If you’ve leveraged the power of social media to drive sales to your ecommerce business, you will be excited to hear this news. Facebook’s unrolling of “Facebook Shops” opens up wide doors of opportunity to go beyond just advertising, and straight into conducting commerce on the premier social media site.
If you haven’t bothered to engage with social media to drum up business for your business, now is a good time to start. Trends indicate the shift in retailing toward online sales is a real deal, made more robust in this unplanned and uncertain time of restricted public movement due to a global pandemic. Analysts predict that once the situation evens out and stores reopen, a significant portion of commerce will continue to occur over the internet. Put simply, the barriers that made many hesitate in the days before Covid-19 are all but shattered.
Enter Facebook, always in search of ways to capitalize on any marketing trend. Their advertising revenues—gained from more than 8 million businesses—have been astronomical, and that in turn has led them to jump in with both feet, offering up a first-line sales platform for ecommerce vendors like you.
This new, cost-free feature allows businesses to set up product listings on their Facebook page, Instagram profile, and in stories or in ads. Future plans include direct sales through chat features of WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, and Instagram Direct. Facebook owns all of these entities.
Creating a strong social media presence has never been easier or more effective.
More and more people are flocking to various social media platforms to connect and share with loved ones. Whether it’s scrolling through a Facebook group or sharing the perfect vacation selfie on Instagram, it’s hard to imagine a world without social media at the forefront.
With billions of users who spend, on average, three hours a day on social media, businesses have a stronger opportunity than ever to target their message to those who are eager to hear it. But with social media trends constantly changing, and so many different marketing options out there, staying on top of the most effective strategies and putting them into practice can be a full time job in and of itself.
Who has time for that when you have a business to run?
Luckily, there are a wide variety of wonderful tools that take the guesswork out of social media marketing while saving precious time. And who doesn’t need more of that?
Let’s look at a few important strategies for any business to thrive, and the social media marketing tools that can help do just that.
Best for Lead Generation - Audiense
Audiense offers a convenient array of tools to help you not only identify your audience, but to zero in on smaller segments within that audience to target your message accordingly. It gives you insights into their personalities and buying habits to help you communicate more effectively. And it provides reports and data to back it all up, making customer engagement a breeze.
Best for Analytics - Facebook Analytics
Facebook continues to dominate as the leading social media platform. Over two-thirds of American adults reported using it in 2019. When it comes to marketing, Facebook Analytics gives you all the tools and statistics you need to analyze what works and what doesn’t. It offers in-depth reporting on the customer process from beginning to end, showing you when, where, and how people are interacting with your content.
Best for Content Creation - Tagboard
Tagboard allows you to search for topics, keywords, and hashtags so you can see what’s trending and what your audience is paying attention to. You can use that information to share popular stories or create fresh, new content based on the things your customers care about. Focusing on what people are actually reading about, rather than just guessing, will help keep your business relevant and get your content more views, likes, and shares.
Best for Chatbots - MobileMonkey
Chatbots help deliver a smooth customer experience by interacting and answering their questions in real-time. MobileMonkey is a free service that makes it easy to set up a chatbot and talk to your customers on messaging apps they’re already using, like SMS and Facebook messenger. To make things even simpler, it allows you to type out your chat content once, then use it across different platforms.
Best for Graphics - Canva
You don’t need to be a professional web designer to create eye-catching graphics that will draw attention to your brand. With an attractive array of pre-made layouts to choose from, Canva makes it easy to do just that. From logos to flyers to educational infographics, there’s an option to help every part of your marketing campaign stand out. And with both free and paid services, they make it accessible for every budget.
How to leverage Instagram for your benefit
Have you wondered where all your Facebook followers have gone?
If you’re a retailer – or just an average user – you may notice that you’re seeing more ads, political content, and puppy pictures than usual. And most important, fewer younger users.
That’s because the graphics-based social media platform Instagram has swooped in and begun dominating social users.
Instagram claims over one billion monthly active users. ONE BILLION. That’s a tough figure to ignore, and it illustrates why so many smart retailers are taking notice.
Instagram’s early days offered a somewhat rudimentary vertical display of pictures. Period. Ultimately its potential grew, and combined with forward-thinking strategizing of its leadership, it now has become a major player in advertising and marketing.
What drives most of Instagram’s appeal are “influencers,” or celebrities and others who have massive followings. Not willing to mess with the litany of issues that keep making Facebook more of a chore than a pleasure, these high-profile dazzlers maintain captive audiences. Some may be compensated to plug a product, but others are self-financed, and they honestly promote their favorite clothing, cosmetics, household décor, and just about anything they think of.