These days, you’d be hard-pressed to find someonewho hasn’t fully embraced social media. From small children to senior citizens, everyone enjoys connecting with their close friends and family members through such popular channels as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest. Not surprisingly, businesses of all sizes have hopped aboard the social media bandwagon in recent years. However, despite the fact that most businesses have accounts on various social media platforms, few of them use social media to their full advantage. By putting the following tips into practice, you can grow your business through the web’s most popular social media outlets.
Hold Frequent Promotions
Nothing energizes a customer base like a good promotion. Sales events, sweepstakes and other fun promotions are practically guaranteed to excite your regular customers while attracting a bevy of new business. With the help of Facebook and Twitter, entrepreneurs can carry out promotional events in a simple and stress-free manner. Common social media promotions entail giving out prizes for captioned photos or entertaining stories about your business. The entries that receive the most Facebook “likes” or Twitter “favorites” are subsequently named the winners. Since participants will encourage friends, family members and casual acquaintances across the social media spectrum to support their entries, a sizable array of new people will be exposed to your business. Depending on how many Facebook friends or Twitter followers an entrant has, a single share or re-tweet can bring the existence of your establishment to the attention of hundreds, if not thousands, of prospective customers. According to Adweek, three quarters of consumers rely on social media outlets to influence their purchasing decisions, so if you’re eager to bring in more foot traffic, you can’t go wrong with an online promotion.
Provide Regular Updates
When maintaining social media accounts, most businesses make one of two mistakes: they either update too often or not enough. Posting more than three updates a day is liable to annoy certain customers, causing them to unfollow you or block your updates. Conversely, updating too infrequently will take you off the radar of many of your followers. With this in mind, limit yourself to between one and three daily updates. This will ensure that your business remains on the minds of your followers without making them feel smothered. Additionally, you’ll want to keep these updates informative. If there’s an upcoming sales event, promotion or other big announcement, make sure your social media followers are the first to know. Posting silly photos of your employees or sharing inconsequential ramblings about your day-to-day operations creates an air of unprofessionalism and will most likely elicit eye-rolls from your followers.
Address Customer Queries
Social media outlets provide business owners with the perfect platform through which to address customer concerns and queries. Whenever you receive a question from a current or prospective customer on social media, make a point of addressing it in a timely and courteous manner. If the question is particularly interesting, consider sharing or re-tweeting it along with your answer. In the digital age, word of mouth spreads faster than ever, thus facilitating the need for prompt, polite customer service. If you take your sweet time answering a query or respond in an impolite fashion, word of your transgression is practically guaranteed to spread, particularly if the offended party has a substantial number of followers.
As the Pew Research Center reports, 74 percent of adult Internet users have social media accounts. This number represents tens of millions of consumers your business can reach through popular social media outlets. Holding frequent promotions, updating your accounts regularly and addressing customer queries will go a long way in expanding your customer base.