Social Media: Where to Start
Social media involves marketing, branding, selling and so much more. But what is a boutique business owner to do? Where do you start?
First, let’s look at the bigger picture - Why Social Media?
When you take a look at the numbers—33% of millennials prefer social media communication. Studies show that 96% of small business owners utilize social media to convey their message. When it comes to Pinterest, over 90% of their users use the platform to plan their purchases. The bottom line? You want to be where your customers are located.
With over 60 different social media platforms, it may be difficult to know where to focus. Let’s look at the top social media platforms that are considered good partners for a retail store (regardless if its a brick-and-mortar, eCommerce, or click-and-mortar).
Facebook Choosing to have a business presence on Facebook might be the easiest choice since most people have a personal page and already interact on FB. But keep in mind, just because you post something, it isn’t guaranteed to generate sales. Facebook is considered as the largest social network in the world, being the first to pass 1 billion user accounts. Fortunately, Facebook has many integrations and apps associated with the platform to assist with selling, networking, marketing, and advertising. There are approximately 1.59 billion active users monthly.
If Facebook isn’t your style, there are alternatives , you will just want to do the proper research to be sure your customer is on one of these platforms.
Instagram Instagram is designed to be a social media platform that enables users to communicate through sharing pictures and videos. With different filters, telling your story and evoking emotion through images is the success to a business account on Instagram. Because of Instagram’s use of video, Instagram Stories is another successful way to share content with your audience. With approximately 400 million active users monthly, Instagram is a great tool to build your brand story visually and can guide your audience through your brand’s journey.
Twitter Don’t think about Twitter as only a newsfeed or political platform, think of it as a micro blogging platform. Twitter posts, also known as Tweets, are brief stories (140 characters) that can contain hashtags (#), pictures, and links. You can gain three times the engagement on Twitter if you use a visual with the post. With that said, you can successfully use Twitter to boost traffic to your fashion store. Twitter has approximately 328 million active users monthly.
Pinterest Pinterest is an online creative pinboard and visual-bookmarking social media. The site allows you to build boards, collect visual ideas, and cohesively keep it all in one location. Boards can be set as private or public, letting you choose if you would like other people to pin (share) or like your posts. Private boards can be assigned for specific people to see and can be used as a collaborative creative pinboard. If you have not used Pinterest before, create an account and see all the creative opportunities awaiting. Pinterest is a great way to market and brand your boutique along with its opportunity for paid ads.
Snapchat Snapchat is one of the newest members of social media platforms, but has dominated due to its unique structure. Snapchat is an instant messaging platform to chat and share live stories. The posts are called Snaps and these Snaps can be viewed for up to 10 seconds before they disappear. Snapchat is playful and interactive with many filters. One of their most popular filters, face swapping, has become popular with all ages. Similar to other social media sites, Snap offers business pages, paid ads and the ability to build your brand message. Over 10 billion videos are viewed on Snapchat every day. There are approximately 300 million active users monthly.
The Digital Donut sums up the why social media marketing is important for your business:
Improve Brand Awareness
Build Brand Engagement with Your Customers
Enhance Brand Loyalty
Healthier Customer Satisfaction
Build Marketplace Awareness
Increase Brand Authority
Enhance SEO (for eCommerce)
Social media is essential to developing your brand, marketing, and the promotion of your boutique. Focusing on specific items will be your key to success. What are your resources? What are your objectives? Be prepared to have your plan and goals mapped out prior to jumping in.
Join us for this ongoing series on social media. We will dig deeper on the successes, pitfalls and opportunities when using social media with your business.