According to an article released by Statista, there were roughly 223 million social media users in America as of 2020. The growth of active social media users continues to rise, but it’s no longer only about connecting and conversing with friends. Companies have joined the conversation, as well. These conversations can provide opportunities to join the potential customer on his buyer journey! Allow us to explain how you can be part of your buyer’s journey on social media:
Stage 1 – Attract your target audience to your company.
Many people flock to social media when they have a problem and need a solution. Maybe they’re browsing several companies’ social media pages, or they’re asking for recommendations via a status update. Either way, you need to meet them where they are – on the social media platform that also works best for you – to offer them a solution to their problem.
Before you can offer them a solution, they need to know you exist. Then, you need to create a rapport with them so when they think of their problem, they think of your company as having the solution. Amazon does this incredibly well. For example, a college student – we’ll call him Jack – has a paper due in two days, but his printer has run out of ink. Jacks knows that if he orders via Amazon Prime, the ink will be there within 24 hours. He has plenty of time to print off his paper and turn it in. Problem solved.
Once you’ve determined which social media platform is best for you, attract them to your company and engage with them! You can do this by:
- Making regular posts that accurately represent your brand.
- Converse with them in the comments.
- Entertain them through insightful videos.
- Educate them about your products.
Overall, the main goal of this stage is to attract and engage your audience. You can view how well you’re doing in this stage by assessing your likes, reach, impressions, and engagement stats.
Stage 2 – Convert potential customers.
During stage one, your goal is to get in front of your target audience and let them know you exist. After consistent, helpful posts, they realize you may offer solutions to their current or future problems, and they inscribe your company’s name into their mental list of go-to companies. (SUCCESS!) It’s a lot of hard work, but we promise it pays off.
Once you reach stage two, your social media audience has grown, and now it’s time to pursue conversions from them. A conversion is any desired action you want your visitor to make. This can take many forms, such as:
- Clicking on an ad
- Purchasing a product
- Requesting services
- Signing up for your eNewsletter
- Submitting contact info
All conversions have one thing in common – your customer acts or gives on his own behalf. Until now, your company has been putting itself out there, trying to reach your target audience. Now that your target audience knows your brand and the solutions you offer, it’s time to convert them. If they believe in your products and/or services as the true solution to their problem, leads won’t mind converting because they know they’re getting something valuable in return.
Let’s discuss another scenario about Jack, our fictional college student. Jack attends Mercer University and is pursuing a Marketing degree. You are employed at a hip new marketing company, and the eBook you just wrote about Search Engine Marketing would probably teach him something valuable. How do you get the eBook in front of Jack? You create an enticing social post about your eBook and include a call-to-action to download it. Jack clicks on the link, a new tab pops open where he is asked to enter his email address to receive the eBook, Jack enters his email address, and the eBook is in his inbox in a matter of seconds. He has converted and received an insightful resource, and you’ve received his email address. Win-win.
Stage 3 – Close the deal.
By the time you’ve entered stage three, you have become a trusted resource for your potential customer. They not only know about your company – they view you as a leader in the industry, one in which they want to learn from and converse with. Congratulations!
Now it’s time to close the deal. Your potential customer trusts you, so the challenge is not convincing them that your product or service is the one to trust for their problem (you’ve already done that). The challenge is to convince them to act, and act now. If everyone knew that Amazon could deliver solutions to their door within 24 hours but nobody ever ordered from Amazon, the company would go under. Companies thrive when customers act. You must encourage them to do so! Here are a few ways to entice them to act:
- Create an offer that is only for a limited time.
- Personalize your communication to the potential customer.
- Offer incentives or a loyalty program with every purchase.
Brainstorm with your team the best ways to encourage your customers to act. Their actions can be measured (purchases), so in a short period of time, you’ll know if it’s working or not.
Stage 4 – Show your existing customers that you value them.
There is value in keeping existing customers. That’s not to say that it isn’t absolutely necessary to seek new customers; it is! But it can be very cost-effective to delight your existing customers which turns them into loyal patrons who return again and again. Consider what Harvard Business Review says about how much a company can save if they prioritize existing customers:
“Depending on which study you believe, and what industry you’re in, acquiring a new customer is anywhere from five to 25 times more expensive than retaining an existing one.”
Your existing customers chose your company for a reason. Continue giving them reasons to stay by valuing them and making sure they know it.
Partner with M&R Marketing!
Do any of these stages sound overwhelming? We don’t intend to overwhelm you! However, it is vital you take each stage seriously and pour countless hours into each one to ensure success. If you don’t have the time or would rather trust marketing experts with these important tasks, reach out to our team today. We’re kind of obsessed with helping companies – just like yours – succeed. Give us a call: 478-621-4491
Stay tuned for parts two and three of our social media series:
- Part 1 – How You Can be Part of Your Buyer’s Journey on Social Media
- Part 2 – How Social Analytics Can Help Measure Your Success on Social Media
- Part 3 – How to Create an Effective Social Content Calendar