Social Lead: 4 Tips in Converting Social Media Likes into Paying Customers
One of the most repeated jokes I heard in college during the heyday of Facebook was that your Facebook friends aren’t real friends. Even now that we’re two decades into the 21st century, it’s common for people to think of social media platforms as this separate realm, totally disconnected from their actual lives. This has lead to some businesses still insisting on ignoring the practice of social media marketing entirely which is a huge mistake given how big of a role social media has played in our daily lives in the past few years.
I understand that sometimes it can be hard to quantify exactly how much social media can help your marketing efforts and that even with a boatload of likes and followers, they might not always translate well to revenue. For business owners, numbers always speak the loudest and since social media conversions can be a tough nut to crack, it’s not really surprising to see the practice of social media marketing being shunned in favor of conventional ads. This is a shame as when used smartly, social media can be a powerful lead generation tool.
Live by social media, thrive by social media
If there’s any trend I’ve noticed in small business in recent years is that I’m beginning to see more businesses using social media platforms as their primary digital establishment. That is to say it’s quite common for me to see businesses shunning websites entirely and using Instagram as their place of operation. With the wide availability of e-commerce platforms, it’s possible for businesses to simply link their account page from their social media accounts, bypassing the need for websites entirely.
In a way, this is exactly the way influencers work. The likes of Kim Kardashian don’t have a website of their own and yet they continue to rake in all those money simply by first conducting inquiries through direct message (DM). And this isn’t just for influencers, I managed to get in touch with a bespoke jeans maker through Instagram first through by first discovering them through an Instagram ad and making my inquiries through DM. The conversation eventually shifted to iMessage but it all started from Instagram showing that it is very much possible to use social media as a lead generation tool.
Sadly though, businesses tend to focus only on raising their follower and like counts with little thought into how to translate those numbers into cold, hard cash. For influencers, it’s easy to translate follower counts into brand sponsorships since high number means high reach; but for actual businesses relying on selling products and/or subscriptions to make money, that translation process can get a little tricky. To get a started, consider trying out these 4 following tips to convert your like counts into paying customers.
Make sure your landing pages are mobile-friendly
Instagram has made it insanely easy for businesses to integrate their Instagram account with external websites but I’ve seen cases where businesses haven’t properly optimized the landing page for mobile devices. For businesses relying on an e-commerce platform, this issue is pretty much out of your hands but if you’re liking your Instagram account or posts to your website, you want to make extra sure that the linked page is optimized for mobile. I’ve seen cases where even though the website looks fine, nothing literally happens when I click on a specific product category even though the page works just fine on desktop.
Provide customer service on social media
Also from personal experience, I often see cases where a business refuse to answer any questions in their DM and insist on using a messaging platform that I don’t actually use, forcing me to install a new app on my phone if I actually want to talk them. This by the way is a serious mistake. When your follower count is on the millions, it would be unreasonable to expect you to follow up on every single queries from your DM but if the number is still manageable, don’t force your customers to use a different platform just to talk to you if it’s just a simple query.
Try your hand on user-generated contents (UGC)
They’re called social media platforms for a reason; because they perform a social function. This means that they should be used to facilitate a two-way communication those in the business like to refer to as engagement and UGC is one way for you to increase engagement. Think of this as the domino effect. By encouraging your followers to post certain things about you, their followers would then be informed of your business, potentially increasing your reach considerably every time this chain is pushed further along. Just make sure that the original user is always credited when you’re using their content for your own social media feed.
Dig into analytics and always try to improve
One of the current trends in social media marketing is the use of split tests. In these tests, businesses run two pretty similar campaigns to see which is performing better. By performing this split test iteratively, you could narrow down just what specific elements in your campaigns or posts that resonate the most and use the data you’ve gathered to start a newer, more optimized campaign. It’s very rare for a company to catch lightning in a battle the first time round, but perhaps by tweaking the bottle bit-by-bit with each iteration, you could raise your chances each time you start a new campaign.