- Make it personal- Create a campaign that allows customers to interact and is unique to them. ClickZ’s example is the OfficeMax “Elf Yourself” campaign that launched awhile ago and allowed users to insert a picture of themselves on to dancing elves and send it to their friends. Allowing the users customized experience to be shareable will also be beneficial and will help drive customers back.
- Use your human resources- If low on budget or just looking for a different way to interact with customers, you can allow employees to take on a larger role and be the face of your campaign. REI did this by having customers tweet them asking for gift ideas and having their employees respond back with personalized video recommendations. This empowers your employees and gives your company an authentic voice.
- Go mobile- If you are a larger company, you should already have a mobile app, but many smaller start up companies do not yet. E-commerce has been growing constantly and receives a substantial push during the holidays. Utilizing mobile apps and having a good mobile website will allow you to keep the customers attention throughout all platforms. Mobile apps also allow push notifications that can alert customers of deals or let them know when they are near your physical store.
- Make your customers lives easier- Provide your customers something that saves them time or makes something they do easier. HubSpot did this by giving potential customer a free zipfile with a bunch of stock holiday photos that they could use for their social media sites. Customers appreciate the time saver and get a free sample of what your company can do for them.
- Don’t shortchange email- Even though fun and catchy social media campaigns are all the trend, don’t forget about email marketing. Customers still expect to receive great deals through email and sending ads with eye catching visuals and simple, straight to the point copy will get the attention of your customers and hopefully get them on your site. Also, including deals that are online exclusive or offering free shipping are a good way to generate more online sales according to Accenture.
Bianca Rothschild wrote an article for the Huffington Post recently outlining some great tips to improve your social media strategy. My interpretation of them is below.
- What questions are you answering?- Try to relate all your social media posts to questions your audience (customers) want to know. Social media is a tool to connect with customers so they should be your primary focus when posting.
- Establish your brand messaging- All of your posts should represent your brand and what your company stands for. Social media is how a lot of consumers connect with businesses so you want to always be portraying an accurate representation of your company and your brand.
- Create a social media calender and stick to it- It is easy to get distracted by normal day-to-day business issues and neglect your social media campaign. Try to counter act this by creating goals and objectives to hit on a timely basis.
- Be patient- You won’t gain a million followers and have a super successful social media campaign over night. It takes time to build the relationships and attract an audience. Stick with it and focus on the light at the end of the tunnel.
- Monitor and measure what is working- Always be checking how your efforts are being received by your audience. Make sure you know how your efforts are paying off. If you see a certain strategy garnering a lot of attention, keep expanding on it.
- Make pivots when necessary- If one strategy has not been working for a good period of time, try to change it up and go in a different route. If one form of social media seems to not be making an impact while others are, don’t just abandon it, try to adjust your efforts and go at it a different way.
- Pay when possible- One of the biggest benefits of social media marketing is that it is free, but, when you can, take advantage of the increased features that come with paid ads. Paid ads can give your campaign a big boost and gain you a larger audience that can then be exposed to your free content later.
To see Bianca’s full article on the Huffington Post, click here.