Social Media Marketing for Retail

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Is now the time to start?

As Napoleon once declared, the British are ‘a nation of shopkeepers’ and it is as true in 2012 as it was in 1815. Local stores always find trading conditions difficult – they have had to survive the onslaught of supermarkets and now are facing an almost ongoing recession where people are spending less and less. So this is an ideal time for local retailers to review – or even begin – their social media marketing strategy. An internet marketing agency can offer strategy and training but it is possible to do it DIY style. Done correctly, social media marketing can give you the competitive advantage and customer loyalty that you need to maintain and drive business forward. Here are some quick tips to making your social media marketing work.

  1. Do something everyday. Even if it is only saying ‘hello’, regular postings will help you engage with your customer base.
  2. Offer something. Although marketers liked to believe social media marketing was all about engagement, research (and experience) shows followers like to receive offers, discounts and deals so include these in your strategy.
  3. Think locally. You are part of your community, so talk about local events and activities.
  4. Use photos and video. Research shows that Facebook users respond more often to video and photos so use these when you post. You don’t need Hollywood production values – something relevant caught on you Smart Phone is just as good.
  5. Engage. Social media marketing is not about sales, but engagement so make sure you write posts that encourage response. Ask you followers and ‘Likes’ what they think, or ask for suggestions. You can profitably use them as a testing ground for new ideas, products and services.
  6. Be responsive. You’ll find that customers and potential customers use your Twitter and Facebook pages to ask questions about your goods and services, and the speedier the response the better. Remember, you don’t have to action your social media marketing by yourself. Involve your team – that’s good for them, you’re customers will like it – and that will be good for business.
  7. Show some personality. You can develop the personality and brand of your business by showing some personality in the tone and subject of your Tweets and posts. Don’t go too off track but humour and quirkiness can help develop a loyal following.
  8. Tell you customers. Make sure you tell all your customers about your activity – and the benefits for them off following you.

Social media marketing takes some thought, some work and some commitment but, when trading conditions remain difficult, done well it can offer the competitive advantage to make sure you remain a fixture of the local community for a long time.   If you found this tutorial helpful then please click Like or Tweet or leave a comment. Remember to watch this space as we will be releasing a range of social media marketing blogs over the coming months. Our readers can also find our Opace Facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/OpaceWebDesign. For all the latest goings on, you can keep up-to-date with Opace on Twitter https://twitter.com/OpaceWeb. And we also now have an Opace Googleplus page live at https://plus.google.com/111516148099633923012/posts.

Image credit – Martin Gysler

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