To be successful in any industry, you must understand who your customers are and how to reach them. Once you know who it is you are targeting, you can then decide how best to present your business and where your marketing will be best received.
A company who sells cuddly toys, for example, should probably avoid putting adverts in a corporate business magazine. Equally, if you’re a financial advisor who is trusted to handle people’s financial affairs, then avoid developing a website that’s a mixture of cat videos and selfies.
Once you can pinpoint exactly who your customers are, the next most important thing is to have a conversation with them. Perception is absolutely critical when it comes to beginning that conversation, so you need to be sure that what you are sharing and discussing with your audience are the kinds of things that:
- They want to hear
- Will make them want to buy from you
But you may be thinking: ‘I have a huge target audience. How could I possibly speak to every single person one by one?’
If you were having conversations with every potential client it would probably take you forever to speak to them all.
The good news is: with social media, you can speak to people in your target audience every day and it’s almost as if you were speaking to people individually.
It saves you time and all you need to do is post regular relevant and high-quality social media updates on your social media channels.
The key is to not to just share anything and everything but to share content your customers (and potential customers) will love.
Use social media to interact
The most significant thing you can do on social media is post interesting updates FOR your customers and potential customers, and not just bombard them with information about what you do, or how much it costs. Remember, this is a conversation and not a lecture.
If you’re an accountant, people probably (DEFINITELY) won’t want to hear the intricate details about how you do their taxes. Who cares? As long as it’s done, the process is irrelevant to most business owners. However, if you’re sharing tips on how someone can grow their business, this is a powerful message that people can take away and engage with.
Think about creating your own unique content
Social media is a great tool for sharing valuable content. In fact, one of the major positives of using it as a marketing tool is that it becomes the link to the more detailed content you share elsewhere. We would always encourage our clients, and anyone in business, to consider bringing together regular blog content for their website.
Not only are there SEO benefits, it is also the best way to present in-depth information. Your social media can then become the gateway for those who are interested in learning more, with updates presented cleanly and concisely to encourage a click-through.
Above all else, it should be your ambition to be valuable to your customers and target audience. Be selfless with what you share. We are all so focussed around money and closing leads, that we sometimes forget the age-old principle that ‘people buy from people’.
Present yourself as someone who is committed to sharing information that will help those who read it. If they reciprocate by buying from you, then great, but that should come as a result of your social media efforts, and not be your main focus.
We live in such a fast-moving world, that sometimes we forget traditional values. Once upon a time, people ‘courted’ one another. They would share their information and, gradually over time, grow closer and closer until a proposal was made and accepted. These principles can easily be adjusted for a corporate environment.
When you first meet your customer you might give them a gift, such as a link to an important webinar or a free e-book. They, in turn, will share a bit about themselves, so that you can feel closer to them. Once you have these details, you can arrange to send them something again, so that you can continue to see one another. You don’t rush (who proposes on their first date?!?!) and instead wait until just the right time to propose the sale. It takes time, but the rewards make it worth it.
Look the part
We mentioned briefly the idea of perception and how critical it is when trying to interact with your customers. You need to look the part and make sure that your brand is perceived to have the right characteristics in the updates you share. Whether that is a focus on high quality, friendliness, professionalism or confidence; whatever it is, your updates must reflect that brand message.
Equally, the type of content you share can help present you in a certain light. If you want to be seen as a modern, progressive company, then posting a mixture of videos, articles and images will show that you have a good grasp on technology. It also gives you a chance to be diverse in the topic you choose. One week you could offer top tips, another seminar exerts. You could use infographics too, and share everything in slightly different, but contemporary ways.