and sales messages simply aren’t going to cut it.
The golden rule of social media posts
Don’t get us wrong, we’re not telling you to stop all sales messages, it’s all about balance…like cake 🍰. This is where the 80/20 rule comes in, your content should be 20% sales and 80% informative, entertaining and educational. It’s not a hard and fast rule, but it’s a good one to consider when you’re planning and posting content.
Adding value is a key consideration here; consumers are looking for value from your posts, that could be in the form of a fact or piece of information that’s useful to them, a recipe or ‘how-to’ guide or a quote or image that they can share with their audience to boost their own profile.
How to fill the gaps
OK, so it’s a pretty daunting prospect suddenly having to fill 80% of your posts without a hard sales message. But it’s easier than you might think, here are a few ideas…
- Blog posts
These are a great source of soft sales content and useful for SEO too!
- Owned content
This can be things like testimonials, recipes or product guides and information
- Third party content
Scour the internet at least once a week for news, blogs and articles that your customers might find interesting – just make sure you credit them correctly!
In moderation and when they’re relevant to your audience memes can be a great tool, just don’t over-meme
- Retweets and shares
Great for building relations with customers, suppliers or industry bodies
- Behind the scenes
Give some insight into the people behind your business, office goings-on or events you’re attending
- Days of the year
There are calendars available online which will give you all of the random things there’s now a day for – if you make paper clips, celebrate #PaperClipDay online!
Two birds with one stone – engagement AND customer research
With good planning and as part of your wider marketing strategy, the 80/20 rule shouldn’t be too difficult and it makes your social media channels a much more varied, interesting and pleasurable place to be around.
Image credit: Luis Miguel Bugallo Sánchez, WikiMedia Commons