Small businesses have been increasingly taking to social media to build relationships with their customers and drive business. There’s a huge consumer base out there that you as a business absolutely should have access to, which is what social networking with your target audience does.
But despite social media being an excellent platform to promote your business and bring in new customers, small businesses have not been exploiting it to their full advantage.
Merely creating a presence on the social media is not going to suffice, nor will incorporating social media plug-ins into your website (though that’s a start!). It takes a lot more to attract customers to you on social media.
I have some suggestions that are guaranteed to set you on the right path.
Make the tastiest burgers you can.
A good job is the best advertisement for your business. Chris Riley, the founder of popular auto community Gear Heads, has this sage advice to offer: “People will only like you on social media if they like you in real life.”
Chris should know. Gear Heads is a vocal, enthusiastic community of auto lovers, with 1.2 million likes on its Facebook page.
The point here is simple. Aim to be the best in whatever you do.
If that means creating the most engaged community around concept cars or flipping burgers in a masterly fashion, so be it. Make your dedication to perfection your USP. Give your customers the best possible experience that you can provide considering your resources, and you will be surprised how far your honest efforts will take you.
When people are happy with you, they are also likely to be great advocates for you. Happy customers take to social media or websites like Yelp to share with others their experiences. And you know what happens next – one person likes you, their friends catch on to it, and so it goes.
Don’t get too caught up in the ‘Like’ game.
Customers liking you should not be confused with them "liking" you on Facebook, though both are equally welcome. While no studies have been carried out on the relationship between customers loving the products and "liking'' the company on its Facebook page but surveys indicate customers aren't easily moved to "like" business pages. The average Facebook user only likes 9.8 company pages, which tend to be big brands like Apple, Domino’s, Google, McDonald’s, etc.
What are the chances of your small business making it to this list? That’s for you to answer. But think of it this way: how many companies do you personally like and how many have you formally given a thumbs-up on their Facebook page?
A silent following is a following, too. Don’t get too caught up in the number of "likes" you receive. Instead, look at the number of subscribers you have and work to expand that.
Give people an incentive to join you. Remember, for anybody to let you into their personal circle, you will have to offer them something of value in return. This could be in the form of useful content, discounts, better customer service or incentives of any other kind.
Create an excellent website that is mobile friendly.
People take their Internet in their pockets wherever they go. If you want to reach the maximum number of people, you have no choice but to make your website mobile-friendly.
Invest in a good website that is user-friendly, contains all the latest information and doesn’t take forever to load. If somebody wants to find you, they should know exactly where to look. A professional-looking website is also reassuring to visitors.
Make your website compatible with all the major web browsers. If you can create an app for your business, awesome! You are dealing with tech-smart people now, so keep up with them to improve your chances of getting into their good books.
A sluggish website with outdated content and a labyrinthine layout loses you people and business.