What makes for a good blog post? A good story for Facebook? A perfect quick quip for Twitter? As the holidays approach, we’re seeing a lot of fairly clunky social media marketing and it’s driven us to ask: What’s a better approach?
We’ve come up with two things that tend to have the most impact on consumers: creative story-telling, and value addition.
A talented writer can weave a tale around almost anything, and can customize it for the wide range of social media avenues open to online retailers. Start there—with a good writer. Your goal should be creativity and engagement. Sell an experience and play on emotion, instead of simply focusing on sales and low prices. Take every idea across your platforms, from direct email marketing, to Pinterest, to Facebook, to your own blog.
Endeavor to use your advertising to tell a story that connects with your customers and makes them feel that your brand is something to be proud of.
Take The North Face for example. When you land on their home page, you’re not greeted with the latest and greatest sale—but with customer-focused content that tells a story of great explorations and adventures. Likewise, their social media is more focused on advancing a story of exploring and evoking the emotion that goes along with that. And it’s exceptionally effective.
Pottery Barn is another example of a company that crafts a tale in the name of inspiring brand loyalty. Their homepage this season puts a decorating guide front and center, evoking the warmth and invitation of a home decked out for the holidays and filled with loved ones. It draws you in and makes you want to recreate that scene within your own home. Again, very effective.
Let’s talk about adding value as a method for engaging customers for a moment. This may seem counter-intuitive, but one of our favorite ways to do this is to avoid focusing on specific products. Instead, focus on conveying knowledge.
Approaches such as these bring value to the customer that tends to pay off in both the short and long terms as you build brand loyalty and pride.
Another way to offer value: gift guides.
We know, gift guides are everywhere, but there’s a reason for that: customers love them. In our fast-paced society, the luxury of browsing through a plethora of brick and mortar retailers searching the perfect gift seems to be behind us. Interesting, off-the-beaten-path suggestions targeted to a specific audience work. They drive sales. And ultimately, that’s the goal.
Want to read more about gift guides? We’ve dedicated an entire blog post to them.
The TL;DR take away here? Focus less on low prices and more on crafting a narrative and providing value for your customers. It’s worth it.